Godalming College was very proud to welcome back alumni Isabel Hardman as the guest speaker for their Let’s Celebrate event on Tuesday evening where awards were presented to 129 students for either their outstanding achievement or for effort and determination on their course, others won memorial prizes or awards for their contribution to the college or wider community.
Isabel Hardman was a student at Godalming College between 2002 and 2004 and has since carved out a successful career as a political journalist, writing for national newspapers, becoming Assistant Editor of the Spectator, Editor of the Coffee House Blog and appearing on political televisions shows such as Andrew Marr, Newsnight, Have I Got News for You and the Radio 4s The Week in Westminster. She is about to become an author as her book ‘Why We Get the Wrong Politicians’ is published on 6th September, it will be followed by a second book ‘The Natural Heath Service’.
Isabel described her time at Godalming and how the memories of College stand-out for her amongst other things that she has experienced since. She described her time at College by saying ‘those years are so very dear to me’. She felt that she learnt to believe in herself and work hard for the things that she felt were important. Isabel went on to provide an insight into her time at university and her first job and how she wholeheartedly embraced everything that was offered, giving advice to today’s students about joining the workforce and how to be successful.
The retiring president of the Student Union at Godalming College, Konstantina Nouka congratulated all the students for getting through two years of College and celebrated the end of what she called ‘an interesting chapter in our lives’. It was an emotion provoking speech ending with encouragement to dream big and ‘look up to the stars’ as Stephen Hawking had once said. She thanked the students for sharing two unforgettable years and wished everyone a very prosperous future.
The evening itself was very warm as students and parents gathered to enjoy Pimms and canapé whilst being entertained by the Godalming College Jazz Band. The Performing Arts students performed a dance, ‘Paradiddle’ before guests took their seats for the main event. Musical interludes included, Will Rowling on Marimba playing ‘Rain Dance by Alice Gomez’ and Toby Anderson on Cello (accompanied by Mrs Anderson on Keyboard) performing The Swan by Saint Saens.
Emma Young, Principal of Godalming College said ‘The Let’s Celebrate event is always a wonderful evening when we share the incredible achievements of our students; some who have a special talent in their subjects, and others who have worked incredibly hard despite obstacles that have come their way. We have had the pleasure of hearing from one of our past students, Isabel Hardman, who is clearly an inspiration. We wish all our students leaving us this year a happy and successful future. We hope that they will look back on their time at Godalming College fondly, and that their experience here provides them with the confidence to progress onto their next step, whether that be employment, higher education or a gap year.’