Blayne Cooper

Head of Talent Development

I originally trained as an actor and drama teacher at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and graduated with honours from the University of Wales in 1998. Settling into a teaching role I became one of the youngest Heads of Faculty in the UK (United Kingdom) at the age of 26. There I was able to build a highly renowned Performing Arts faculty that was nationally recognised with a silver and then gold Artsmark award. Looking to continually challenge myself I joined Pearson in 2014 leading the UK operational vocational team, supporting centres across the UK in delivering BTEC (Business and Technical Educational Council) Qualifications. During this role I led teams in both traditionally structured and matrix managed environments. In 2017, I moved into the Global Learning & Development team creating, overseeing, and assessing Pearson’s extensive L&D (Learning & Development) programs. Then in 2019, I joined Pearson College as a Degree Apprentice Mentor supporting both postgraduate and undergraduate degree apprentices on their programmes. I also lecture in people management and leadership. I have continued the theme of lifelong learning within my own career, gaining accreditation as an assessor through the University of Durham and more recently becoming an Associate member of the Chartered Institute of Personal Development.

In 2021, I became the Head of Talent Development for the college. This is a new role within the college reporting to the Director of Work Integrated Learning where I am:

  • responsible for the strategic direction of talent development across the business school and wider college; and
  • Growing the range of opportunities that our students must develop themselves professionally liaising with the wider Pearson professional network and our industry partners.

I have responsibility for the college's Internship scheme that aims to provide all students with the opportunity to develop and practice their professional skills with a range of start-ups, SME's, and corporate ventures. Mentorship and coaching continue to be a key part of my role, ensuring that students can be supported throughout their studies as well as professionally challenged. Leading the MBM (Master s in Business Management) (Master s in Business Management) Executive Coaching programme.