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Mareen Okomgboeso University of Liverpool online MSc in Operations and Supply Chain Management graduate Maureen Sam-Okomgboeso worked in IT and business process support in the oil and gas sector in her home country, Nigeria, before moving to the United Arab Emirates.

“Because the masters degree programme was online, I was able to continue seamlessly when my family relocated to the UAE from Nigeria.”

Why did you choose to study online for a University of Liverpool online masters degree?

I wanted to do a masters with a top university without having to leave my job and family. In Nigeria, I worked for a multinational oil and gas company. Towards the end of the MSc programme, my husband got a job offer in the UAE and we had to relocate. I decided to stay home with our three children for the first year before heading out into the labour market again.

What motivated you to study for the masters in operations management?

My first degree was in computer science and most of my work background at the time was in core IT. I had just joined the SAP enterprise resource planning (ERP) team in my organisation and felt that for my new role I needed a more diversified education to match my experience.

Tell us about the challenges and highlights of your online study:

I had challenges balancing my family life and my job. My spouse works offshore and so I had to manage the family while also keeping up with my job.

The highlight for me was studying with people from different regions of the world and being able to exchange ideas.

What are the main advantages of following an online programme?

I could run it at my pace. I could take a short break when the pressure was too much. Most important of all was that I could carry on from any part of the world. I was able to continue seamlessly when I relocated with my family from Nigeria to the UAE.

Who did you interact with in the online classroom?

I had contact with students from several different places – Canada, China, UK, UAE, Palestinian territories – and also from different sectors. Our discussions in the virtual classroom gave me a wide understanding of different industries.

How did online study fit into your life?

I increased my office hours. I stayed at the office after work each day to catch up with classroom discussions and weekly assignments.

What are your top tips for others?

My advice for others is to have a schedule and also to start the week early. Start reading the materials at the beginning of the study week. Time management is key.

How relevant has the study been for your work?

I was able to see inefficiencies in our operations and I made suggestions to improve our processes. More importantly I hope to apply the knowledge I’ve gained in greater depth when I begin working again.

I would recommend the University of Liverpool because...

The online programme is flexible and engaging. It is an almost real-time learning environment.

Research

Maureen presented a paper, based on her MSc dissertation research, at EurOMA 2013, a leading European conference on operations management. The paper, co-authored by two University of Liverpool Dissertation Advisors was 'An Investigation Into The Effect Of Organisational Support On User Acceptance Of ERP During The Routine Stage', Maureen Sam-Okomgboeso, Maria Argyropoulou, Samuel Ankrah.


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