Meet Jennifer Grace, Events Coordinator for the Guildford & District branch
When did you join the ESU?
I joined the Guildford & District branch in late 2018/early 2019.
The branch had formerly been run by a beloved teacher I had had growing up (Lori Winch-Johnson), and Michelle Williams, another beloved teacher from my secondary school, had recently taken over as chair. I was approached by Michelle to help her out with some MC’ing for the upcoming ESU-Churchill Public Speaking Competition. From there I just fell back in love with what the ESU does for young people, and Michelle’s desire to expand and diversify the branch resonated with me.
What is your role?
Technically I’m the Events Coordinator, but I do as much as I can to work alongside Michelle and assist her as chairperson in anyway. I’m really enjoying it – I love the variety of all our events and competitions, and I have particularly enjoyed hearing from the young people at the PSC on Zoom.
What words of advice do you have for other alumni/young members?
The ESU really does want to help support its members and alumni, it’s not just a case of doing one competition and that’s it. So I would always advise keeping in touch, updating your local ESU branch on what you’ve been up to, and going to events. You don’t realise just how much the skills you learn from the ESU permeate all aspects of your professional life!
Whom do you admire and why?
My father. He is a very hard-working man from the outskirts of Glasgow, who really inspired my love of language and the art of oracy from a young age. He has built a brilliant career for himself and regularly demonstrates to me the power of the spoken word and the importance of being a confident public speaker and orator.
What’s your guiltiest pleasure?
Binge watching the same three TV shows over and over again.
Tell us something surprising about you
I was on the news in New York for hula hooping at the age of seven.
What’s the most important lesson life has taught you?
You never stop learning. So always be prepared to learn from everyone, especially those younger than you. The younger generations are so much smarter than so many people give them credit for.