NHS Speaker Series 2021 | Speakers for Schools

Inspiring Future Healthcare Leaders: The NHS Speaker Series 2021

NHS England and NHS Improvement are working with Speakers for Schools to celebrate the 70th birthday of the NHS this year. As part of the celebrations, working together, we want to help inspire young people to find out more about the opportunities for them to get involved in the NHS, through volunteering, work experience or careers.

It is part of a campaign by NHS England and NHS Improvement to showcase the range of careers in the NHS and to highlight the importance of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects which would lead to high-quality, professional roles in the NHS.

This year senior NHS health leaders and clinicians have made a commitment to go into secondary state schools to talk about the NHS, their experience and their roles to help inspire young people.

See the leading senior health officials and clinicians on this page who have joined the Speakers for Schools network to give their time in state schools across the country, including Simon Stevens, Chief Executive of NHS England; Professor Jane Cummings, Chief Nursing Officer for England; Dr Ellie Cannon, NHS GP, writer and broadcaster; Millie Banerjee CBE, Chair of NHS Blood and Transplant; Kathryn Gutteridge, President of the Royal College of Midwives; and Baroness (Dido) Harding, Non-Executive Chair of NHS Improvement.

What our supporters say:

Simon Stevens, Chief Executive of NHS England said:

“As the NHS turns 70 this year, we can rightly be proud of the enormous contribution it has made to our country.

“But it is absolutely vital we inspire young people to think about working in the NHS and to take up the vital STEM subjects that will equip them for rewarding careers in the future workforce of the NHS.”

Dr Ellie Cannon, NHS GP, writer and broadcaster said:

“The NHS is a great place to work and studying STEM at school has opened up so many opportunities for me.

“It is so important we find ways to spark the imaginations of young people so they opt for one of the many rich and rewarding roles in patient care that the NHS can offer.”

Ashley Hodges, Executive Director of Speakers for Schools said:

“We are thrilled to be supporting the NHS’s 70th birthday by helping NHS leadership get into schools across the UK, celebrating not only its amazing contributions to Britain since its foundation, but also the array of specialists, innovators and outstanding individuals that make their work possible.

“We hope this will help students see the amazing amount of opportunity available in the healthcare sector, from bio-medicine to therapy and support roles, and spark new interests for their future.”

How can you get involved?

This campaign and talk series is part of a package of measures launched in the NHS’s 70th year to foster links with schools, including:

Schools and Educators

  • Sign your school up to Speakers for Schools to inspire your students and broaden horizons through access to the insights, experiences and expertise of today’s leading figures through free talks and more — free of charge.
  • Class Activities
    • ‘Knowing your NHS’ education pack can be used to support Personal Social and Health Education secondary school lessons. This provides information and activities designed to help young people understand NHS services, how to access them and the importance of using them wisely.
    • Online resources to help teachers plan lessons about NHS careers and promoting good health and well being for various age groups – from primary to secondary school age.
  • Careers Activities

Health Professionals

  • If you’re from the NHS and want to get involved in this initiative please contact us here.

Scotland Launch – September 2018

In September 2018, we launched a similar initiative in Scotland. The programme will feature senior professionals from across the NHS in Scotland travelling to secondary schools to inspire the workforce of the future.
Health Secretary, Jeane Freeman said:

“This speakers programme combines two very important celebratory events in Scotland, the 70th anniversary of the NHS and the Year of Young People.

“I’m delighted colleagues have given their time to help inspire students about the value of a career in the NHS and the exciting and fulfilling opportunities it offers.

“As Scotland’s largest employer, the scope of careers is vast, and the anniversary provides the perfect opportunity to shine a light on the vital role NHS staff play in the lives of those who rely on its care every day.”

Watch this space for updates on this incredible talk series as it progresses! You can also see stories from our recent talks on our News & Events page.