The Beacon School Sixth Form and Year 10 students were honoured to have the opportunity to listen to guest ‘Speakers for Schools’ speaker Bill Smith.
Bill is Group Chief Executive of Lazard Asset Management Limited and previously held a number of senior positions at Barclays Bank, including Head of Savings and Investment, Deputy Chairman of Barclays Asset Management and Head of Research at BZW
He spoke the students with how a talk at his secondary school inspired him to become an actuary, and how he worked hard and used education as a tool to become a very successful and highly respected businessman.
Bill described his career in investment banking, from school, university to his professional qualifications and then to become an investment manager. He explained how this career could be of interest to the students and how they could enter the profession.
It was particularly interesting to hear Bill discussing how mathematics is so very important in the 21st century, and how the advance of technology and data analysis is very exciting when looking to the future.
The overall message and advice to the students was to ‘read, think and enthuse’, to always work hard, and to look forwards and be ahead of the game.
The Director of Sixth Form, Naomi Albrecht said, “The students found the talk extremely engaging and interesting, particularly when listening to the skills they will require to work in the investment banking industry”.
Ahad Paul, a Year 12 student, commented, “The talk from Bill has confirmed that I want to have a career in investment banking, where I can use my business and mathematical skills.”
The Beacon school staff and students were exceptionally grateful to Bill for giving up his time to speak to their students.