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Global Development Institute

Noel Bay

Noel is studying MSc Organisational Change and Development.

On choosing Global Development at Manchester

Noel Bay

In the field of organisation development, there aren’t many master's courses out there that can compete with the reputation of the one that The University of Manchester offers.

The course is well-known in organisation development circles and came highly recommended from a Director in my organisation who previously attended the courses.

On my personal highlight

Getting the opportunity to network with so many different nationalities.

It is meaningful to have built bonds with my course-mates and understand each other’s diverse culture and backgrounds. Being able to marry theory with my practitioner experience in the field of organisation development has enabled me to learn a great deal from the course.

On the hardest part of my course

Transiting from a professional working-style of writing to academic writing has been very challenging.

There are many nuances one has to take note of in academic writing and regulations to follow in terms of style and words to use. It takes time getting used to.

On the student experience

My experience thus far has been nothing short of fantastic. Having worked for nearly seven years before coming to the University to study, I appreciate the time I have to stock-take, reflect and enjoy time out of the hustle and bustle of the workplace.

It has also afforded time for my very supportive wife and me to enjoy life together and spend quality time with each other.

Of course, studying has its own stresses but there are even greater joys that come with it with meeting people and feeling young again!

On volunteering and sports

I wanted to try something that I would not get to try back in Singapore so I joined the American Football team, known as the Manchester Tyrants. We train thrice a week and the season runs from November to February. It was a personal achievement to have been part of the first team that represents the University at the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) competition. Joining the Tyrants has been a delightful experience because the team is closely-knit, the set-up is well-run and we have dedicated coaches and committed team captains to galvanise the squad. If anyone wants to try something different and be part of a team sport, do check out the Tyrants.

I was also honoured to be elected as class representative for my master's course cohort and with it has come a different set of responsibilities. These include representing the interests of my course-mates to the SEED management, collecting feedback on course modules and handling other administrative matters.

On being an international student

I have to congratulate the University and School for making us international students feel very much at home.

The administrators have put in much effort to help us settle in and are readily available whenever we have queries of admin-related issues.

On the best thing about studying in Manchester

I am a huge Manchester United fan so needless to say, the best thing is definitely Old Trafford and the atmosphere on match days!

On my future

As I am on a company scholarship, I will have to go back to serve a bond.

My course has allowed me to gain deep insights into other areas that are related to organisation development, such as human resource development and human resource management, and this has perked my interest to perhaps try my hand in the human resources field of work in the near future.

On tips for future students

I believe that for anyone who has had some work experience and is coming here to study, there is a two-way ‘transaction’.

As a student, we gain plenty out of the lessons and the networking but I also believe that we should give-back through freely sharing our work experiences, helping younger course-mates to understand how working life is like and providing them with good advice. Many of the look up to us as seniors who have been through the baptism of fire in the working world.

Keeping an open mind is important to ensure you get most out of your study experience and making as many friends as you can is crucial to your social life!

Just come with an open heart and an open mind to learn and interact with diverse cultures. I guarantee you will leave with heart and mind that is overflowing with meaning and satisfaction.