In this guest blog Nicole Agyekum, a member of the Rockwell cohort for this year’s Patchwork Foundation Masterclass Series, explains the benefits of the programme and why she would encourage others to #GetInvolved.
Taking part in the Patchwork Masterclass, as part of the Rockwell cohort, over the last ten months, has been an unforgettable experience.
Being able to have direct access to senior decision makers and industry leaders has been a privilege that has taught me a great deal about leadership and success. Through opportunities such as lessons from public speaking coaches and chairing masterclasses I have seen myself, along with my fellow Patchworkers, transform in confidence and ability.
Throughout the experience I have been able to visit a number of prestigious venues such as City Hall, the United States Embassy and even 10 Downing Street. My highlight was learning from the diverse range of speakers who shared their career experiences and offered great advice on overcoming adversity.
No two Masterclasses were the same and with every class I gained a new perspective, insight and significantly widened my political knowledge. A particular highlight was meeting BBC journalist Mishal Hussain who advised me on the most effective ways to overcome ‘imposter syndrome’ in addition to sharing her experience as a woman of colour in her industry.
The Patchwork Masterclass, delivered thanks to Rockwell, has enabled me to develop confidence in networking and allowed me to meet a number of amazing young people with similar interests to me. This network was instrumental in enabling me to secure an internship at a political communications consultancy after graduating this summer. Although I am sad that the Masterclass has come to an end, I am confident that I will continue to be a part of the Patchwork family through the Alumni network.
My advice for anyone interested in applying to be on the Patchwork Masterclass Programme is to go for it! The experience will provide you with rare opportunities to engage with leaders and change makers and, demystify the world of UK politics. You don’t have to be the perfect candidate and, in fact, the Programme is committed to personal development and are looking for those who are keen to learn and improve.
It has been a privilege to meet so many inspirational people and learn so much about the nature of politics and the ways in which I can effectively contribute to society. It was also amazing to see the faith that each Masterclass tutor had in us as future leaders.
I would like to thank Rockwell Property for facilitating and being actively involved in such a rewarding experience. I will take the lessons with me in my career journey and beyond. I’d encourage others to get involved and do the same.