Business School Topics
The UWA Business School continues to forge strong links with the corporate community and the partnership with BHP Billiton leads the way in delivering real, mutually beneficial outcomes.
Commencing in 2008 with a significant investment, BHP Billiton's partnership has manifested itself in many ways addressing a number of planned outcomes and ‘surprising' benefits.
"The relationship between BHP Billiton and the UWA Business School has numerous benefits for us and our stakeholders on many levels," says Murray Smith, VP of Human Resources at BHP Billiton Iron Ore.
"When I mention stakeholders; for us it's about our responsibility for fostering continual improvement within the broader BHP Billiton and UWA Business School community including all of our staff, students, and graduates.
"The more tangible benefits are an inflow into our talent pipeline, the benefit from research topics, links to academia and students for future projects, brand strengthening and making a contribution to the wider community through investing in education in Western Australia," he said.
"However, the investment has gone much further by providing our employees a sense of pride, and potentially creating opportunities for our employee's families to develop links to a world class business school as well as giving us a presence on the UWA Campus," revealed Smith.
As the relationship develops, a few unexpected benefits have arisen.
"The creation of a BHP Billiton Courtyard and an increased awareness at BHP Billiton of the broad range of research topics we can benefit from are some of the surprise outcomes we've experienced," said Smith.
"We have also seen development of some of our executive team from their involvement in the Business School as guest lecturers," he said.
Other tangible outcomes include supporting a new Professorial Chair titled, the BHP Billiton Chair in the Business of Resources.
This position aims to generate an improved business skills base which the resource industry is dependent upon. Another core outcome includes improved education and employment opportunities with a primary focus on people based in operational BHP Billiton regional areas.
Other initiatives underway to achieve core objectives include a suite of prizes and scholarships including five honours scholarships, four masters' scholarships and four PhD scholarships. Prizes are also awarded each year to the top honours, masters and PhD students.
The partnership also provides support for research and recruitment opportunities for UWA students University wide for vacation work, work experience and graduate recruitment.
Additionally, a professional development program with the AIM / UWA Business School alliance offers a short non-degree course to develop commercial skills in technically orientated managers. The course is specifically focused on developing and customising training programs for BHP Billiton Managers, Community Enterprises and Community Leaders from regional areas where BHP Billiton operates.
A boardroom lunch was recently hosted by BHP Billiton Iron Ore President, Ian Ashby and attended by 12 top undergraduate students from the Business School. Other opportunities include scholarship information open evenings targeting existing and potential students and an annual co-hosted sundowner where the recipients of BHP Billiton scholarships are recognised.
According to Dean of the Business School, Professor Tracey Horton, external partnerships are instrumental to the strategic framework of the Business School vision and daily operation.
"Corporate partnerships offer companies an opportunity to contribute to the delivery of world-class education and professional development opportunities across Asia and Australia as well as encourage direct business linkages to the Business School," said Professor Horton.
"How partners invest is wide ranging and is dependent upon a partner's vision.
"We work with each partner to ensure their specific commercial and strategic objectives are met, resulting in a range of initiatives. This can range from creating Professorial Chairs which enables the Business School to lift the level of teaching research at the University through to Scholarships which enables bright students to maximise their studies," said Professor Horton.
Find more information on UWA Business School corporate partners.