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Meet our newly appointed Trustees!

By Aegis UK May 3, 2023

AEGIS is lucky to have such dedicated and experienced Trustees and we have recently welcomed several new Trustees from educational guardianship and school backgrounds. We asked what drew them to AEGIS and what they enjoy most about working with international students.

Sunny Field, Managing Director, Overseas Personal Development Services Ltd

I want to contribute to a worthwhile cause, sharing experiences with colleagues and making international students’ UK experience a positive and memorable one!
Working with young people enriches my life. International students bring their culture and heritage to the UK and in turn British education contributes to their growth.  Playing an important part in this process and seeing them staying in a safe environment, becoming more confident and realising their potential gives me great pleasure.   

Steph Gilbert, Director of Compliance and Safeguarding, Oxbridge Guardians

What drew me to AEGIS was the work I’d seen AEGIS do since I’ve been in the Guardianship industry; ranging from the development of the accreditation process, to the campaigning with DfE and communication with PHE (and other bodies) during the pandemic. It’s clear to me that ours is an industry which requires regulation to ensure the best practice and the safety of our students; which is why I wanted to work with AEGIS, not just as a Gold Standard Guardianship, but as part of the Trustee team to help further the promotion of excellent standards, and to support the essential work which has and is already being done. 
I have worked with international students since I was a student, and I have always enjoyed the unique world of international education and the everything which comes with it. I love that by working with international students we’re challenging our ways of thinking to a more global level. 

Jemma Holroyd, Head of Student Wellbeing, Queen Ethelburga’s Collegiate

I was drawn to apply to be a Trustee for AEGIS as I believe that for a young person to be successful in their educational career they must first and foremost feel safe and cared for. AEGIS helps to ensure that safeguarding and wellbeing are at the forefront of guardianship provision. I am passionate about promoting and educating young people with regards to positive wellbeing and look forward to working as a Trustee.
I really enjoy working with international students as it allows me to personally learn more about other cultures and beliefs. As a school with a large cohort of international students, part of my role is facilitating  opportunities for the students to share the aspects of their culture that matter the most to them.

Karen Pickles, Director and DSL, Berkeley Guardians Ltd

I have been a Senior Housemistress at Clifton College, a Faculty and Department Head in a variety of HMC and GSA schools and have always worked closely with the international community.  As a Housemistress, I have kept in touch with many of my overseas pupils and even attended some weddings!  More recently, as a director of a guardianship company, I have worked closely with schools to ensure the safety and wellbeing of those pupils in our care.   This is at the heart of all we in the education and guardianship community do and AEGIS supports this wholeheartedly.
I have seen how AEGIS work to support the pupils who come to our schools to live and work and the high standards they aspire all their guardianships to uphold.  I believe this is vital to keep pupils safe, well protected and supported and I am absolutely delighted and feel very privileged to be given this opportunity to continue to support the international community as it is an area of education that I hold very dear to my heart.

Gerry Young, Deputy Head (Boarding), St Leonards

I have been lucky enough to have spent my whole teaching career in boarding schools, where international students have a hugely positive impact. AEGIS was created to ensure that these remarkable young people are properly cared for and I am honoured to be able to play even a small part in that. I see this as an opportunity to contribute as much as my experience will allow, and also to learn more about such an important cornerstone of our sector.
International students bring so many positives to schools that they join. Aside from the obvious advantages to boarding communities of increasing cultural diversity, these young people bring completely different life experiences, passions, dreams, expectations, talents, and ideas of friendship and family to the mix. They have chosen to leave their friends, families, and home countries because they want to immerse themselves in a completely new culture and community, so they do tend to be extremely outgoing and eager to make friends and become part of the family. As well as bringing their wonderful cultures to the UK, they are fascinated by the one they are joining, and it is an absolute joy to re-experience my own country again and again through their fresh and amazed eyes.