Skip to content

Award students get masterclass
on how to pitch themselves

Cranleigh School students taking The Ivy House Award had a special guest join their final session – none other than Ivy House Founder Elke Edwards – for some live coaching.

The session is an opportunity for students to put into practice everything they’ve learned about themselves over the course of the programme – what their strengths are, what they’re passionate about, what future they want to create – by pitching themselves to their peers and teachers.

The pitch is only 1 minute long, but gives them the chance to confidently speak about themselves, showcase what makes them stand out from the crowd and importantly, how to ask for guidance, support or input on something important to them.

How did it go?

We’ll let one of the students in the room tell you about the experience:

“Six of the eight Cranleigh House Captains attended The Ivy House Award live coaching, along with two of the Cranleigh Being chairs and both Senior Prefects. Ivy House has influenced talks on bystander culture, body image, rape culture and far beyond, and Ivy House has benefitted every individual who has engaged in the course and all of those around them. 

I was initially sceptical of an award that I was told might change my life, however a year on and after much self-reflection and personal development I will in fact confirm that The Ivy House Award has fallen in no way short. The final episode of The Award welcomed its very founder Elke Edwards into Cranleigh grounds for what can best be described as a masterclass on pitching oneself. We learned how to present ourselves and have conversations productively, producing opportunity and growth. I don’t doubt this will benefit us in years to come.”

Human development

We know that these human skills make a massive difference to how young people’s lives turn out, but it still hits home when we read incredible comments like that.

Elke Edwards makes a brilliant point about getting the balance of developing leadership and life skills alongside academic attainment in schools:

“Every time I speak to teachers and parents at a school, I get them to visualise a group of young people they know. Then I ask them to pick the person they would like to employ. The next question I ask is: why them? And you know, the sort of answers that always come back are ‘energy, engagement, quiet confidence, interested, good communicator, diligent, funny….’ Not once, in all the years of asking comes the answer ‘Straight A’s’ and yet that is what our young people still believe.”

That’s why we’re on a mission to put human development at the heart of education. We’ll leave you with the parting words from our Cranleigh student:

“To those in the year below myself considering this Award, I must implore you to have a go, open yourself up to change, explore your strengths and weaknesses, what’s the worst that can happen?”





Recent Awards won by Ivy House