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News > General > L6 Women & the Workplace careers breakfast

L6 Women & the Workplace careers breakfast

Last week’s ‘Women and the Workplace’ event was timely and inspirational for our Lower Sixth students, as they start their journey towards choosing universities and degrees. These choices can seem intimidating – students’ main concern being “what if I pick the wrong course?” By talking about their own careers, and how they navigated the process our Lower Sixth are currently going through, our alumnae panellists offered messages of hope and empowerment.

Lucy Kerr (Senior Advisor, BMA), Rupa Patel (qualified dentist and Executive Director of Day Lewis Pharmacy), Annabel Lovegrove (Project Manager, ANSR) and Flic Carr (Acquisition Marketing Manager, Virgin Red) have all followed highly successful career pathways, but quite often ‘squiggly’ ones, with unexpected twists and turns - including some bumps - along the way. Each of them was keen to point out that challenges and barriers are bound to be encountered in every career, and having the right mindset to deal with these is crucial to progress. In every difficult situation, we should look for new opportunities, as well as be honest with ourselves and reflect on what we could do better next time around. All our speakers had also encountered unexpected opportunities and urged students to look out for these and seize them, whether or not they felt like the comfortable or safe option at the time. Taking risks and challenging yourself, rather than staying in your comfort zone, was felt to be a great way to accelerate your career, often in unplanned ways.

Whatever their personal career aspirations, the students all agreed that the morning had been very motivating as well as helpful. They left feeling that, wherever they are in terms of making decisions about their future, our Lower Sixth have plenty to work with, while also recognising that plans often change, so not having a fixed idea of one’s future career can be a good thing. Opportunities are out there to be seized and might be missed if one is too attached to a narrow pathway. 

From an higher education point of view, it’s interesting to see the current uptick in interest and applications for combined and liberal arts degrees, as Woldingham students seek to keep all options open for as long as possible. Several speakers shared a message we often repeat in school: the most important thing is to choose a degree you will enjoy and do well at. Opportunities, and decisions, can come later.

Our students had prepared very well for the event, giving an excellent introduction and vote of thanks. The roving mic ensured that everyone the opportunity to ask searching questions of the panellists, who responded with great generosity and insight. Thank you to our panellists for giving their time to help our Lower Sixth students engage with these life-changing ideas.

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