Upon leaving HMS Monmouth as a PO in 2013, I was promoted to CPO and moved to my next appointment in Mar 14 at NCHQ. I understood at the time that moving to a shore side role (for a 2 year appointment) would enable me conduct some educational courses/personal development. Opportunities you don't get time for on sea going units due to workload and programmes. At that time I had 7 years left in the RN, but knew I should start preparing for life as a civilian. It's never too early to get your exit strategy in order someone once told me!!! My issue was I didn't know what I wanted to do or where to start. But knew I should do something - anything. I eventually engaged with Portsmouth NETS team and was effectively "coached", the advisor drawing the solutions out of me and I eventually formulated a loose education plan.
That plan started with being signposted to Wessex Business School (WBS). My initial overall goal was to complete a BA(Hons) Leadership and Management, but first I needed to conduct a Bridging Module to prepare me for, as well as give reassurance to WBS/Northumbria Uni that I could study at degree level.
I attended a 2 day workshop, hosted by WBS in HMS Nelson, which I found challenging but extremely useful.
The tutor was enthusiastic, knowledgeable and supportive throughout. Not only over the 2 day workshop, but beyond when I was conducting course work.
The requirements of Bridging Module were explained in detail.
Like myself, many on the course were new to the requirements of higher learning. However, the tutor explained each step, the specifics of what was required and was only too happy to answer questions. Of which there were many...mainly from myself.
The advice and guidance I received when looking to choose a project proposal was particularly helpful.
At the start I had no idea, but through clear explanation of what would be required, I was able to choose a proposal that was relevant to my job, current and of interest to me. This helped enormously when the time at Northumbria came to conduct the research and write it up.
The proof of this comes from gaining a 1:1 for my final dissertation.
I believe the guidance and support I received from WBS, during the 2 day Bridging Module and the distance learning course work directly contributed to me gaining a strong 2:1 BA(Hons) Leadership and Management.
Since then I've gone on to gain CMI quals L3 & 5 in Coaching and Mentoring, as well as an NLP Practitioner qualification.
I'm due to start a Post Grad in Coaching and Mentoring in September 19, with the longer term aspiration of completing a Masters Leadership, Management and Coaching and also becoming and Chartered Manager.
WBS was the first step on my higher education journey and because of the positive experience I had with them it's motivated me to keep going, step by step, qual by qual".