St Matthew Academy Role Model Seminar

Group 2On Tuesday 2 February, Urban Synergy held its first seminar for 2016 at St Matthews Academy in Blackheath. Up to 25 role models from a variety of industries including Law, Media, Pharmaceuticals and Government shared their career insights and ‘top tips’ with the students.

The panel consisted of Anu Omideyi, Barrister Furnival Chambers and Choir Director (The Reapers Choir, BBC Songs of Praise Choir of the Year runners up) Adrian Grant, Producer of West End’s thrilling ‘Thriller Live’, Ebenezer Ademisoye, Founder and Principal Consultant at Advantage Technoeconomics and Olivia Jensen, Assistant to the Director of Communications and Politics at the Cabinet Office.

Also present was Baroness Howell of St David, and Neil Flanigan MBE, president of the West Indian Association of Service Personnel.

Panel Top Tips

Anu Omideyi, Barrister and Choir Director

Anu began her career as Barrister but recently followed her life’s passion and now dedicates her time to her successful choir, The Reapers Choir. Anu who is also a Motivational Speaker and Host has no regret becoming a Barrister as it was a rewarding, well paid and fulfilling career. Anu told the students that they are their best asset and that they should enjoy life as well as follow their dreams.

Adrian Grant – Producer of Thriller Live

Adrian said, ‘Don’t give up on your dreams, believe in yourself and the belief that you will achieve your dreams. Invest in your education, achieving your goals and you will succeed.

Ebenezer Ademisoye, Company Founder and Consultant

Ebenezer shared that he was good academically and loved teaching and coaching. Whilst in the USA he studied Artificial Intelligence and computer science. Experienced in investment banking – he worked for Shell – and became introduced to Technology/economics and moved subsequently moved on to Biotech pharmaceutical company.

Ebenezer said, ‘Life is a marathon, learn to enjoy the race, meet new people, get educated and achieve your goals. It’s ok to be a dreamer, dream big and work on your faith/spiritual life.

Olivia Jenson – Senior Executive assistant to Director of Communications and Politics

Olivia Graduated in History and Politics. She said, ‘Don’t be afraid of not knowing what career you want as long as you know yourself fully you’re aspirations.
Know what you want to do and what you are good at and use these skills to your advantage; it is fulfilling doing something you love as a career. Take every opportunity that is presented to you for your personal development.’

Special speaker- Baroness Howells of St David – House of Lords

The Baroness, a guest at the seminar, imparted her words of wisdom:

  • Root of your being is your upbringing
  • Be truthful to yourself and tell the truth
  • Be polite this will get you far
  • Be apologetic – sorry is the kindest word and leaves a great impression
  • Good Role Models give you hope and inspiration to become the Role Models of the future
  • Reading increases your knowledge, knowledge is a powerful thing
  • Why come second when you can come first
  • Your world is forever changing so be informed, read the newspaper regularly
  • Be successful in whatever you do and be the best you can be to succeed

Mentee Feedback

Ken Osivwemu taught me by never giving up and if you chase your dream you can become anything you want – Diego, 15 yrs

The reason why Adrian Grant inspired me is the way he reached his goals and how he defeated his barriers – I will work hard in school and dedicate all my time to working hard and studying – Calvin, 15 yrs

I learnt that hard work and patience are all it takes to be successful in achieving your goals – Danny, 16 yrs

I enjoyed the tips given by the role models – they were really useful – Shirvaughn, 15 yrs

I learnt that sometimes you have to have a thick skin. I may take a loss but I should not let that take me down completely – use it instead to go upwards – Igor, 16 yrs

I learnt not to limit myself in regards to the places I lack but to strive to be the best I can – Alex 15 yrs

Ebenezer and Anu inspired me as they are both young and successful and spoke about God and increasing your spiritual life – Marina, 15 yrs