Bsc degree? No, a KFC!
A Leicester university is launching the first honours degree course in fast-food management.
KFC – famous for its bargain buckets and secret recipe coating – has teamed up with De Montfort University to offer the three-year distance learning degree.
About 60 of the chain's outlet managers are expected to take the course during the next few years.
Martin Shuker, managing director of KFC in the UK and Ireland, said the company chose De Montfort from a shortlist of eight UK universities.
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He said: "KFC degrees give us an opportunity to reward some of our best performers, who never had the chance to go to university when they were younger.
"Our employees gain a meaningful and respected qualification while still earning money, and we reap the benefits of their improved skills and confidence in the business."
KFC is investing £600,000 in the course.
Each student will pay a total of £4,500 in tuition fees – compared to the standard £9,000 a year – while KFC will also pay £4,500 per individual.
The course will include a fixed number of study days on campus, but most of the work will be done at home, enabling students to earn while they learn.
The first students will enrol in January, picking up skills that will help them run restaurants that can employ up to 40 staff and turn over more than £1million a year.
Jan Worth, the university's business development manager, is putting the finishing touches to the sponsored course.
She said: "It will have some of the same modules of a business management course, but one or two of the modules will be designed especially for them.
"It's a KFC-led initiative and we have looked at the apprenticeship schemes and the in-house modules they already do and we will be enhancing those.
"This is very much a growing area of opportunity for universities.
"I think that it's a very, very exciting opportunity and KFC view it the same way.
"People coming on to this programme will be managing businesses that are generating £1.25 million in sales a year.
"We have been getting a positive reaction to the plans."
Professor David Wilson, deputy vice-chancellor and dean of business and law, said: "This is an important new contract for De Montfort University and we are delighted to have this opportunity of working with such a major player in the global restaurant market."
Two years ago, McDonald's introduced its own foundation degree in business management for its restaurant bosses, accredited by Manchester Metropolitan University.