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A First Class graduate of King’s College, Laura’s career as Head of Global Talent at AstraZeneca has taken her around the world.
Laura, a bursary student from the Class of 1998, wants her own daughter to attend Manchester High when the time comes.
After spending five years growing up in Hong Kong, finding yourself age 12 in early ‘90s Salford was quite the culture shock!
My father was a vicar and when the time came to return to the UK my parents chose a suitably gritty, working-class parish; a total contrast to the bright lights of the expat community in Hong Kong.
My two brothers were enrolled at Urmston Grammar School but, with no place for me, my parents needed to find the right school for their somewhat rebellious and often headstrong daughter. They knew I needed a school to stretch and challenge me; occupying my mind so I was too busy to find trouble!
Fee paying schools were simply out of the question. My mother was a social worker and, coupled with a vicar’s wage, there wasn’t much income to spare.
It was at this point that Manchester High stepped up, refusing to overlook me.
Despite the fact that I actually failed part of the paper based exam (I’ll blame it on the difference between the UK and Hong Kong education systems!) the School spotted the spark of potential in me and I was offered a bursary place.
Lookin back now, this was a real ‘moment’. It was my first true break; the crucial building block I needed for starting out in life.
A Manchester High education is a powerful thing. Apart from the academic rigour it provides, the School instilled in me a real tenacity to achieve; to prove the people that say ‘no’ wrong and to always as ‘why’ when someone tells you something cannot be done.
Anyone considering making a donation to the Bursary Appeal should know that while the financial contribution they make will go towards a girl’s tuition fees, it is in fact a gift that will last a whole lifetime. After all, your education is one of the only things that can never be taken from you.
Furthermore, it is a gift that extends beyond the girl herself. Manchester High fosters individuals that strive to contribute to their community, women with a strong moral compass. The ripple effect of your gift will undoubtedly be felt far and wide.