There was a palpable buzz when the ‘Northern power houses’ of the GDST schools got together at York University this week. In one of the largest gatherings of GDST girls in history, Year 10 students from six GDST schools and academies met for a day of networking and sharing, and looking forward to their own successful futures.
GDST CEO, Cheryl Giovannoni, welcomed everyone with a turbocharged talk, stating that women were now taking their place in the world. It is girls like you, she said, who have benefited from an excellent education, who are leading the way. But with a great start comes great responsibility, Cheryl reminded the students. The importance of making a positive difference in the world was a central theme throughout the day.
There was motivation aplenty from Moj and Pernilla from Push, who got the girls having fun and learning about the power of humour when it comes to developing resilience.
And Deana Puccio of the Rap Project presented a powerful talk on sexual safety and the importance of social media as an agent for positive change. The former Assistant District Attorney from New York said movements such as #metoo and #everydaysexism are examples of women supporting each other, not comparing themselves to each other.
The stars of the day were the GDST girls who presented in the afternoon, no mean feat in front of nearly 600 delegates. They covered topics as diverse as CCF at Belvedere Academy , the eco initiatives at Shrewsbury High School, performance anxiety, and a career in politics.
It was a powerful and empowering day that left everyone enthused and energised and very proud to be part of the GDST.