The Application: We need to talk about nuclear

'My personal mantra is how hard can it be? If someone else can do it, why can't I? It's often yourself that holds you back, but you don't realise it.'

The Application with Rebecca Weston

As the lead in the UK’s Ministry of Defence Warhead Group, overseeing the country’s nuclear deterrent, Dr Rebecca Weston is one of the most senior female leaders in the European nuclear industry.


Rebbeca Weston at Sellafield nuclear plant

Rebecca is also a graduate of the Oxford Executive MBA, taking time out from a demanding job at the Sellafield nuclear site to complete the course.

In this episode she chats to Kathy Harvey about how the daughter of french and history teachers plumped for physics, and how that choice took her on a journey to top roles in the nuclear industry. Rebecca grew up in the seaside town of Skegness. (Spoiler alert: Skegness is not in Scotland.)

During their conversation she reflects on the challenges of leadership; what she says about her job at dinner parties; and the place of nuclear power in the UK’s energy mix. 


I think we still need to change the dial in terms of women in STEM and really, really make that much more the norm.

She reflects on what it was like to be a women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) in the early phase of her career compared to today. She says she doesn't think the the stats have changed that much and that 'it's going to take a while before we truly get to society that's got a better level of equity, quality and respect for everybody, but we've got to keep striving for that every day.'

(You can fimd out more information about career pathways and careers in STEM on the Defence Nuclear Enterprise website)

The Application is a podcast that tells us about our alumni – their background, what was the driver that caused them to apply for the Oxford Executive MBA (EMBA), what the turning points in their lives are, what their identity is and the tension that often embodies so much of our professional lives.

This year we celebrate the 20th anniversary of the programme and to mark this milestone, Kathy Harvey, Associate Dean, has stepped back behind the microphone with a number of our alumni to reflect on their journeys before, during and after their Executive MBA. 


The Oxford Executive MBA is a transformational programme, that will challenge you to explore the answers to complex business issues. Learn how to innovate, how to lead responsibly and how to navigate change to transform your own business practice.