New skills course piloted to prepare student for life, work and citizenship
5 April 2022
Over the first two weeks of the Easter vacation, 10 second-year undergraduates participated in our first ‘Head, Hand & Hertford’ course.
Led by Principal Tom Fletcher, the aim of the pilot programme was to help our students build the skills they need for life, work and citizenship outside of academia. From the big questions – like how to find purpose and how to understand power – to practical sessions on making an impact and public speaking, the cohort considered the skills they need in the 21st century. They were joined throughout the course by a range of excellent guest speakers, including a former Olympian, Britain’s youngest ever Black female ambassador, a former senior spy chief, a FTSE100 CEO, and an Afghan refugee and literacy activist.
“I valued the opportunity to meet a variety of speakers and ask them questions,” commented one participant, “it was comforting to know that even highly successful people have struggled with finding direction, resilience and keeping true to their values.” Other students highlighted the flexibility of the course and the opportunity to work collaboratively with their peers from a range of degree subjects, saying “I particularly enjoyed the way the curriculum was designed around the topics we wanted to cover.”
Following feedback and evaluation, we plan to make the Head, Hand & Hertford course one of the first projects undertaken by the new John Porter Centre for Diplomacy.