Thomson Reuters STEM Seminar

NigelRole Model Seminars


Thomson Reuters & Urban Synergy hosted their STEM Role Model Seminar at the Thomson Reuters office in Canary Wharf on 27th June, with students from Haberdashers Aske’s Knights Academy and also Haberdashers Askes Hatcham College.

The seminar keynote speaker was Alex Cesar, Head of Risk Technology who told the audience ‘Early careers - it’s about opportunities, it’s an opportunity for learning. Think about the things you like, the things you understand and the things you enjoy and do your best. Never waste an opportunity, take them and apply yourself.’

The STEM panel were;

  • Valerie Boateng, Senior Consultant - Professional Services
  • Bettina Nethercott, Head of Programme & Project Support
  • Tharindi Hapuarachchi, Senior Manager - Thomson Reuters Labs
  • Hella Hoffman, Senior Data Scientist

The panel were asked to demystify their job titles and roles to the audience and were also asked various questions about their roles and what a typical day would involve. The panel were also asked how they became interested in the field of STEM and to talk about their educational and career journey. The panel talked about the importance of volunteering and how it could improve your social skills, how new skills could be applied to the workplace. Also establishing whether an interest could become a career.

Hella Hoffman advised ‘don’t be afraid to take risks, try things, be brave and learn from your failures. Be curious.’

Valerie Boateng provided the following advice ‘ network, networking is very important. Pick your friends wisely.’

Bettina Nethercott advised that ‘building up resilience is very important.’

Tharindi Hapuarachchi also suggested the following ‘Look around and see what’s interesting. Be open to new ideas, be open to new places and new people.’

Student feedback

Kylie aged 15yrs: ‘to be confident and successful I need to put myself out there and make myself open to other opportunities. I will work hard and speak to more mentors.’

Nina aged 15yrs: ‘I learned that networking is important at this age and doing what you enjoy is important to be happy in life. Additionally, I learned that the company you keep is very important in your growth. I enjoyed learning about what their jobs consist of because it gave me insight on what skills and subjects can be applied to the workplace and the variety within one company.’

Amadi aged 14yrs: ‘I will work at my absolute best to achieve my potential and grades.’

Aaliyha aged 15yrs: ‘I will be more serious, as education is key and I will start focusing on my future.’

Shante aged 17 yrs: ‘The role models made me really reflect and think about my career choices.’

Quincy aged 17 yrs: ‘I will further improve the repertoire of transferable skills to adapt to the changing world.’

Aaron aged 15 yrs: ‘I learned that we need to work hard for what we want, we don’t have to be the smartest person we can still succeed if we’re hardworking and passionate about what we want to do. I will never turn down an opportunity, because I need all of the experience I can get and as much on my CV as possible. I enjoyed hearing everyone’s life stories and understanding how they have made something out of their lives.’

Aleema aged 16yrs: ‘I learned that people take very different paths and still can end up being successful.’