An experience you cannot get anywhere else
Being stretched and challenged academically and mixing with such a cohort of high calibre is enriching, and all are willing to share their knowledge and act as a sounding board outside the lecture sessions. Oxford is an experience you cannot get anywhere else; its rich history is embodied in beautiful college buildings with outstanding architecture. The unforgettable true Oxford experience of college dinners on Thursday evenings and going out with cohorts to explore Oxford restaurants has added to the richness of the experience. I have made friends for life. If I could do it again, I would!
How has the MSc in Major Programme Management helped you to practically face a challenge?
I believe that leadership and professional development unlock value at all levels, and benefits for me include exposure to different leadership styles. On an individual level, this means honing my skills, learning new tools and growing as a professional, whether that means focusing on leadership or broadening and deepening my capabilities in my career. For example, what I have learned and am incorporating into my work for the benefit of the company, such as organisation design, systems thinking and being able to take components from every module, such as scrutinising programme performance and developing a deep understanding of the company’s strategy, require judgement, which is a critical component of transformational leadership.
Although I have extensive experience working on complex programmes, this course has enhanced my ability to deal with complexity and analytical skills and given me the courage to be more inquisitive, positively ask tough questions, and act in the best interests of patients and taxpayers. I feel I have grown in confidence, but not in dogmatism.
Perfect fit for the NHS
In 1948, when the NHS was conceived, it was designed to provide episodic disease management. For example, you went to your GP or hospital for treatment. Across the UK, it is considered the 'jewel in the crown,' and on a global level, its reputation is unparalleled. It is home to ground-breaking treatments, cutting-edge research, and digital health. Over the years, this has become the largest complex government-funded healthcare system in the world, and we are in an era of complex and growing international challenges. The NHS's involvement in the global health market has increased over the years, and major programmes have become a vehicle for delivering change.
Despite my years of experience managing large programmes, I was keen to learn tried and tested methodologies and how others approach these challenges from other industries globally, in the hope of equipping me with tools to ensure that the NHS benefits from such innovations. Hence, I embarked on a quest to find a major programme course but could not find it at any other university, and that led me to Oxford. This executive programme is a perfect fit for what I have been looking for.
I believe it is about being authentic and bringing to life what you are passionate about! To me it’s what gets me out of bed, for example helping others. It is also about persistence. I applied twice for the scholarship before and didn't get this, so I persevered.
Scholarship for Women
It was surreal, and I still have to pinch myself to ensure it was not just a dream! It is a privilege and an honour to have been granted this very competitive scholarship, and without the scholarship, I would not have been able to attend the programme. I am eternally grateful to have been given this life-changing opportunity! God willing, when I am sitting on my rocking chair and I am grey and old, I will still be counting my many blessings, including the scholarship that opened the door to the Oxford experience. It's almost like standing on the shoulders of those who did it. Hopefully you can become the shoulder to stand on for somebody else, even if it's not necessary financially.
What three words would you use to describe the programme?
Intellectually stretched, transformational, life-changing!