A host of successful business leaders ventured back to the classroom to inspire and mentor the next generation of leaders.

On October 11, Year 13 pupils from Tauheedul Islam Girls’ High School and Sixth Form College (TIGHS) heard from a number of dynamic speakers, including special guest Dame Julia Cleverdon DCVO CBE.

They also participated in ‘speed mentoring’ sessions during the school’s annual Aspire and Inspire Leadership Conference, of which the theme was civic, moral and performance leadership skills.

Dame Julia Cleverdon – a renowned leader and campaigner who has led a number of charities that have transformed education and opportunities for young people reflected on the leadership skills she has observed and learnt while campaigning to try to unite individuals and teams to achieve the greater good.

She said: "It was a privilege to be part of the 30 mentors who learnt as much - if not more - from the impressive young women at TIGHS."

The event was the culmination of a programme of activities aimed at helping pupils with the transition from school to adult life, including everything from cookery and self-defence, to public speaking, enterprise and leadership skills.

During the conference, the pupils each took part in a speed mentoring carousel delivered in partnership with Northern Power Futures, where they had the opportunity to question mentors about their careers and education.

Northern Power Futures, which was launched in 2018, aims to give young people opportunities to supercharge their careers by improving their skills and life choices with support from business mentors.

Assistant Principal of TIGHS, Amina Modan, said: "As a leadership specialism school, we aim to motivate our pupils to become tomorrow's leaders.

"The conference gave pupils a unique opportunity to benefit first-hand from the advice and experiences of successful leaders from a broad range of businesses.

"We have empowered our pupils to aim for the stars, to believe in themselves and pursue their dreams relentlessly.

"The young women are hugely positive about, and ready to embrace, the next steps in their education and careers."