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ARU forges closer links with local businesses

Published: 1 December 2023 at 16:00

Professor Mohammad Ali

Business Advisory Board set up to ensure university is meeting needs of companies

Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) has launched a new Business Advisory Board to link more closely with industry in the region and ensure graduates have the skills needed for the workplace.

The Board, which will sit within ARU’s Faculty of Business and Law, is made up of five ARU experts sitting alongside 12 representatives from a range of businesses, from large corporations to small and medium sized enterprises.

They will work together to examine how ARU can best meet the needs of themselves and other companies in the region, in areas from work placements to knowledge exchange and research.

The Business Advisory Board will also ensure ARU courses and initiatives are optimised to meet the standards of industry.

Members of the Business Advisory Board pictured on ARU's campus in Cambridge

The five key objectives of the Business Advisory Board are to:

  • Advise on the strategic direction of ARU’s business courses, including curriculum, programs, and initiatives, in line with current and future industry needs.
  • Offer insights and recommendations on emerging trends, challenges, and opportunities within the business landscape to ensure ARU remains innovative and responsive.
  • Facilitate partnerships and collaborations between ARU and external stakeholders, such as industry leaders, professionals, and organisations.
  • Assist in fostering a strong network of alumni and industry connections to enhance career development opportunities for students and graduates.
  • Provide input on ARU’s research activities, ensuring alignment with industry requirements and promoting knowledge exchange between academia and the business community.

The Board held its inaugural meeting earlier this week (Tuesday, 7 November), and heard a presentation on the mandatory inclusion of teaching of artificial intelligence (AI) and sustainability on all ARU courses.

Last year, ARU received £5.7million of Government funding to build AI hubs at its campuses in Chelmsford and Cambridge, as well as at ARU Peterborough, enabling lecturers to use cutting-edge technology to assist teaching.

Professor Mohammad Ali, Pro Vice Chancellor and Dean of the Faculty of Business and Law at Anglia Ruskin University (ARU), said:

“The ARU Business Advisory Board is an important part of the university's commitment to providing high-quality business education and research.

“Collaboration between industry and higher education, is strengthened when we understand the drivers and motivations for both parties. The Business Advisory Board allows for industry to engage with ARU, to reinforce and nurture these relationships.”

Working closely with industry partners will also allow ARU academics to better understand the societal challenges facing small and large businesses in the region, resulting in further research that benefits employers and the wider economy.

Professor Ali added:

“ARU aims to transform lives through entrepreneurial approach to education and research, so forging closer links with industry experts will be key to ensuring that our graduates are as well prepared as possible to meet the needs of employers.”