Huddersfield Business School at the University of Huddersfield has won a prestigious award for its work in supporting the local business community.

Named Business School of the Year at The Times Higher Education Awards 2023, the judges were impressed by how the school has supported the local community and wider region.

In the past two years, Huddersfield Business School has driven numerous local projects, creating jobs and boosting local businesses.

One of the standout achievements for the school has been the Help to Grow programme, a Government-backed scheme to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

More than 60 companies have benefited from Help to Grow with Huddersfield Business School so far.

Through two major European Structural and Investment Fund programmes focusing on supply chains and manufacturing, the university was able to give strategic support to more than 200 local manufacturing companies in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, opening new market opportunities for businesses and helping them improve efficiency.

The judges also recognised how the business school’s programmes have engaged students. In 2021-22, 170 of the university’s Masters’ students provided consultancy services for 33 clients.

One such consultancy project, with Spectrum People, an independent charity for vulnerable adults and young people in Wakefield, engaged 781 people and led to the creation of 82 jobs.

The judges said: “The school has delivered fantastic evidence of impact and outcomes, such as job creation and high levels of engagement to the benefit of students, the local community, employers and the economy.” 

The ceremony in Liverpool was attended by a delegation from Huddersfield Business School, including:

Pro-Vice Chancellor (International) and acting Dean, Professor Alistair Sambell;

Director of External Engagement and former Dean, Professor Jill Johnes;

Director of Executive Education, Dr Nic Stenberg;

Research, Innovation and Knowledge Exchange Manager, Nikki Hill;

Vice Chair of the Huddersfield Business School Advisory Board and Deputy Regional Director for Yorkshire and Humber at the CBI, Olga Watterich.

Professor Sambell said: “This is an absolutely fantastic achievement, reflecting the work of academic and professional services colleagues across the school. The award particularly recognised the work of the school in supporting our local external communities post-Covid.

“Thank you to everyone who contributed to us achieving this award – staff, students, local businesses and partners across our region and beyond.

“It is a reminder of the real difference the school is making to the lives of our students and the wider community.”

The Times Higher Education awards have been running for 19 years and are designed to celebrate the many examples of excellence across the sector.