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News > School News > Speech Day 2018

Speech Day 2018

It was a delight and an honour to welcome Dame Carol Black, Newnham College's current Principal, to the School as our Guest Speaker for Speech Day.
12 Nov 2018
School News
Dame Carol spoke about women in Science, and, given her own background, she was delighted to hear and read about the strength of STEM subjects at Roedean. She told us that, as the first member of her family to go to university, she initially studied History, before changing direction completely and transferring to Medicine. It took great confidence for her to do this, but her decision was vindicated by her great successes and expertise, particularly specialising in scleroderma. With a number of girls in the audience grappling with a difficult choice to make about which subject to choose for university study, it was wonderful for them to hear that it really is fine to change tack. Her advice to the girls was to follow their passion, and be confident. Dressed in pillar-box red, Dame Carol spoke about projecting confidence, and how wearing red makes her feel stronger, and definitely better on a bad day.

As ever, the music was exceptional - the Strings played Vivaldi as the Staff and Platform Party processed. We were also treated to wonderful renditions of songs from the Greatest Showman and Annie Lennox, all of which complemented the presentation of prizes beautifully. It was fantastic to welcome back those girls who left last year, many of whom are now six weeks into their undergraduate courses at universities up and down the country. They are clearly enjoying this new stage of their lives, and our current girls loved hearing about what they are doing.

To end her talk, Dame Carol said, ‘I began life with one book in the house, the Bible. And on 1 September, I became Chair of the British Library.’ She is a perfect example of life being what you make of it. Dame Carol was both a wonderful role-model to the girls and one of the very best speakers we have had in recent years, and, as well as strengthening our relationship with Newnham, it was an honour to welcome her to Roedean.
 

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