It was my great honour to speak at the 2016 Inala Women's Symposium today at Glenala State High School. This was the first of what I hope will be many symposiums in their future, as it was a wonderful event that I think would have helped me as a teen.
As soon as I walked through the gates at Glenala, I was transported back in time to my own high school years at Richlands SHS in the 1980s. The more things change, the more they stay the same and I could see plenty of evidence of how important the arts, culture and community are at the school.
To kick things off we heard from Glenala's wonderful School Principal, Anne Lawson about the important community relationships at the school, showcased in Seeing the world in a different light video.
I joined everyone in the hall to do the dance of success (they were probably sorry they got me to dance) with the first guest speaker, Inez Manu-Sione who inspired us all with her journey from the Northern Territory to study law, business and education.
New Zealand and Samoan international netball champion, Sheryl Scanlan spoke to us about her passion for sport and how dedication, commitment to training and plain old hard work led her to earn 72 international caps playing for the Silver Ferns.
Both women were incredibly inspiring and I was honoured to speak alongside them about my own wonky, loopy journey to 'success' that I refer to as 'My Brilliant Failure'.
The highlight of my morning however, was meeting some of the wonderful young women who currently attend Glenala SHS and on meeting them, I can safely say the future is in good hands.
Thank you to James Brewer and Glenala State High School for inviting me, I had a wonderful time and hope to visit the school again in any capacity you'd have me.
Proudly from Inala - Jo Sparrow