Cranfield University has been chosen by the Defence Growth Partnership (DGP) to be the education provider for the Defence Enterprise Export Programme (DEEP) launched today at the Farnborough International Air Show.

The programme, which is supported by DGP partner firms, aims to grow existing skills in export specialists and deliver an additional pipeline of export talent to the UK defence industry. Access to the programme is available through the apprenticeship levy, as well as through traditional funding pathways.

The first cohort was announced at Wednesday morning’s presentation at Farnborough, and they will commence their studies at Cranfield in January 2019, where they will undertake a bespoke Executive MBA. 

Through the programme, delegates will study towards an industry-accredited Executive MBA, as well as a Postgraduate Certificate in Defence Export.

DEEP also provides a career pathway and a secondment and loan model that enables individuals to move between firms and roles in order to build key skills and experience and benefit from mentoring opportunities.

The DEEP programme represents a continuation of the partnership between the DGP and Cranfield University that was initiated with the Systems Engineering Master's Apprenticeship Programme (SEMAP) in 2016.

Professor Sir Peter Gregson, Chief Executive and Vice-Chancellor, Cranfield University, said: “This programme draws on our unique strengths in management and technology. DGP DEEP will boost the skills of defence industry executives and Government officials and enable Britain to compete even more successfully on the international stage in this key sector.”

Allan Cook, Co-Chair of the DGP, commenting on the launch of DEEP, said: “Export is critically important to the long-term prosperity of the UK defence industry and the launch of DEEP will support major growth in this area. It’s a fantastic programme – in partnership with Cranfield University, a truly world-class academic institution – that can benefit the entire defence industry.

“Together, we will help to grow the UK economy by bolstering existing export skills and enabling companies to secure more high-value export contracts. It’s highly significant because, while there has been a huge focus on skills development at entry level in recent years, there has been far less emphasis on the upskilling of experienced, mid-level professionals who are on the pathway to become future business leaders. Continued skills development is crucial to personal and professional growth and a programme like DEEP helps to improve skills and assist their career development.”

Chris Wells, a member of the first cohort of DEEP delegates, also commented: “I’m delighted to be part of the first cohort of DEEP delegates after what has been a challenging application process. It’s a huge honour to be selected for such a prestigious programme and I’m looking forward to starting my studies and meeting my colleagues. The academic pathway will be a fantastic opportunity in itself and, combined with the other areas of DEEP, it will provide my fellow delegates and I with a platform to drive our careers forward.”

About Cranfield University

Cranfield has been a world leader in management education and research for over 50 years, helping individuals and organisations learn and succeed by transforming knowledge into action. We are dedicated to creating responsible management thinking, improving business performance and inspiring the next generation of business leaders. We work to change the lives of our students and executives by encouraging innovation and creative thinking, as well as the drive to succeed and make a real impact on their organisations.

Organisations as diverse as Jaguar Land Rover, BAE Systems, Royal Dutch Shell, L’Oréal, UNICEF and the African Development Bank have benefited from our work, which ranges from management research projects, through staff talent management development on our MBA courses, to customised executive programmes.

Cranfield is one of an elite group of Schools worldwide to hold the triple accreditation of: AACSB International (the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business), EQUIS (European Quality Improvement System) and AMBA (the Association of MBAs).

We are in the Top 10 International Business Schools in the Forbes’ ranking.

Our open and customised executive education programmes are ranked in the top five in the UK, according to the latest Financial Times survey, and in the top ten in the world for international reach. Over 10,000 people come to Cranfield each year to benefit from our executive and professional development programmes.