At Isaac Newton Academy our aim is to equip students with the knowledge, learning power and character necessary for success at university and beyond. The Speakers’ Programme will support the mission as a mechanism to:

  • Inspire our students through hearing about the journey taken by the speaker to their current role.
  • Understand the roles that BRIDGES characteristics play in lifelong success.
  • Develop a curiosity and openness around professions and cultural experiences that might not sit with their chosen KS5 subjects.
  • Learn more about universities, different careers or new topics.


Past Speakers


Ranjit Sond

Ranjit Sond Ranjit Sond, a solicitor and President of the Society of Asian Lawyers, spoke to our Year 12 students as part of our Speakers’ Programme. He spoke about various aspects of law, and his own particular route to his current position. Having spent twenty years focused on Personal Injury Law, Ranjit has recently begun working in the area of internet law and social media. He deals with online defamation, online harassment, false online reviews and complaints. The students were very interested to hear about his journey into law as well as some interesting and complex cases he had worked on.


Joe McKinney

Joe McKinney Our speaker for Tuesday 1st May was Joe McKinney from St Andrew’s University. Joe is an alumnus of St Andrew’s himself, having first attended a summer school there through the Sutton Trust and then graduated with a degree in Mathematics. Joe spoke about the key point of difference between Scottish and English/Welsh universities being the course structure. Having only graduated very recently himself, Joe was able to speak with considerable enthusiasm about university life at St Andrew’s) and traditions that universities in Scotland offer the students.


Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley Tarun Sharma, Ria Devor and Selina Wilson from Morgan Stanley came to speak to our Sixth Form students as part of the Speakers’ Programme. The guest speakers spoke about themselves, investment banking, Morgan Stanley and possible careers. At the end of the talk, the students had some one-to-one conversations with our guests, which proved as useful as the presentation itself.


Jane Marshall

Jane Marshall Jane Marshall, Programme Manager for Imperial College’s Outreach Schools Visits, was our guest for the Speakers’ Programme on Tuesday 6th March. Her talk was called: Choosing a University and Writing a good Personal Statement. Jane shared lots of new insights into the process. Her delivery was so lively and engaging that even when some content was familiar to the students, it was still well-worth hearing Jane’s angle on it. In addition to coming to talk to the students, she kindly gave students a written document which covers the key advice on writing a personal statement.


Stuart Gordon

Stuart Gordon Stuart Gordon from Harvard University visited INA as part of the Speakers’ Programme. Stuart explained the process around applying to U.S. universities and how it differs from the UK higher education process. He explained the necessity of doing considerable amounts of research prior to choosing the colleges/universities to which students want to apply and gave students an overview regarding what US colleges are looking for in their applicants.


Lord Paddy Ashdown

Lord Paddy Ashdown Lord Ashdown shared some interesting stories about his career before hosting a Q&A session with the students. During the Q&A session, students asked questions about a variety of topics, including Brexit, his views on a coalition government, the UK voting system, property prices, women in politics, environmental challenges and the rise of anti-fascist groups such as Antifa. Read more about his visit here.


Alex Blower

Alex Blower Alex Blower, UK Student Recruitment and Outreach Officer from the University of Southampton, came to speak to our Year 12 students about the UCAS process and how to craft a personal statement that will catch the eye of the Admissions Team at a university.


Dr Joanna Marchant

Joanna Marchant Dr Joanna Marchant from KCL, spoke to our Sixth Form students about options to consider when choosing a degree course and a university. With 37,000 different degrees on offer, and hundreds of institutions in which to study, students have a huge variety of options available. Read more about her visit here.


Charlie Dark

Charlie Dark Charlie is a DJ, Producer, Poet, Teacher, Night-runner, Founder of Run Dem Crew and Brand Consultant with a wide range of skills and interests. Given his background, he could have talked to the Sixth Form about any number of topics, but in the end his chosen topic was ‘encouragement’.            

Charlie spoke of how certain demands and expectations can make us feel pressurised sometimes, but these high expectations should not be seen as negative as it allows us to challenge ourselves and ‘raise our game’. Read more about his visit here.


Cyril Moloney

Cyril Moloney Cyril calls himself a ‘curious’, rather than an ‘electrical’ engineer, and during his talk he demonstrated that curiosity, along with his passion for learning, to our Sixth Form audience. Cyril has had to deal with health and learning challenges and it is a testament to his grit and hard work that from such a start he has gone on to attain a good degree, become a successful teacher and participated in the development of such a life-changing technology as MRI scanners. As well as talking to us about his work as an engineer and part-time lecturer, Cyril shared the story behind the development of some highly promising research being conducted in the field of cancer treatment, specifically chemotherapy. Read more about the visit here.

Local Councillors' Debate

Local Councillors’ Debate Isaac Newton Academy hosted a Question Time-style debate, where local councillors and figures from the community were invited to discuss the issues facing Ilford to celebrate Local Democracy Week. The Sixth Form learners put together a wide-ranging array of questions, covering both local and national issues and then were called up to ask them one by one. Topics covered included tougher penalties for those found guilty of acid attacks and what can be done to improve the proportion of women represented in politics.


Kuldip Singh, CEO of Mr Singh’s Sauce

Kuldip Singh The ‘Mr Singh’s Sauce’ business started in a shed in East London. Now Mr Singh’s products are sold internationally and the brand has been valued at over £1m. With 100,000 followers and 2 million video views, it was a privilege to welcome Kuldip to INA. He spoke passionately about his business and how his journey of resilience, patience and hard work has paid off. Read more about the visit here.


Jennifer Williams, US Embassy

Jennifer Williams Jennifer Williams has been a U.S. diplomat for more than ten years, primarily focused on Middle East policy. She has served overseas in Beirut, Lebanon, and Kingston, Jamaica, and has been based at the State Department headquarters in Washington, DC for the past five years. She arrived in London in July 2016 for a three-year assignment as a Press Officer at the U.S. Embassy to the United Kingdom. Before joining the State Department, Jennifer worked for the Department of Homeland Security and has previous experience on political campaigns as well. Read more about the visit here.



If you are interested in speaking as a part of our Speakers' Programme, please email: