Mentees from the inaugural Fast Forward 15 mentoring programme celebrated with their mentors at a special graduation lunch at The Langham Hotel in London. The occasion also witnessed the unveiling of the ‘Class of ‘16’ mentees as the scheme enters its second year.
The event also saw high profile industry guests from agency and venue partners, charities, academic institutions, corporates and media, come together to acknowledge the achievements of the mentees over the course of the past year.
The audience heard that mentees had already achieved successes throughout the process, ranging from improved career prospects and promotions, through to increased levels of confidence and a greater understanding of professional goals.
Guest speaker, Steve Brown, provided plenty of inspiration and the London 2012 Paralympic wheelchair rugby captain is to join the Fast Forward 15 scheme as a mentor for 2016.
Brown received a standing ovation, after speaking candidly about his life changing injuries, how he became involved in the sport and the approach he takes as an athlete mentor.
Zibrant MD Fay Sharpe, founder of Fast Forward 15 told the audience she had seen the need for a scheme that mentored women across the events sector, given that they made up 75% of employees but just 10% of those in the boardroom. She congratulated all the graduates and said the scheme had surpassed its aims and objectives in the inaugural year. She said: “I am delighted to witness our first group of mentees graduate with flying colours.”
The 15 mentees had emerged from an original application list of 140.
Founding mentee, Hannah Coleman, logistics coordinator at WRG Creative Communication, added: “Fast Forward 15 has been an incredible experience, helping me realise and capitalise on my capabilities as well making life-long friends in the process.”
As well as one-to-one mentoring sessions the group achieved tasks including “A night of sparkle’ that involved a climb of the O2 in London which raised £3,500 for charity.
The full list of mentees who graduated were:
Catriona Ross – The Prince’s Trust
Selina Donal – The Bulb
Fleur Burrows-Jones – The National Theatre
Lauren Glynn – Harrow School Enterprises Ltd
Kate Furness – The Amateur Swimming Association
Laura Adams – Cievents
Hannah Coleman – WRG Creative Communication
Michelle Kibble – Communicate magazine
Emma North – Black Tomato Agency
Charlotte Wawrick – Silverstone Circuit
Tanya Dennis – MRO Network
Amy Seton – The Food and Drink Events Company
Libby Willetts – EMA Events
Rebecca Goodman – Ageas UK Limited