Business school develops management development programme for Africa

May 29, 2013


The aim of the programme is to create a bespoke model specifically to be applied in Africa.
Trials have begun with organisations across sub-Saharan Africa, led by Professor Rob Paton and the OU’s lecturer in business development (Africa) Francis Cattermole.
He and his team are working closely with trainers and academics to develop the programme content, delivery and how it will be taught.
Mr Cattermole said:  “The intention is to work closely with African trainers and academics in this programme and it will be backed up by evaluative research led by the OU and using researchers in Africa and the UK.
“The outcome is intended to be a new model of management development which is specifically fit for purpose in an African context.”
Pictured on a visit to the OU Business School in Milton Keynes is Bridget Nagomoro, who has developed plans to build a girls’ school in southern Sudan – where 90% of women are illiterate.
Almost six years ago she told John Benington, husband of Professor Jean Hartley, Professor in Public Leadership at the OUBS, of her dream to build a boarding school in her village.Jean and John, were in pre-independence South Sudan running workshops for the interim government and agreed to help.
Today Bridget is the Government Commissioner for Ibba County in South Sudan and was joined on her visit by Pia Philip Michael (also pictured), the South Sudan State Minister of Education, Western Equatorial State.
He said there is a need for more female teachers in South Sudan and applauded the way in which the OU brings quality online learning to the people.
The two met staff in Teacher Education in sub-Saharan Africa at the Milton Keynes campus to discuss research and activities relevant to supporting teachers through open on-line teaching materials.
Professor Hartley said: “The meeting was hugely successful and our visitors will be returning armed with CDs, papers, web links and contacts in East Africa.
  • Bridget, now one of only two female government commissioners in South Sudan, was the only girl from her village to receive schooling after the age of ten, walking miles to school each day carrying and selling firewood.
Most girls in South Sudan leave school at that age because of pressure from family, household duties and early pregnancy. Bridget continued her education at a convent and dreamed of building a boarding school for girls aged ten and older.
With the help of churches in South Sudan, the local chief and the Friends of Ibba Girls School in the UK, £400,000 has been raised and building work is under way.
The first intake of girls is planned for February next year.
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