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Another mark is made in University Centre Shrewsbury history

Students are celebrating their place in the history of University Centre Shrewsbury after completing the first course. The classes have finished and all the assignments have been handed in for the Certificate in Management Studies (CMS) course.

A small intake of pioneering postgraduates was welcomed to University Centre Shrewsbury in October 2014, to study CMS and Certificate in Public Health (CPH) courses. The CPH course is due to be completed in the summer.

The CMS is designed to support graduates wishing to accelerate their management careers, by enhancing their leadership, entrepreneurial, problem solving, and creative thinking skills.

The CPH is a professional development programme for people currently working in the field of public health and health improvement, and those interested in improving health and well-being, preventing disease and reducing health inequalities in the population.

University Centre Shrewsbury has been established by the University of Chester and Shropshire Council after research showed there was strong demand and interest in a new institution to serve the needs of the county. The curriculum has been designed with health providers and local businesses while industry specialists are joining academics to teach at the University Centre.

As planned, about 20 postgraduate students started the first CMS and CPH courses.

Professor Clare Schofield, who heads-up the Sustainable Business and Community Development learning and research area said: "With the completion of the first course, another page has been written in the history of University Centre Shrewsbury.

"The students have worked extremely hard and I'd like to congratulate them on their dedication. I'd also like to thank the tutors - both academic and industry professionals - for the close support and broad range of knowledge they have offered to ensure that our students succeed.

"Their expertise has helped the students to gain new skills which they will be able to bring back and apply to their work and organisations."

Geoff Anslow, a Shropshire Council graduate and one of the first students, said: "I thoroughly enjoyed my time studying at University Centre Shrewsbury and am delighted to have gained the Certificate in Management Studies qualification. The programme itself was dynamic, creative, highly analytical and involved intensive support from academics and industry experts alike.

"The course has undoubtedly increased my understanding of business and management theory - and will hopefully stand me in good stead as I continue in my career."

Michael Smith, a chartered accountant with directorship level experience at London-based investment banks, who taught sessions as part of the CMS course, added: "It has been both an honour and great fun to be among the first to teach at University Centre Shrewsbury."

Luke Bennett, Healthy Lifestyles Manager, Herefordshire Council, also provided an update on the CPH, which is more than three-quarters of the way through.

He said: "I am thrilled to have the opportunity of studying the postgraduate Certificate in Public Health; I see it as a great opportunity to expand my knowledge in public health and acquire new skills to enhance my contribution within the public health team, helping to reduce health inequalities.

"It is also providing a perfect opportunity to meet fellow public health professionals from Shropshire and hear about the approaches they take to addressing public health issues."

Postgraduate courses being offered at University Centre Shrewsbury also include History of Science, Business Administration, Museums Practice and Sports and Exercise Medicine Master's.

Teaching sessions for the first postgraduate students are being held at Rowley's House in Shrewsbury town centre.

Undergraduate courses are due to start at University Centre Shrewsbury in autumn this year.