Sprung off the Springboard into the unknown…..

I am in mourning after yesterday’s final session of the KCL Springboard Women’s Development Programme. The course began in October and each month I set aside one whole day and invested in ME.

Over the course of the programme I have reviewed my qualities, evaluated my skills, celebrated my strengths, set new goals, directed my assertiveness, rediscovered my positivity and ability to deal with pressure, networked and managed my image and visibility. My journey has made me face WHO I AM and the person I would like to become. The best part of all is that this came just at the right time in my life. Having completed my PhD, and immediately having to deal with a life threatening illness for my husband, I felt lost. Through the programme I found encouragement from a talented, diverse, honest and wonderful group of women. My new mantra is  MAKE IT HAPPEN!

The lovely Dr Emma Williams, of EJW Solutions Limited, has been our trusted guide and ensured that we completed the exercises, set goals and explored ideas shown in our workbooks (I applaud her ability to stop a group of women in full flow chattering & laughing so that we reached the end). In addition we heard the experiences of a variety of past participants of the programme and received  some wonderful insightful and inspiring talks form Women who already Make it Happen; from Doctors to Vice Principals.  These talks have been highly motivational, ALL presenters have been open and honest about their experiences and perhaps more importantly ALL have offered support and advice.

So what next? I now call many of these lovely women friends. We plan to meet again, which I will certainly try hard and Make it Happen! We genuinely bonded and learnt from each other. Every month we were eager to find out if we had faced up to and dealt with any difficulties or troubled areas in our work/home lives and if these had improved. I for one am a much happier person now than l was last October. I believe that the programme, and my new friends, have contributed to my present state of mind.

So a big well done to the Training and Development department at King’s College London for commissioning this course. If you are a female and a  KCL post grad or early career researcher it is worth booking a place :-



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About Michele Blagg

Michele Blagg (BA(hons), MA, PhD) is a visiting Research Associate at King's College London, at the Institute Of Contemporary British History (ICBH). As part of a collaborative doctoral award granted by the Art’s and Humanities Research Council, she was based at the Rothschild Archive, London. Her doctoral research focused on the Royal Mint Refinery, operated by N M Rothschild & Sons between 1852 and 1968, and how it adapted to the changed London gold market. Her areas of interest are in financial and business history with special regard for the actors and networks located in the London market. Her publications include 'The Royal Mint Refinery, a Window onto the London Gold Market' LBMA, Alchemist, 71, 2013; 'Gold Refining in London: The End of the Rainbow, 1919-20’ in Sandra Bott (ed.) The Global Gold Market and the International Monetary system from the late 19th century to the present (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013); ‘The Royal Mint Refinery, a business adapting to change’ in Business Archives Council, Sources and History, (2010). She teaches on the ICBH MA in Contemporary British History and assists with the Witness Seminar Programme. She sits on the Business Archives Council Executive and is involved in the annual ‘Meet the Archivists’ workshop held in the City that aims to explore ways in which research students can identify and use business records in a variety of different research fields.

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