Think Hospitality founder, James Hacon returned to his secondary school, Pool Academy in Cornwall, to help inspire current students to find the courage to spread their wings, experience new things and believe in themselves.
The school posted an overview of his visit to the school on their website;
Hacon left Pool Academy in 2003 and is currently located outside of London. He is an investor and business leader in the hospitality sector. He works and speaks all around the world and to date has visited more than 50 countries and worked in more than 20.
He now wants to visit students in Pool Academy to help inspire them.
Mr Hacon said: “I loved my time at Pool Academy. My best memories were going on school camp to the Isles of Scilly, being in multiple school plays, playing rugby for the school and being really active in the peer mentoring and public speaking programmes.”
His favourite subjects were English and Drama and his favourite teachers were Dr Jones, who taught drama and PSHE, and Dr Perry, who was Head of English. Dr Perry also encouraged his students to enter public speaking competitions.
Mr Hacon said: “I owe them both so much, they helped to shape who I am today.”
After leaving Pool he went to sixth form and ‘tried university a few times’ but said it ‘wasn’t for me’.
He continued: “I ended up starting my career at Gleneagles Hotel in Scotland and studied distance learning. Since then I have lived in Spain, New Zealand and Australia, doing all kinds of incredible jobs that have given me the grounding to run my own company, working with hospitality leaders all over the world to grow their businesses.”
When asked what advice he would give to current Pool Academy students, he said: “Sometimes in Cornwall it can feel like you are a long way from anywhere. I know it feels like a big thing to move somewhere else but it’s so important to broaden your horizons and travel. See new places, experience new things, different cultures.
“Learn to say yes. Take a chance and believe in yourself. And if you decide to move away, when you’re done with your travels, Cornwall will still be there for you and you will really value the skills and experiences you’ve gained in other places.”