Pupils from St Joseph’s Academy in Kilmarnock have organised ENSPIRE as a “festival of ideas” – a series of “exciting, challenging, stimulatang provocative talks”, designed to change how you see the world.
The festival, which takes place on 9th June from 11 am to 4 pm, is inspired by international ideas-sharing events such as TED.com and the Do Lectures. Enspire is the brainchild of 20 S4 Enterprise pupils who, led by principal teacher David Ritson, have conceived, developed and designed the festival.
Enspire takes as its themes three words: reinvent, inspire and transform. These are derived from the school’s vision statement (Inspire and Transform) and from St. Joseph’s longstanding relationship with a number of local businesses (they refer to them as Business Advocates). These partnerships began in 2008 with the Klin Group commissioning an original piece of theatre from the pupils for the opening of Barclay House: Reinventing the Town – Tracks of Time. Five years later the idea of reinvention, together with the exciting regeneration of Kilmarnock, has been harnessed by the pupils (who trade under the name IDLaunch) who are keen to show that anything big cities can do, Kilmarnock can do at least as well.
Now they have line-up of over 30 creative, stimulating speakers and performers. Those speaking on day include internationally recognised Scots (National Theatre of Scotland Director of Learning Simon Sharkey, Young Thinker of the Year Thom Sherrington and education expert David Cameron); East Ayrshire locals and employees (Graham Short, Helen Duncan, Danny Gorman and Phillipa Aitken); business leaders (David Ross of Keppie Design and Craig Stevenson of Braehead Foods); and former pupils of St. Joseph’s (designer Craig Lynn, raw food enthusiast Lorna Crawford and designer and journalist Angela Murphy).
The subjects up for discussion (these are more than just lectures, there will be a chance to debate and ask questions) include confidence, the power of the arts, the Romans, how to crowd source finance for new businesses, storytelling, transforming communities, how to waste an education and how our young people can save us from ourselves.
Enspire, which only takes place on Sunday June 9th at St. Joseph’s Academy, is a not-for-profit event and is part of the school’s enterprise strategy supported by East Ayrshire’s Business Enterprise and Skills Centre initiative. Tickets which cost £5 can be reserved by calling the school office on 01563 526144 or reserved online by visiting http://enspire.eventbrite.co.uk. As well as the huge range of speakers, there will be fresh local food and a variety of musical performances provided by young people from a number of schools in East Ayrshire.