What Impact Could a Talk Have on Your Students?

3 November 2016

Half Term Reflections

One of the most frequently asked questions from teachers and schools is about the impact of a talk on students. Whilst every single speaker in our network has a wealth of experience to share with any student audience, we understand the importance of highlighting what’s being said about talks that have recently taken place and how they can fit into the wider remit of inspiring students and broadening horizons.

Schools can be offered the chance to host a speaker at any point in the year and we’ve collated some teacher and student feedback here.

Every Speakers for Schools talk is different but our experience shows that the majority fit into 5 themes; Life Lessons & Advice, Industry Workings, Future Citizens, Expert Insights & Challenging the Status Quo – more detailed information about these themes can be found here. The feedback is grouped based on these themes.

Life Lessons & Advice


 Samira Sohail at Onslow St Audrey’s School

Student Feedback -‘It was refreshing to hear about someone who has managed to achieve so much in their life – academically, personally and professionally. I feel inspired to go and live my life to the fullest’

Teacher Feedback – ‘The words of wisdom and advice Samira shared with the students was so very valuable and relevant.  I was personally overwhelmed by Samira’s determination to succeed and her fight to strive for her passions and dreams.’



Steve Brookman at Collingwood College

Teacher Feedback – ‘The students were very interested to hear how Steve had come from a relatively poor background and become a successful businessman and leader. The students who are often hard to engage found him particularly inspirational and his talk made an impact on them.’

Students said: “Absolutely inspirational speech, made me want to achieve more” “He was inspirational in speaking about his life”

Industry Workings


Robert Forrester at Emmanuel College

Teacher Feedback – The highlight of the talk was ‘the manner in which Mr Forrester was able to describe the dynamic interactions between investors and company leaders…The questions student found themselves asking as a result of Mr Forrester’s talk certainly are testimony to how he stimulated debate and discussion. It is significant that students continued debating his ideas even after the event. The student publications editors have decided to write an article on his talk and were particularly interested in how the automotive industry needs to recruit more women into the industry.’

John Perry at Gordon’s School

Teacher Feedback – ‘Students really enjoy guest speakers coming into school and sharing their experiences, particularly when they are experts/have experience of particular areas. Our speaker, John Perry, gave an excellent talk about whether the lessons of the 2008 Financial Crisis have been fully learnt or not. Students could apply this talk back to their A Level Studies in Economics and Business. John also gave a detailed talk about a career in banking and finance, which was well received by students, particularly about the pro’s and con’s of working in the industry.’

Future Citizens


Lord (Terry) Burns at Crickhowell High School

Teacher Feedback – ‘Feedback from students was excellent. They were engaged throughout and asked lots of questions particularly about Brexit. The highlight was Lord Burns’ knowledge and understanding of current affairs, politics, economics and finance which opening their eyes to the vast opportunities available nationally when some have never ventured out of the area.’



Rita Clifton CBE at Newlands Girls’ School
Teacher Feedback – ‘I thought the way the speaker spoke to the girls was pitched just right and all came away with a valuable insight into making the most of their future both in their working and social lives. All came away looking at ways to improve the image of themselves that they portray.’

Expert Insights


David Evans at Aldridge School

Teacher Feedback – ‘David went above and beyond in supporting the work of our students and his passion for TV/Film really came across. Prior to the visit David liaised with the Media department to find out more about the course we teach. David was keen to support a smaller group of our students after the talk which we were very grateful for. 6 students were also able to act out a small scene from Downton Abbey while David offered direction and these students relished this opportunity. Several students stayed behind to talk to David about careers in acting, film and script writing.’

Challenging the Status Quo


Stephen King at The St Thomas the Apostle College

Teacher Feedback – ‘Stephen’s honest story about his career progression and the depth at which he was able to talk about current economic issues posed by the students.’

Student Feedback – ‘All the things we have learned in class makes sense’, ‘Sometimes you need to be realistic about what you are good at instead of dreaming, and you can always go back to your dream later in life’.