Journalist shares experience

A visit from a former diplomatic editor and foreign correspondent got girls talking about geopolitical issues.

The Geography Department was delighted to welcome Mr Tim Marshall, former Diplomatic Editor and Foreign Correspondent for Sky News, to Headington.

After thirty years’ experience in news reporting and presenting, Mr Marshall left full-time news journalism to concentrate on writing and analysis. His book ‘Prisoners of Geography’ has sold over one million copies worldwide.

For his visit to Headington, Tim presented a stimulating talk based on his 2018 book ‘Divided’. The book looks at the border barriers around the world which have sprung up this century. In a highly-engaging talk, he covered a range of geopolitical topics offering insightful views on challenging issues. The talk ended with a nod towards the future, a look at technology and how possibly we can become less divided.

The message was clear; Geography plays a pivotal role in shaping our world and the students of today will play a crucial role in direction we move in. Headington girls were joined by students from Radley College.

Staff, students and the wider Headington community all praised the event. The atmosphere in the room was one of excitement and interest with discussions and questions continuing throughout the evening and during the drive/walk or bus route home.

Mr David Cunningham, Head of Geography, said: “Tim is an excellent communicator who makes difficult topics very accessible to students. A natural flow with interjections of humour make it such an engaging experience for all.”

Morgane, U6, said: “Tim Marshall is an engaging speaker giving an insightful talk with fresh and original ideas. He was very open to discussing opposing viewpoints and encouraged all students to deepen their understanding and further their thinking on the subject. I’d like to thank Mr Cunningham for organising such an excellent and stimulating event. We are very lucky to have such amazing teachers.”

Head Girl Georgie (U6) was also keen express her enjoyment and said: “It was an amazing talk that left us all with plenty to think about.”

U6 Geographer Katherine, who is also our Head of Boarding, said: “He is a true giant, we learn about the issues he discusses in our A Level Geography course. My lessons this week covered his discussion about superpowers! So relevant.”

The author was keen to answer a number of challenging questions and later tweeted: “A lovely group of top students.”

He was impressed by our students’ knowledge and their ability to ask great questions.

A follow-up Geography event at Radley College is planned for next term and Mr Cunningham is also keen to host another Geography ‘Evening with’ event in the Sixth Form Café in the near future.

Anyone parents, authors or wider connections in the Geographical community are encouraged to get in touch if they would like to be involved in a future event.