Challenges and growth in schools development: A Kings College School Wimbledon perspective
CASE talks to Adriana Williams, Deputy Development Director at King’s College School Wimbledon about development challenges and opportunities, the CASE Europe Annual Conference and the importance of data analysis.
1. What is your background and how did you get into educational advancement?
I graduated in International Business in 2008, right at the beginning of a recession, and as the graduate schemes were quickly drying up I decided to carry on at Warwick Business School and complete a masters in Marketing and Strategy. For their dissertations, the students on my course were gathering primary data from big “for-profit” companies, so I decided to do something different: I wrote my dissertation on young alumni giving at my old school, Latymer Upper School, and there I caught the educational advancement bug.
2. Which of CASE’s new member benefits are you most looking forward to using?
I am most looking forward to using the CASE e-Mentoring platform. I have been lucky enough to benefit from mentoring in an informal capacity from colleagues I met at the CASE Spring Institute, and I hope to be able to both be a mentor myself as well as continue to learn from others’ experiences.
3. What are your challenges?
At the moment, our main challenge is getting a better understanding of the relevance of alumni and external relations to our audience. We have learnt so much from what other institutions do, but will this knowledge translate to the King’s community? In order make sure we are delivering pertinent and interesting events and communications to our constituents, we have been consulting internal stakeholders as well as individual members of the community, and in the next year we will be conducting surveys on different themes to make sure we are fulfilling the needs and expectations of everyone involved with the school.
4. What do you think will be the growth areas in Development the next 3–5 years?
I think the issue of bursaries will become ever more pertinent — with the proposed re-introduction of grammar schools and the dwindling size of the middle class, the demand for excellent education will increase and there will be growing demand for bursary places at high-achieving independent schools.
5. What books/websites/podcasts/etc would you recommend to colleagues in the sector?
I enjoy reading sofii.org but also LinkedIn is a good source of interesting articles, and (of course) Currents.
Adriana Williams is Deputy Development Director at King’s College School Wimbledon, UK