“How did Warren Buffet become worth billions? He helped a thousand people become millionaires. This is what people miss – it’s about coming together. It’s about working towards one particular subject with each other. And it’s more guaranteed to work if more people are working on it, with the right intention of course.” Richard Towers
SCCB Community Team held an ASPIRE event recently for our students, with pro boxers Richard Towers and Kash Ali as guest speakers. Towers held the British EBU-EU Heavyweight Title and has sparred with the likes of Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury, while local Solihull sportsman Ali is the current European Heavyweight Champion of the International Boxing Federation. ASPIRE stands for:
Ambition – determination to succeed
Social Skills – soft skills for employment
Positive Mind-set – self-belief and a can do approach
Independence – taking ownership of own learning and development (self-discipline)
Resilience – seeing challenges as learning opportunities, overcoming obstacles and bouncing back, celebrating progress not just success
Enrichment – enhancing the learning experience/ journey
Richard Towers shared his powerful story about turning his life around after his troubled upbringing in Sheffield, which was eye-opening for our students.
This event is one of many opportunities that have opened up for our college thanks to the SCCB Community Team, who have been hard at work forming community connections – both boxers were part of the Bordesley Green community forum earlier in the year.
Towers grew up in a turbulent household where he experienced both physical and mental abuse as a teenager. Without a sense of belonging he turned to a life of crime, which resulted in a prison sentence. Towers engaged his audience with his story of how boxing helped him turn his life around, reflecting on his own life including regrets about the path he had previously chosen.
He says he only tried boxing to look good on his probation, and that without the support of his legendary coach / father figure Brendan Ingle and his mother, Towers would have gone back to jail.
He now uses his life experiences to warn young people not to follow the same path and embrace opportunities to succeed, develop a positive mindset, engage and progress. In no time at all he was boxing live on Sky Television with 20,000 people cheering in an arena. He turned to Islam for moral guidance, and conquered his public speaking fear talking at schools – because his 10 year old son put him to shame by doing it.
There were so many learning points for our students: the importance of healthy community, challenging toxic masculinity, learning as much as you can when you’re young, owning and learning from mistakes instead of fearing them, and never giving up.
A big round of applause to our guests for landing a knockout impression with our staff and students, answering tons of questions and taking many incredible selfies with Ali’s IBF belt!
This upcoming academic year will see the college partner with Aquarius, a local charity supporting people dealing with addiction. There will be monthly workshops offering awareness and counselling on addiction, with accredited training for our student ambassadors and planned assembles.