My name’s Bobby Hopkins and I’m 20. I currently work part time as a Waiter at a pub called The Farmers Arms, also part-time I teach kickboxing as a Senior martial arts instructor to ages through 4-6 year old’s all the way through to adults and ladies classes. My hobbies are photography, kickboxing and I have interests within martial arts as a whole as well as sociology. My aspiration is to work within the public sector, a lot like teaching in martial arts I want to be in a job where I will make a positive impact on people’s lives and see the difference I am creating for the better.

The last challenge I had to overcome was in regards to my family’s martial arts business. This is run by me, my two brothers and my mum. A student came in and had tested positive for covid-19 after participating in the class, in which one of my brothers and my mum were in attendance. So, they had to self-isolate for 10 days, as a result me and my eldest brother had to take over the club for those 10 days that then extended to around 2 weeks.

I was teaching between 4-5 classes a day 3-4 days a week and my brother taught the other 3-4 days. I did this alongside other work for  internships as well as part-time work. No one else in the club had tested positive since the first incident and I took upon the leadership role teaching both kids, teens, and adults and pushed through a time where staff was cut short due to unforeseen circumstances and there were no issues or complications, due to it going smoothly and me and my brother taking control of the situation and adapting to it the club and finances of the business where the same if not better than when the initial incident had happened.

The motivation of supporting my friends within the club and my family having no control over what to do provided me with the inspiration to take control of the situation and handle it to make them proud and prove to members of the club how much we value what we do even in the circumstances we found ourselves within.
I have a positive outlook on work opportunities, and education, this is because it provides me with an open mind and has allowed me to become more skilled and curious than I ever had anticipated before. I did my GCSEs and got better grades than I ever thought possible, so I went to sixth form to get my A-levels and then made the decision to go to university and I am proud of how far I have come in this journey.

I heard about Babassa through a friend on my course at university, the posted a link to a panel of virtual professionals who you could interact with and ask about their careers and get advice and ask questions which intrigued me so I decided to attend and found it rather useful for resources and a clearer idea about what I’d like to do in the future.
Through them I was able to secure a placement with Sun Life UK! My placement involves a lot of interaction with the head of HR and guiding through aims of the company as well as regular day-today and week-to-week roles and responsibilities expected of them as well as personal work and research activities I am set to do.
This programme has made a significant difference to my life as it has opened up so many different opportunities to me and the workshops available have majorly developed both my skills, CV, Linkedin profile, finding resources and knowing where to look for jobs and generally helped me narrow down a path to my dream job. 

I feel optimistic about life right now, and I also feel driven towards my education ready to complete my dissertation the next coming university year! My goals are to complete my degree with a 1st class honours, to further develop my photography skills and to adapt with my martial arts learning new forms, such as Thai boxing which I am currently working towards.
In 5 years’ time I see myself continuing to educate myself in some format, whether that be sports, teaching, my hobbies, self-development. Alongside this I hope to have a small wedding photography business, still continuing to teach as a martial arts instructor and hopefully be in a job relevant to my degree in sociology and my placement in HR have helped guide me to what part of the public sector I’d like to have an impact within.
The best piece of advice id give to my younger self is to believe in what you are capable of and you will thrive. Never give up despite those who do and don’t believe in you, In my case my motivation was to prove all those who didn’t believe in me wrong.

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