[Brad Johnson | Deputy Editor]
In the first of our new Meet the Lecturer features, we meet Dr Allan Jepson, a senior lecturer in the Business School and researcher in Event Studies.
Jepson referred to himself as an “average student” during his childhood; who had to work hard to achieve the grades he wanted. Following his early school career, Jepson decided he wanted to change paths and not stay on at sixth form; a decision that surprised his former teachers. Jepson decided to move to Broxtowe College and study a BTEC GNVQ in Leisure and Tourism, a decision that potentially kicked started his whole career. Following a successful time at college, Jepson then went on to study a BA (Hons) Tourism and European Studies followed by a MSc in Tourism Marketing and Communications and finally his PhD in Tourism back at his BA (Hons) university, Derby.
When asked why Events Management and Tourism was a passion, Jepson explained how it is a “constantly evolving and changing field of study” which links to many other fields of study, making it “very interesting and unique”. This passion for the subject is displayed through his academic teaching and numerous published research documents.
One question that many ask their lecturers is what they did before becoming a lecturer. Jepson’s career has been both varied and global. His first role was secured surprisingly by accident while in the United States; becoming a Sponsorship and Corporate Hospitality coordinator for the White Marlin Open. Following his Masters, he described how he “blagged a job” at the Nottingham City Council which allowed him to introduce children to art as well as participate in arts and cultural festivals within the county. As part of his role, Jepson got the opportunity to work on both regional and national events.
After a while, Jepson was persuaded by influential people around him into the world of academia to begin research for his PhD. Jepson’s research was based on his experience within the industry as he realised that festival producers and governments were failing the reach some segments of the community.
Amazingly, Jepson’s area of study was also an area of interest for his undergraduate and postgraduate dissertation supervisor Alan Clarke. In a typical student encounter, Jepson met Clarke in the Students’ Union pub while watching his favourite team, Nottingham Forest, play.
Who would have thought that an undergraduate dissertation supervisor could have become not only a mentor, but a future friend and now research writing partner on their book ‘Exploring Community Festivals and Events’? Yes, this is a plug for the book and modestly Jepson stated, “it’s dead good, honest!”
Jepson is a true family guy and when not enriching the academic lives of his students, he is at home “spoiling [his] wife Joanna because she is the most amazing person [Jepson] has ever met.”
Jepson is also the very proud father to his two sons Henry and Freddie whom his students are always kept posted on. Jepson is also a bit of fitness fanatic and often goes trail running with his black Labrador Maggie, as well playing football and supporting his team, Nottingham Forest.
In the future, Jepson wants to continuing supporting his family and give “[his] boys a great childhood like [he] had.”
Academically, Jepson would love to achieve the status of Professor in Event Studies. Jepson praised the inspirational people that he gets to work with on a daily basis while at the university, notably this is not just fellow staff but the students he gets the pleasure to teach on a daily basis.
The final thing we asked Jepson was if he had any advice to give to students at the university. He gave three simple points:
Read around your subjects, I learnt a lot reading books I probably should not have been reading!
Never give up on anything, if you want something you have to work for it
Treat people equally and with respect, you never know when you might need them or what you can learn from them
In summary, I can honestly say that most Event Management students Jepson has taught would tell us that he is one of the most genuine and helpful lecturers at the university, who will go above and beyond to develop his students. Jepson can make the most tedious topics within the subject interesting and engaging; the Business School would not be the same if Jepson was to move away or leave the world of academia.
If you think we should meet one of your lecturers, let us know @TridentMediaUK!
Get in touch with Allan (@DrAllanJepson) and take a look at his research.