We were delighted and honoured to be visited by Dame Laura Cox recently.
The Sixth Form attended a lecture during which Dame Laura talked about how important her school years were to her, showing her the value of hard work and determination but also of good luck and support. She has been a lifelong advocate for those who have been unable to articulate for themselves such as within human rights and employment law; she has received a lifetime achievement award from ‘Liberty’ and ‘Justice’ for her commitment to equality and human rights over 25 years at the Bar.
Year 12 pupil Charlotte was one of a small group then invited to our Networking Lunch where Dame Laura spoke individually to girls about their interest in the law as a career. Charlotte noted particularly the words of advice offered and how Dame Laura re-iterated the important of balance in your life, and how she feels she has been able to be so successful in her career because she has been surrounded by support.
Charlotte said: "I feel so lucky to have had the opportunity to meet such an inspirational woman. She had so much experience and advice and told us that respect is of the utmost importance, something she had realised early on in her career. As a High Court judge people might disagree with her decisions but if they respect them then that is her measure of success."
Girls were reminded to make sure their voice is heard, that women of the future should not have to accept or expect the struggles women had back in 1975, the year Dame Laura passed the Bar exam and the Sex Discrimination Act became law.
Following her lunch with the Sixth Form, Dame Laura was interviewed by Charlie and four girls in Year 10 interested in pursuing a career in law as part of the schools #womeninspirewomen project. The mentoring scheme involves a range of global alumnae and businesswomen. Women working across the world and at a senior level in the UK have given up their time to speak to pupils interested in their particular career path and area of expertise. The project places mentoring from experts and professionals at the heart of Queen’s pupils’ learning, helping them to develop transferable skills to be ready for whatever the future holds for them. Using a mixture of face to face and videoconferencing interviews, pupils elect to interview specific women depending on their areas of interest. The interviews have been recorded and will be added to the bank of resources available in the school’s career library.