Students benefit from business partnerships

Students at London Metropolitan University are building rewarding careers thanks to the many Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) being carried out with industry.

Date: 26/11/2012

Students at London Metropolitan University are building rewarding careers thanks to the many Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) being carried out with industry. 

KTPs see the University work closely with a particular company or organisation for the mutual benefit of both. 

“We sit down together and discuss how we can help each other,” said Professor Karim Ouazzane, who has recently been appointed Knowledge Transfer Partnership Co-ordinator for the entire University.

“They tell us what they need in graduates and we adapt our curriculum to make sure our students have those qualities when they graduate. This enriches our courses and produces graduates ready for the market demand. In turn the companies get employees who have the skills they are looking for.” 

Based in the Faculty of Life Sciences and Computing, Professor Ouazzane has personally facilitated nearly 100 jobs for London Met students through Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, something he is very proud of. 

“I always try and give students a platform to give them a sense of empowerment which can motivate them to achieve what they are capable of,” Karim said. “And of course, the students go on to become part of my network and future opportunities can arise from that. You never know where things can lead.”  

Karim has managed some very successful KTPs at London Met, such as a partnership with EDPA to develop a special computer keyboard for disabled users. The company involved, which started in a caravan, now resides in a £2m office building and the product they made with London Met has transformed the lives of thousands of people who can now use computers. “I was so happy to work on something which had such an impact on our communities”, he said. “I was even invited to a dinner with The Queen in recognition of the work!” 

Other KTP highlights at London Met include a successful project with cutting-edge digital company New Brand Vision, whose Decibel Technology website software has been developed with the University. “90% of their development team are London Met graduates”, added Karim. 

London Met is also working with LifelineIT on an ambitious cyber-security project which could have far reaching social and commercial impacts. 

Karim, who has an MSc from the University of Liverpool and a PhD from Salford, has led a diverse academic career, but his passion for Knowledge Transfer Partnerships is easily identified. 

“Everyone benefits from this work”, he said. “This is how London Met will continue to play a special role in the market, with graduates securing rewarding jobs and our curriculum being at the cutting edge of industry thinking.”

Professor Ouazzane will be delivering an Inaugural Lecture at London Met on Wed 5 December in room GC1-08, 5.30pm. 

Find out more about the Faculty of Life Sciences and Computing.