Law firm backing for new business centre

(L-R) Marcus Ward, Head of Major Gifts at Queen's Development and Alumni Relations Office, John-George Willis, Head of Corporate at Tughans and Professor Richard Harrison, Director of Queen's University Management School.
(L-R) Marcus Ward, Head of Major Gifts at Queen's Development and Alumni Relations Office, John-George Willis, Head of Corporate at Tughans and Professor Richard Harrison, Director of Queen's University Management School.

A commercial law firm with close connections to the North West is backing a new new £15 million Postgraduate and Executive Education Centre at Queen’s University.

John-George Willis, Head of Corporate at Tughans, who have an office on Northland Road in Derry, says the centre will be critical to the north’s long-term economic future.

“This project must be seen as an opportunity that has the potential to transform our economy and put Northern Ireland plc on the map.

“Education underpins a region’s economic performance and now, more than ever, we must support higher and further education if we want our economy to flourish.

“At Tughans, we have always had close links to Queen’s. A large proportion of our lawyers and staff are Queen’s graduates, and we are confident that both of our busy offices will benefit from the strong support mechanisms the Queen’s Postgraduate and Executive Education Centre will offer and that we will be able to make the most of the networking opportunities available.”

He says crucial to the future competitiveness of Northern Ireland, particularly in international markets.

The centre, which will be based at Riddel Hall on Belfast’s Stranmillis Road, will support leaders in all sectors of north’s economy by developing bespoke leadership and executive education programmes designed to address short and long term business challenges.

Professor Richard Harrison, Director of Queen’s University Management School explains: “The development of leadership skills is central to the transformation of businesses.

“For Northern Ireland to become a competitive global economy it requires access to world class management knowledge and effective policy and managerial practice.”

The investment in the Postgraduate and Executive Education Centre at Queen’s will see the appointment of 15 leading management professionals from across the globe. Professor Harrison continued: “We will have access to a vast range of experience and research at the Postgraduate and Executive Education Centre. We can provide off-the-shelf programmes, or, if these are not suitable we will tailor training to meet the business need.”

The Postgraduate and Executive Education Centre will also fill a gap in the market as a meeting and conferencing venue. The versatile facilities on offer make it suitable for small meetings and large conferences.