Ruby Gives Sixth Formers the Full Wax

Comedienne is star guest at the annual sixth form conference

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Comedienne, actress and TV presenter Ruby Wax was the star guest at the annual sixth form conference, hosted and supported by Hammersmith & Fulham Council.

The former Royal Shakespeare Company actress, best known for her no-holds-barred celebrity interviews, gave students the inside story of her life on the stage and in the media when she appeared as the keynote speaker at "Inspirations for the Future" which took place last week.. 

Ruby Wax told the gathering of about 300 sixth formers from local state and independent schools "Do what you want to do, not what the guy next to you wants you to do. If there's a difference between what you really, really want and what you are trying to achieve you will end up paying a lot of money to psychiatrists."

The conference, which also featured interactive workshops, was held as part of a scheme which enables students from state and independent schools to work together.

The participating sixth formers met leading professionals from the worlds of print and broadcast journalism, the film and TV industry, performing arts, music technology, law, medicine, nursing, physiotherapy, psychology, sports science (Vanessa Feltz's fitness trainer Dennis Duhaney ran this session), marketing, finance, the public and voluntary sectors.

The independent and state schools partnership includes two local state schools - the William Morris Sixth Form and Lady Margaret School and two local independent schools St Paul's Girls' School and Latymer Upper School as well as Ealing, Hammersmith & West London College from the further education sector.

The young people share computer facilities to produce multi-media presentations on current affairs, including global environmental issues as well as business and career-related subjects.

The partnership conference, to which sixth formers in Hammersmith & Fulham and Ealing are invited, gives young people the opportunity to broaden their knowledge and skills while working with students from a wide range of social backgrounds.

The independent and state schools partnership, which began in 1999, has gone from strength to strength and is a chance for students to share knowledge, experience and resources and get fired up about their future prospects. Since it began, the partnership has been supported by Hammersmith & Fulham Council with funding coming from a mixture of government and charity grants. Funding of £10,000 for 2006 has come from the London West Learning and
Skills Council.

Liz Walton, principal of the William Morris Sixth Form, said "The partnership offers valuable opportunities to high-flying students from William Morris. The practical teamwork and confidence-building sessions, the cultural and academic experiences provided make a significant difference to many of them."

Clarissa Farr, high mistress of St Paul's Girls' School, said "At St Paul's Girls' School we value the partnership for the benefit it brings to students in developing skills and even more for the opportunities and friendships which arise from working with our partner schools. It is a very worthwhile commitment for girls in their first year of A-level study."

Cllr Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler, cabinet member for education, said "This is a wonderful chance for the students to share knowledge, experience and resources. The partnership and the conference are a fantastic example of how the independent and state sectors can work together for the benefit of all the students who take part. Many thanks to the professionals who present the workshops - they really bring energy and imagination to the day so that students are engaged and fired up about life after further and higher education."


October 4, 2006