In October 2013, Speakers for Schools hosted its first national campaign and talk series, featuring top ambassador speakers giving talks across the UK, from all industries and political backgrounds as a call to action for further leading figures to give their time through the charity.
We also released the results of research into the opinions and ambitions of students for their future. The research showed that whilst most students were anxious about their future, the majority believed that hard work would allow them to achieve anything in life.
The research asked state school students aged 15 to 18, and their teachers, to assess how growing up in a recession had affected their aspirations.
The research findings were the subject of a Speakers for Schools Question Time debate which was held on Thursday, 10th October 2013 at Bishop Challoner School in London and was streamed live to schools across the country. Making up the panel were Sir Charles Dunstone, Jamal Edwards and Helena Morrissey, with BBC Business Editor and Speakers for Schools founder Robert Peston chairing.
The event marked the launch of Speakers for Schools Week – which saw Prime Minister David Cameron and leaders in business, the arts, technology, science and sports give talks in state schools across the country to inspire and motivate young people on the topic of ‘What Inspires You’.
Andrew Law, Chairman of the Speakers for Schools Board of Trustees, returned to his old school Cheadle Hulme High in Manchester during the Week, to share his story. He said:
“Young people today face many challenges and this research shows that, while remaining optimistic about their futures, many lack the confidence to aim high and unlock their full potential. That’s why I’m so excited about Speakers for Schools Week, because it provides a high-profile snapshot of what we do at the charity all year round: mobilising inspiring and successful leaders from a wide range of disciplines to give talks in schools across the country, motivating the next generation of British success stories”.
Robert Peston, the founder of Speakers for Schools, said:
“The more confident and ambitious our young people can become, the better placed Britain will be to meet the profound economic challenges ahead. Which is why I am thrilled that more and more top people are responding to Speakers for Schools’ invitation to them to inspire and motivate students in state schools.”
Each year Speakers for Schools runs a national talk series in state schools on a topic important to both young people and our speakers — to see more themes and talk series over the years see our Campaigns Page.