Sky newsreader and Tesco CEO among guests as Horsham pupils enjoy leadership day

Award winning newsreader Jeremy Thompson with Collyer's students
Award winning newsreader Jeremy Thompson with Collyer's students

Staff and students at a Horsham college were treated to a once in a lifetime day of inspiration.

Collyer’s received a donation of thousands of pounds worth of tickets which let them take part in the 2018 Leadership Symposium, sponsored by charities Working Options in Education, and Grocery Aid.

Top CEOs, entrepreneurs and personalities came together to offer talks and question panels in a high level business event at the Rothamsted Research Centre, Harpenden.

Lucy Hargreaves employability programme co-ordinator at Collyer’s, who organised the trip was thrilled.

She said: “This kind of access to top-level business people is such a privilege.

“The kind donation of thousands of pounds worth of tickets for this event made this a wonderful opportunity for our students!”

Presenters on the day included: Dave Lewis (CEO of Tesco), Debbie Robinson (MD of Spar), Christine Tacon (Groceries Code adjudicator), Douglas Lamont (CEO of Innocent Drinks), television personality Piers Morgan (who appeared via a pre-recorded interview) and more.

The event was expertly facilitated by Sky News presenters Jeremy Thompson and Anna Botting.

Lucy added: “We work very closely with Working Options in Education, who have run numerous workshops with Collyer’s, and we are incredibly grateful to them for their generosity. They are an amazing organisation.”

The students learnt about the inspiring stories and leadership philosophies of these captains of industry, who also generously took time to chat and offer best advice to students in networking sessions, which took place during breaks between the main presentations.

Deputy principal Steve Martell, who teaches the highly regarded employability programme at Collyer’s, was delighted. He added: “I am incredibly proud of our students, who made a very positive impression indeed.

“They bravely asked questions, networked intelligently and really impressed some of our country’s very top business people. They really were a credit to Collyer’s and West Sussex.”

Director of HE and progression at Collyer’s, Ian McAlister said: “Huge thanks to Lucy Hargreaves, as without her, this incredible trip would not have been possible. We also owe a massive debt of thanks to the amazing Lauren Monk and the team at Working Options for their superb support of our employability work.

“The speakers today were truly inspiring and on our students talked about them throughout our long journey back to Horsham!”