Hannah Bowers: 2015 Future Leader

Hannah is participating in a part of the British Council Future Leaders scheme. He started at British Council in September 2015.

Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I have always been interested in discovering other cultures. At university I therefore chose to study Spanish and Portuguese which gave me the opportunity to live in Venezuela and Brazil on my year abroad. After graduating I went on to work as a youth leader and then in the Parliamentary team at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. Whilst these were both exciting opportunities I knew that I wanted a career which would allow me to be globally mobile. 

What about the British Council Future Leaders Scheme attracted you?

I remember seeing the description of the scheme and thinking that this was exactly what I had been looking for. One of the main attractions for me was the prospect of being globally mobile whilst working for an organisation whose mission I really believed in.  I also liked the idea of being exposed to so many different parts of the organisation. Although I knew a bit about the English teaching and Arts work that the British Council is involved in I have been amazed and inspired by the breadth of work which the organisation does.  

Can you briefly summarise the work you have done with British Council as a Future Leader and beyond?

So far I have worked for 2 months in each of the Strategic Business Units, a great opportunity to see work across the organisation. I have had a huge range of experiences during my time here, meeting brilliant people and learning all the time about new and exciting projects. 

I started working in the Strategic Marketing team in Education and Society on a project that analysed their portfolio. Following that I began working with the Creative Economy team in the Arts on an evaluation publication. I am currently with the English for Education Systems team in the English and Examinations where I have organised two stakeholder events and am working on a market research project. I am very excited to be off to Berlin soon where I will be working as the EU arts co-ordinator! 

How has your time with British Council benefited you?

I have learnt a huge amount in the last few months which I know will stand me in good stead in the future; from effective stakeholder engagement to how to monitor & evaluate, from working with people around the world to developing more commercial awareness. There have been so many opportunities for professional development through on-the-job learning as well as the brilliant training courses we have had.

What has been the best part of working for British Council?

The best part of working for the British Council has been the people that I’ve met. People here are so engaged and passionate about what they do which has really inspired me. 

If you had to sum up your experience with British Council in one sentence, what would you say?

My experience so far with the British Council has been diverse and challenging as well as extremely exciting. 

Hannah is participating in the British Council Future Leaders Scheme, aimed at UK young professionals.