Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Employment and Sustainable Growth, John Swinney, provided words of encouragement to graduates of the University of Stirling’s Management School at an alumni evening on 10 May.
The special dinner event – organised by the Stirling Institute for Socio Management – was for graduates of the MBA in Public Service Management programme and hosted by Professor Steve Burt, Senior Deputy Principal of the University.
The event featured a keynote after-dinner talk by the Cabinet Secretary, in which he spoke about challenges facing public services in the current economic climate and offered words of wisdom to alumni about making continued professional progress within the sector.
Commenting on the event and the MBA programme, Mr Swinney said: “I was delighted to be invited to address the University’s MBA alumni dinner on the future challenges and opportunities facing Scotland’s public services.
“These are uniquely challenging times for Scotland’s people and communities. At times like these, public services have a vital role in supporting people to work, look after their families and maintain their health and well-being. Scotland’s leaders have a duty to respond intelligently and collectively to achieve the best possible outcomes for people and communities.
“Working collaboratively across sectors, we must all be bold and creative in our approaches to increase sustainable economic growth.”
Since its inception in 1993, the MBA in Public Service Management programme at Stirling has become increasingly successful. It is unique in Scotland in providing the opportunity to study management with an explicit public service orientation and is designed to help public service managers reach corporate or senior managerial positions. Participants include managers from the health service, police force, prison and fire services, the civil service, the voluntary sector and local authorities. Many former students now occupy senior management positions in a range of governmental, local and voluntary services.
The alumni evening also included a speech by Dr William Webster, Senior Lecturer and Programme Director of the MBA programme, as well as a Question Time-style session with Mr Swinney, which enabled guests to pose their questions to the Minister.
Dr William Webster said: “It is our pleasure to welcome Mr Swinney to the University and we are delighted with his willingness to support the MBA programme and the Management School’s alumni - especially since this group contains the public service leaders of the future.
“Mr Swinney makes a significant contribution to Scottish politics and to the reform of public services in Scotland, and it has been interesting to hear his views on the future of public services.”
He added: “The professional achievements of our MBA alumni are testament to the high calibre of our students, as well as to the strength of research, teaching and learning here at Stirling.