Posted on Wednesday 6 March 2013 by Ulster Business

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For the first time in its 100 years of existence the Institute of Directors (IoD) has opened up its membership to young directors of the future.

The Ulster Business School (UBS) has become the first academic institution in Northern Ireland to avail of the opportunity with 200 of its under and post graduate students receiving one year's free membership.

The organisation said the IoD/UBS partnership will enable the next generation of local business leaders to access bespoke products for students and network at exclusive IoD-led local and national events.

Launched at the Jordanstown Campus, the scheme will initially run until February 2014. The selected students, most of them enrolled on business courses, will benefit from the advantages attached to IoD membership, including access to the Young Directors Forum, key business events, student-only events and email lists, and crucially direct communication with seasoned business leaders.

An online business information resource centre will complement the networking opportunities with a collection of online databases. A LinkedIn forum, expert mentoring from full IoD members, as well as internship and work placement notices are just a few of the additional perks made available to student members.

Professor Marie McHugh, Dean of the Ulster Business School said: "We are thrilled to have developed this partnership with the Institute of Directors. This prestigious student membership scheme will greatly enhance our students' visibility and employability in a very competitive job market. The opportunity to avail of all the exclusive resources included in the IoD membership package will give student members a significant head-start in their future careers, notably by allowing them to create vital contacts at networking events. IoD membership will add substantial value to our students' skillsets as well as make them stand out from the crowd in a very competitive job market."

Mervyn McCall, Chair of IoD (NI), added: "Partnering with the Ulster Business School in introducing a new membership programme for promising students is a significant step to ensure that future leaders benefit from the best available resources and contacts at an early stage of their professional journey. The Student membership scheme will strengthen links between universities and the business world, which will feed from each other's dynamism, innovative spirit and expertise. We are looking forward to providing for the first time in the history of the IoD comprehensive support to aspiring students. This will significantly enhance their academic experience and give them the edge they need to become the next generation of successful business leaders in the UK and, indeed, full members of the IoD."

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