Stuart Cameron appointed managing director of commercial operations at independent higher education provider, UCQ. The higher education institute recently launched its Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship (CMDA).

Based in the Platform offices in Leeds, Stuart will be responsible for expanding UCQ’s commercial programme and attracting candidates to UCQ’s six regional centres by raising awareness of the CMDA and its benefits among individuals and businesses, and developing strong professional links with employers and other key industry stakeholders.

As one of the first independent higher education institutes encouraged by Government through the Higher Education and Research Act 2017, UCQ’s CMDA works closely with employers to minimise impact within the workplace by providing greater flexibility than traditional higher education institutes.

Stuart brings many years’ experience of being an employer having founded and led two market leading businesses. He has also won awards for entrepreneurship. And turned failing companies around, managed the difficulties of company closure and selling businesses along the way.

More recently Stuart led the training arm of the $50 Billion Danish conglomerate, Maersk, in the UK, helping to establish it as the world’s leading provider of training and education programmes to the wind energy sector.

Commenting on his new role, Stuart said,

“There is still an enormous challenge to educate businesses about the benefits qualified managers can bring in performance and productivity.

“According to research by the Chartered Management Institute, 80% of British managers hold no formal qualifications in management. This under investment in the development of necessary management skillsets is one of the reasons for the UK’s lagging levels of productivity as compared to the other G7 economies. This is a major factor behind the introduction of the CMDA.

“I can understand why there has been a reluctance to send an employee on a traditional management degree course. This is due to the disruption it can cause in the workplace while they are studying. That is why we have drawn on our previous employer experience to design a work-based programme which suits the business.

“Students can attend sessions at a regional centre, employer’s facility, live webinars or mix and match according to work commitments. Each student will have a mentor who will work alongside them and their employer for the duration of the course. This therefore ensures we arrange the most suitable programme for both parties.

“I am blessed to have held senior leadership roles within the Maersk Group. There, I benefitted from huge investments in my own leadership development, including a funded MBA programme. I appreciate that a stumbling block for many organisations can be the cost. Many companies are not aware that the cost of degree apprenticeships can be funded from the Government’s Apprenticeship Levy.”