Kirsty joined Langley in 2009 and left in 2013 with A-Levels in Psychology, English Literature, and Drama and Theatre Studies. In this interview we find out the important things that Kirsty took from her school years and the path that she has forged for herself since then.
During school, did you know what career you wanted to pursue?
I thought I did, but I changed direction throughout my time at Langley. I was fortunate to be taught by some excellent teachers and make lifelong friends, and all the experiences of being at a school like Langley really helped shape me during my formative years. The culture at Langley encourages students to get involved with every possible activity. As a result, I had a wide range of interests at school, enjoying sport and drama and, at A-Level, I particularly enjoyed Psychology, which I had originally planned to study at degree level.
Which of Langley’s extra-curricular activities were you involved in?
I was into sports during my time at Langley and was in the 1st team for hockey – the school provides excellent sporting facilities. I was also passionate about drama, enjoying spending time in our theatre and I was involved in school plays. A Midsummer Night’s Dream was a highlight for me, I played Hermia and a few of my closest friends were also involved in this production. I look back fondly on the rehearsals and the time spent learning lines!
Have these activities helped you since school?
Absolutely. I believe that the extra-curricular activities Langley offered provided me with a great deal of transferrable skills, which I have carried forward into adult life. The structure of the school day ensures the extra-curricular activities are just as important as time spent in the classroom. This gives every pupil the opportunity to explore sport, the arts and other pursuits, which I think is so important. After all, these soft skills are what make you stand out in the job market. I believe the activities offered at Langley provide a well-rounded, holistic education. On a personal level, my involvement in Drama and Theatre Studies helped my confidence, and the team sports I was involved in required good teamwork / leadership and communication skills. There were so many other activities I was interested in and asked to get involved with including debating, but I was spoilt for choice and couldn’t commit to everything due to there simply not being enough hours in the day!
What did you study at university?
After taking a gap year, my interest in psychology and business resulted in me studying a Marketing degree at university – I loved it and achieved a first class honours degree from Anglia Ruskin, Cambridge.
What have been your post-school highlights?
So far, a career highlight has been my recent promotion. I work for RSM, the world’s sixth largest independent firm of chartered accountants and business advisers, looking after business development and marketing across East Anglia and our wider region. I work with an amazing group of partners, directors and staff so to progress and have a great career path with a firm with more than 30 offices in the UK and around 3,650 staff has been something I am very proud of.
Did your time at Langley help your attitude towards career choices and progression?
Without a doubt. Langley formed the foundation that instilled in me a can-do attitude and striving for excellence in every task I undertake. Langley taught us about hard work, a positive attitude and goal setting, something which still underpins my ambition and career progression.
What advice you would give to students considering Langley, their A-Levels or careers?
If you have the opportunity to study at Langley, jump at the chance. If you are already studying A-Levels, enjoy every second and try not to get stressed or overwhelmed. My years at Langley and the memories made will stay with me forever and I know it is cliché, but, school days really are some of the best days of your life.
In regards to career, do not put pressure on yourself or feel obliged to pigeon-hole yourself, it is great to keep your options open for as long as possible if you are unsure what you want to do. A school like Langley gives you an amazing start in life, not only through the academic qualifications you obtain, but the people you meet, the opportunities you have and the well-rounded education provided.
What is your fondest memory of Langley?
The amazing people. During my time at Langley I made friends who are now like family to me. I was also taught by teachers that had a profound impact on me, who genuinely cared, and I feel so fortunate to have had such a brilliant education. I will be forever grateful for my time at Langley and everything I learnt during my very happy years there, in the classroom and in all the extra-curricular activities.