Shermara Fletcher (BA Drama and English Literature, 2015), Principal Officer for Pentecostal, Charismatic and Multicultural Relations at Churches Together in England, reflects on her recent visit back to campus
“On Friday 28 October, a few weeks following my reading at Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral, I had the privilege to visit the University of Birmingham as an alumna. As I reminisced and walked the grounds of the University, the Guild of Students, Old Joe, the Library and new Sports Centre, I was filled with many amazing memories about my time as a student between 2012-2015.
“On my visit to campus, I was warmly greeted at the Edgbaston Park Hotel and Conference Centre by members of staff from the School of English, Drama and Creative Studies, and the School of Philosophy and Religion. This was an emotional full circle experience for me as, ten years prior, I had worked at the Conference Centre as a student. It was there that I wrote my vision that I am currently living out. The irony of returning to the very place I created my vision all those years ago was profound.
“It was amazing to hear the new and great work that both Schools are doing with students, and to hear their passion about seeing their students become the best they can be. I was also impressed with the University’s understanding of its responsibility as a key community stakeholder, and its commitment to sustainability, investment in local communities, and relationships with faith groups. The partnership between the University and the city of Birmingham on delivering the 2022 Commonwealth Games was also a highlight and great credit to both.
“As I reflect on my visit, and my personal transition from student to alumna, I have a word of encouragement for every student. I encourage you to take up every opportunity that the University has to offer, to make and develop great friendships that add reciprocal value, and to cherish the education that you receive as it prepares you to engage with the world.
“As you embark on your studies, also embark on developing your character. Your talent will get you into the room, but your character will enable you to stay there.
“I’m thankful for my time at Birmingham and for the investment they made in me to do the things that I do now. I look forward to being involved as an alumna and seeing the impact the University continues to make in the life of students and in the community.”
Thank you to Shermara and her family for visiting campus and for sharing her reflections with us.