There were many things that attracted me to the NGDP – new challenges, the promised fast-track into management, being able to work anywhere in the country, the vast array of services delivered by local authorities and the many possibilities which that brought.
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I also wanted to join a scheme with a reputation comparable to private sector graduate programmes - for me, the Warwick diploma raised the NGDP to this level. During my two years on the scheme I undertook five different placements at Devon CC and the real experience I gained at my authority was invaluable.
However, the benefit of being part of the NGDP was the national perspective.
An understanding of how local government operated beyond Devon’s county hall: history, policy, central-local relations, and so on, much of which was gained through the postgraduate course. When authorities sometimes seemed unsure at what level to pitch the work placements, the real challenge often came from the course at Warwick.
Networking in person with the graduates from other authorities was also very important.
Since completing the NGDP, I have qualified as a project manager and have been working for Devon’s library service, delivering refurbishments and rolling out self-service technology. As with anything, there were pros and cons with the scheme, but it can’t be denied that the NGDP opened the door to a career in local government for me.
Without it I certainly wouldn’t be working here today.
Anna Matthews, Devon CC libraries