I had the pleasure to speak to the 2016 Peter Jones Enterprise Academy Graduates at the Graduation Ceremony at Freemasons Hall, London. As well as speaking to the graduates I also had the privilege to speak in-front His Royal Highness Prince Andrew, Duke of York and also Peter Jones CBE himself.
Being at the Peter Jones Academy will always be the highlight of my journey, I learnt so much and met some incredible people and not to forget the incredible support I received from people such as my mentors, business manager, the Peter Jones Academy & Foundation. My graduation speech echoed exactly this along with things I learnt over the year and things that the graduates should always remember as they move forward on their journey.
Written transcript of my speech:
“We young people are the future.”
I’m really honoured to be here to see the class of 2016 entrepreneurs graduate. Especially, since I was sat in the same place as you guys, just last year.
I can hand on heart say my time at the Peter Jones Enterprise Academy was the best time of my life so far and has also played such an important and valuable role in my journey to become who I am today.
I was actually quite sceptical about joining the academy at first in terms of developing my business, but at the same time I was excited, I knew I was going to be part of something amazing, something different and something truly entrepreneurial…
I received support from the academy, especially Shazia, my business manager, before I even officially enrolled!
I was able to join business groups, help start and steer a new youth organization with the local council, totally rebrand my business, get funding, network, and land huge clients such as the University of Greenwich & the British College of Business. And I also had the opportunity to be a TEDx speaker at the age 18!
This was all thanks to the opportunities that I received through the academy. And I really hope that you took the opportunities that the academy gave you and also went out and found your own. It’s important to find & seize any opportunities whichever come your way.
Today is the day you reflect on how far you have come, the things you’ve achieved, and the experiences you’ve created with the people around you.
This is just the start; we young people are the future of the British Economy, the future of tomorrow. Today you’ve officially got the skills to now go out there and build your dreams.
It’s your chance for you and your business to make a difference.
After graduating I made the difficult decision to go to University. Doing this whilst I was running my business was very challenging and it still is, but that’s what makes us different.
We’re entrepreneurs, we love challenges, we feed off it.
I’m not going to stand here and lie, for me, being an entrepreneur has been really difficult as I have had to overcome so many challenges,; there have been times where I was at my lowest point and wanted to just quit.
However, there is no better feeling or job than running your own business. I learnt that I had to overcome these challenges to understand that there are two outcomes. One is a lesson and the other is an opportunity.
Challenges & failure are only temporary, don’t let them stop you accomplishing whatever you want to do. Today is your day and the future is yours.