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14 September

Dramatics, Travelling, Inspiring and Reuniting

Five Years On

The 8th September saw us joined by the year of 2013 for their 5 Year Reunion. The OVs, along with their parents, enjoyed a drinks reception in The Michael Baker Boathouse where the opportunity to catch up with former friends and teachers was a huge success. Liz and Sophie from the Development & Alumni Relations Office were delighted to meet the OVs and to hear about their lives and careers five years after leaving King’s. Headmaster, Matthew Armstrong, welcomed the group back and spoke a few words on King’s today. We were so happy that former Headmaster Tim Keyes, who the year of 2013 knew as their Head, could join us. The year of 2013 were particularly happy to hear their Head of School, Ben Alexander, give a short address which humorously reflected on the comments in their Year Book. The reunion far overran the intended finish time, and it is understood the celebrating and joviality continued into Worcester until the early hours!

Rowing Motivation

Alex Styles (W 08-15) came back to meet current King’s rowers this week. Alex was able to speak of her pride at representing Great Britain at the World University Championships in Shanghai this summer. Alex studies at Oxford Brookes University and she competed in the Lightweight Women’s Double with crewmate Fiona Chestnutt at the prestigious competition where they placed a very respectable 6th.

Alex was able to pass on lots of valuable insights and advice and spoke especially of the resilience and determination you need to succeed, and how each and every knock back should be taken as an exciting opportunity to improve. Alex spoke especially highly of the coaching and facilities available at King’s and encouraged all the rowers to make the very most of their time here. She also said how the coaches at King’s still keep in touch and lend support and encouragement to her today.

Alex also spent time on the water with some of the crews, lending huge support, motivation and inspiration to them all. Thank you Alex!

A Triumphant Theatrical Tragedy

We were so pleased to hear about a recent Theatre performance by Rhys Harris Clarke (O 12-17) who appeared in Malvern Theatres Young Company performance of Antigone. The show opened in Malvern and then toured to the Edinburgh Fringe for six performances at theSpace on the Mile. Malvern Theatres Young Company formed in 2012 has the aim of giving aspiring young performers aged 16-24 the opportunity to work in a professional theatre environment and Rhys has been a part of several of the previous productions, including Les Miserables, Our Town, The Crucible and Guys and Dolls. Antigone received rave reviews in Malvern and Edinburgh, and we were so thrilled to see Rhys perform so convincingly as The Soldier, where he perfectly combined the appropriate level of tragedy with an individual and at times humorous twist. Bravo Rhys.

Gap Year Inspiration

A pleasure to have OVs Kaushik Rai (Br 09-16), Maha Munir (Br 10-17), Sam Walker (Ch 10-17) & Duncan Drew (S 10-17) back this week to share their gap year experiences with current U6.

Kaushik was able to tell us all about his year where he travelled around India following the Trail of Rama, and also his time in Cameroon, where he volunteered helping put water systems in place amongst many other things. He said how much he enjoyed the experience of travelling alone and showed some incredible photographs of the places he had been and people he had met.

Maha spent her gap year in London, gaining professional experience. She was part of the Business Development team at a professional services firm called AlphaSights, at the London headquarters. Maha was able to give an overview of living on her own for the first time in a big city, and passed on how delighted she was to have gained some real office experience. She was also pleased to have used the year to re-apply to her first choice University, Cambridge, and she looks forward to starting there in September having been successful in her application.

Sam Walker worked for the first part of his year to supplement the Robert Harley award which he received as he left King’s. Sam enjoyed a trip to Montreal, Canada, where he worked on a bird conservation project. Sam chose to live with a local family whilst there which he recommended thoroughly as a good way to settle in to a new country, and he amused us all with his story of how different Quebec French was to that which he learned here at King’s!

Duncan Drew went to Malvern College, Cairo, in his gap year. He spoke of the blistering heat and the warmth of the people he met. Duncan, who is going to study Arabic at University, used his time there to fully immerse himself in the language, and whilst teaching English to children there, he also practiced his Arabic with the security guards outside his apartment regularly. He explained that when planning his gap year, he had never planned to go to Cairo, however when the opportunity presented itself, via another OV, he jumped at the chance to go.

The U6 were so happy to hear all the different gap year stories, and all staff and students listening to the talks were itching to get on a plane by the end of the session!