“This top-up award, which typically takes 18 months, is very popular, and an invaluable next step for these students who have already completed the Institute for the Management of Information Systems (IMIS) Higher Diploma in their own country."
Andy Jones, Principal Lecturer in the Faculty of Computing Engineering and Sciences
Three distance learners travelled thousands of miles to meet and celebrate their graduation together.
Mutemwa Pumulo from Zambia, Bernard Ariro from South Africa and Nora Osei-Bonsu from Ghana were among the first cohort of BA(Hons) Information Systems Management distance-learning graduates.
And the Staffordshire University awards ceremony held at Trentham Estate was the first opportunity they had to meet up with each other and their award leader Andy Jones.
Andy said: “They all have busy lives – families and jobs – and it’s great that they travelled all of this way to celebrate their graduation.
“This top-up award, which typically takes 18 months, is very popular, and an invaluable next step for these students who have already completed the Institute for the Management of Information Systems (IMIS) Higher Diploma in their own country.
“Other UK Universities offer top-ups to the Institute for the Management of Information Systems (IMIS) Higher Diploma but requires students to travel to and accommodation in the UK for the duration of the course, something that is well outside the reach of most."
Bernard who works for a construction company and has been promoted to be in charge of operations in 11 countries, said “It was quite demanding to manage work, family and study – and I had to find more than 24 hours in a day but it was worth all the effort. It’s been a great year for me so far.”
Mother of three children Mutemwa works as a PA but started on the degree so that she could embark on a more challenging career. She said: “It was really difficult but it feels really good to be here – at the end of it.”
Nora, a mum of two, has also been promoted as a result of her drive to complete her degree and has talked other colleagues into taking up the course. She added: “It’s been awesome and I’m now seeing all the hard work starting to pay off.”
Andy is very excited about the continued success of this award. “We have two intakes per year, September and January and at the moment we have over 30 students either studying now or ready to start in January.
“It is, as far as I know, a unique award as it doesn’t require students to travel to the UK for the duration of the course, something that is well outside the reach of most.
“IMIS is now part of the British Computer Society, the Chartered institute for IT. These three students along with many others have shown a desire to continue their education to Honours degree level and beyond,” he added.
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