The Pocklington School Foundation (PSF) Careers and Business Network held its latest event in Leeds recently, with the focus for the evening on careers in business and law. Hosted at the city centre offices of Schofield Sweeney LLP, the guest speakers for the evening were OPs Jodie Hill (00-06) and David Strachan (67-77).
Jodie trained as a barrister and then cross qualified to become a solicitor. Having specialised in employment law and mental health from a very early stage in her career, Jodie launched Thrive Law in March 2018 and is leading a national campaign to make Mental Health First Aiders compulsory in the workplace.
David is a partner at Schofield Sweeney and a highly experienced corporate lawyer. His practice largely comprises acquisitions and disposals of businesses, joint ventures, fundraisings, commercial contracting and advice on constitutional issues. David advises many companies in a range of sectors. He frequently lectures on law and regulation affecting companies, and on corporate governance.
The event was attended by a mix of former and current students, plus parents and governors of Pocklington School. Toby Seth, Headmaster hosted a fascinating Q&A session with the speakers, who spoke of the reasons they chose to work in the legal profession and the challenges and opportunities they had encountered.
David shared with guests his insights into the many aspects of working in corporate law, and the satisfaction derived from helping businesses, and their owners, grow and develop over the years. Jodie gave a candid account of the personal challenges she had faced working in the legal profession, how she overcame those challenges to launch her own successful law firm and how she is determined to make her national campaign a success.
Sixth Form student, Hebe Quinney, said: “I am so pleased I attended this event and was able to listen to David and Jodie. They were both inspirational and it was fascinating to hear how their careers had developed and the types of things they are involved with. Having the opportunity to chat to Jodie after the Q&A session was fantastic and she immediately offered me some work experience with her law firm in the summer, which is an amazing opportunity for me.”
Toby Seth, Headmaster, commented: “Two aspects of the Careers and Business Network offer me enormous encouragement. First, the chances to meet and network with Old Pocklingtonians (OPs) and their associates offer our students incredible opportunities to further their own knowledge and preparation for life beyond Pocklington.
Second, it is inspirational to hear about the work of OPs who celebrate and continue to live up to our own core values of Courage, Truth and Trust. Both David and Jodie reflected on this in the course of their discussions and both recognised just how much Pocklington School did to prepare them for their successful careers.”
The PSF Careers and Business Network is open to everyone in the wider Pocklington School community, including current and former parents, Old Pocklingtonians, current and former staff and supporters. Its aims are to help each other thrive in a highly competitive world and, by working together, to help inspire our students, and each other, for life.
The next event is in London on 14 May, with the focus on digital strategy and ecommerce. Further details to be announced soon.