Inspire Lecture Series

The Inspire Lecture Series at Cheltenham Bournside School invites speakers from all corners of industry and higher education to deliver inspirational lectures to students at the school.

Previous guests have included Dr Samir Guglani, NHS Oncologist, Author and Director of Medicine Unboxed, Curstain Keltie, Garden Designer and and Horticultural Consultant, and Nathan Lake, professional squash player.

"The Inspire Lecture series builds upon our already successful external speaker programme, bringing it together under one umbrella to help our students identify the speakers they'd most like to see. Each speaker brings their own expertise and experience into the school, sparking curiosity and inspiring ambition among our students."

- Mrs Hemsley, Assistant Headteacher

Many of our Inspire Lectures are delivered in partnership with experts from University of Gloucestershire. Guest lecturers have joined us to cover specialisms including Journalism, Fashion, Film Production and Law, with more planned over the coming terms.

"We're delighted to be working closely with the team at Bournside to deliver a varied and vibrant series of subject lectures. Academic colleagues from a range of areas have volunteered their time to share their passion for their subject specialism and they are excited to kick start some interesting conversations with students. We pride ourselves on working with local young people to explore their futures. Who knows, maybe this could be the start of a new interest?" 

- Alice Vellender, Student Recruitment and Outreach Manager

If you would be interested in delivering a future Inspire Lecture in the series, please contact Mrs Hemsley at lh@bournside.gloucs.sch.uk.

2023/24 Inspire lectures

Wednesday 11th October, 2023

Towards Machine Understanding - AI research 

Professor Michael Wooldridge, University of Oxford

Recent developments in Artificial Intelligence (AI) are startling - at least at first sight. We now have AI systems that appear to be able to sustain meaningful conversations, capable of answering complex questions about an impressively broad range of topics. Machines that can really pass the Turing's famous test for machine intelligence now seem plausible within the near future. So to what extent are these impressive new tools really intelligent? To what extent can we say they understand in the same way that we do? And where is this technology heading?

Tuesday 19th December, 2023

Student Awards Guest of Honour

Lucy Beresford, Joint Managing Director of SLG Beauty

Lucy Beresford is Joint Managing Director of SLG Brands, a highly creative beauty brand company that boasts many accolades in product innovation and social media marketing. SLG own a portfolio of brands and work with celebrities, influencers, and fashion brands to develop beauty that is sold globally to the world’s largest corporations.Having grown up and worked in Gloucestershire throughout her career, Lucy has much relatable experience to share with our award winners about the workplace and opportunities for the Gen Z generation.Lucy was also recognised as Leader of the Year at the SGGBA awards and graduated with a Global Masters in Business Administration in 2023.

Wednesday 6th March

Lisa Maxwell: Stage, Screen and Laughs

Lisa Maxwell, actor, presenter and entertainer.

Lisa joins us to talk about her varied career in the limelight, advice on getting into acting and to share her insight into auditioning, public speaking and presenting.

Lisa will also be speaking to A level criminology and media students about her role in The Bill as a crime drama; the research that had to be done to be realistic and the impact of the show on the public as the students look at the media representations of crime. 

Lisa starred in British television's longest-running police drama The Bill as DI Samantha Nixon, Hollyoaks (Tracey Donovan), the film The Dark Crystal (as the voice of Kira) and in her own sketch show: The Lisa Maxwell Show. She is also a former panellist of Loose Women and has performed on stage in the musicals Grease, Boogie Nights with Shane Richie and End of the Rainbow. Lisa is a proud ambassador for the charity Centrepoint which offers support to the homeless.

*NEW DATE*

Wednesday 20th March, 2024

The Journey Towards the Within

Martin Wood, Senior Lecturer in and course leader for Religion, Philosophy and Ethics, University of Gloucestershire

Growing up in the eighties in the dull tedium of Wokingham where the long-term expectation was get a job and do it for life. I tried but thankfully failed...the lure of travel and backpacking was too much. So, I took a one way flight to Australia via Aotearoa/ New Zealand. Having met a Māori tribal elder on the way I found myself on arrival, immersed into a world of Tu Hoe Maori religion and spirituality that I could never have imagined existed and it changed my life. After many more adventures in the world of religion from Jerusalem to New Delhi and back to Aotearoa, I now teach the study of religions, so let me tell you how it all unfolded...

Tuesday 23rd April, 2024

Studying Fine Art

Susie Olczak, Lecturer in Fine Art, University of Gloucestershire

 

A talk about what it is like to study Fine Art, giving an insight into projects, trips, extra-curricular activities and the kinds of facilities available.

Wednesday 15th May, 2024

Journey into Television 

Juliet Russell, Lecturer BA Television, University of Gloucestershire

Juliet has worked in the TV industry for over 15 years, covering a variety of formats including news, current affairs and factual television production.  The programmes she worked on include - Bear Grylls 'Man V Wild' and 'On Thin Ice' with James Cracknell and Ben Fogle.

Tuesday 11th June, 2024

Why Journalism can be the best job ever

Paul Wiltshire, BA Journalism course leader, University of Gloucestershire

I'll look at what being a journalist involves, and how we prepare our students for a career in the media.

 
professor Michael Wooldridge, 
University of Oxford

Lecture: Wednesday 11th October, 2-3pm 

Towards Machine Understanding

Recent developments in Artificial Intelligence (AI) are startling - at least at first sight. We now have AI systems that appear to be able to sustain meaningful conversations, capable of answering complex questions about an impressively broad range of topics. Machines that can really pass the Turing's famous test for machine intelligence now seem plausible within the near future. So to what extent are these impressive new tools really intelligent? To what extent can we say they understand in the same way that we do? And where is this technology heading?

Michael Wooldridge is a Professor of Computer Science at the University of Oxford, and a programme director for AI at the Alan Turing Institute. He has been an AI researcher for more than 30 years, and has published more than 400 scientific articles on the subject, including nine books. He is a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), the Association for the Advancement of AI (AAAI), and the European Association for AI (EurAI). From 2014-16, he was President of the European Association for AI, and from 2015-17 he was President of the International Joint Conference on AI (IJCAI). He was a recipient of the Lovelace medal from the British Computer Society in 2020 – the premier computing award in the UK – and received the Outstanding Educator Award from the Association for Advancement of AI (AAAI) in 2021. He has published two popular science introductions to AI: The Ladybird Expert Guide to AI (2018), and The Road to Conscious Machines (Pelican, 2020).

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