Established in 1904, the University of Leeds is part of the Russell Group of leading UK universities. As one of the largest higher education institutions in the UK it is renowned globally for the quality of its teaching and research, featuring in the top 100 in the QS World University rankings.
Eighty miles away, Cheshire-based Hydraulics Online – named as Export Champions by the UK Government’s Department for International Trade since 2019 – continues to attract wide-ranging recognition for its vision and credentials in serving a truly global customer base.
Having first worked together throughout the summer of 2020, the Leeds University Business School (LUBS) has now reached out to Hydraulics Online co-founder, Helen Tonks, asking to step their collaboration up a gear – inviting her to join the LUBS International Business Divisional Advisory Board.
Leeds University Business School is a world ranked, triple-accredited business school and its Divisional Advisory Board exists to provide external input and interaction for the development of programmes, curriculum content and employability advice – ensuring that teaching and research is always meaningful, relevant, and fit for purpose.
Forging stronger links between business and education
Helen has long been an exemplar for those in business supporting education. She commented, “I am absolutely thrilled to have been asked to join the university’s International Business Divisional Advisory Board. Anyone who knows me well knows just how passionate I am about the business community and education sector building bridges and working more closely together. In my experience it creates a powerful two-way flow of challenge and support, and a virtuous circle of inspiration and learning for all who are involved.
“I have been a primary school governor since 2014, but over the last 3 years I have been increasingly involved at the other end of the educational spectrum: providing real business engagement and learning opportunities to university under- and post-graduates alike. Working with LUBS in this way will provide a wonderful opportunity for me to input both a strategic perspective to the students’ learning journey, balanced with providing a ‘real world’ lens on the issues and opportunities facing SMEs in international business today. And I know that my own learning journey will continue too through being involved.”
Recognising entrepreneurial flair and perseverance
As well as working with the Business School at a strategic level, Helen will also be rolling up her sleeves to support the students’ learning directly: joining class discussions and informal talks, acting as a case study, judging divisional awards and through mentoring.
Dr. Giles Blackburne, Associate Professor of International Business, worked with Helen last year. He said:
We’re delighted that Helen has agreed to join our Divisional Advisory Board. Today’s students – and tomorrow’s graduates – need role models that reflect entrepreneurial flair, perseverance, and the potential of digital business models. We very much welcome Helen’s input into our curriculum development and look forward to her contribution to enhancing the student experience here at Leeds University Business School.