Keep an eye out on the first Wednesday of every month for our new series of podcasts entitled ‘Inspire me to’ created to motivate, inspire and entertain you. Television and broadcasting student Maddison Young will be interviewing a variety of guests, many of whom are alumni, all at different stages in their careers and in a range of different subject areas.

With some fascinating stories and helpful tips and advice, we hope this series connects with you and assists you during your own journey.

If you would like to feature on one of our podcasts, please complete this short form to register your interest.

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Inspire me to…take a product to market

Have you got a unique product idea but just don’t know where to start? Or maybe you’re in the process of launching your own product and need some advice on how to take the next step?

Kicking off our brand new podcast series is an interview with Portsmouth alumna Lynda Harding, Founder and CEO of the widely successful Sweetdreamers and one of the School of Business and Law’s entrepreneurs in residence.

Lynda has lots of experience in the business world and has herself come up against obstacles when launching her products including Ewan the Dream Sheep who we’re sure is a particular favourite for parents with children who struggle to sleep!

From a young age Lynda has been business-minded and for years has run her own nursery. When her sixth child Bradley was born, he refused to sleep so she used her business acumen to design a sleeping aid to help other parents going through the same experience.

In this podcast listen to television and broadcasting student Maddison Young interview Lynda about how Ewan went from an idea to becoming the award winning product he is today. Lynda will be offering hints and tips about how to overcome some of the obstacles she faced along the way, how she entered the international market and how she is continually looking to review and improve her products.

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Inspire me to…follow my creative passion

Pursuing a creative career can mean taking a leap of faith. It can potentially be seen as a bit risky, especially if you have been brought up around influences of family and friends who believe that you should follow a more traditional career path. In this episode of our ‘Inspire me to’ podcasts, we welcome Shifra Kirby to discuss the courage and hard-work it has taken for her to pursue her creative passion.

Shifra was always planning to pursue a career in law, but changed her mind at the last minute to follow her dream. Shifra graduated in 2018 with a degree in Film Production and only 3 months after graduating secured a dream role doing something completely different to what she envisaged just a few years ago.  It hasn’t been easy but Shifra has followed her heart and pursued a creative career which she is absolutely loving.

If you are currently trying to make a decision whether to pursue your creative passion, we hope this episode offers you inspiration and information you need to help you make the best choice for you.

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Inspire me to…push my limits

It takes a certain kind of person to push themselves to the absolute limit, but for some people this is what motivates them and is part of their everyday life. Tom Dilrew is a Portsmouth graduate who has pushed himself both mentally and physically to train and complete marathons in a number of countries including Rome, Sydney, Rio, Toronto, Singapore and Cape Town.

Tom is experienced in pushing his body to the limit and talks about what motivates him, how he has embraced each challenge and how he overcomes weakness and self doubt - advice that can be applied both personally and professionally.

Tom’s final goal in his 7 continents marathon challenge is the Antarctic Ice Marathon in 2020. Watch his video to learn more.

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Inspire me to… find my passion

Discovering, trialling and ultimately following your passion is a subject Heather Barrie who is one of our Entrepreneurs in Residence here at the University of Portsmouth, knows a lot about.

Heather has a fascinating background that took her from the corporate world to making the leap of purchasing a coffee truck and becoming the founder of Harrie’s Coffee, an independent, ethical, Sussex-based coffee and coffee machine supplier. Heather has since won the Chichester Observer Business Award for her outstanding local business engagement and has appeared on BBC radio and TV including the Victoria Derbyshire Show.

If you are hoping to find your passion in life and turn it into a business venture then we hope you will find this episode inspiring and it may even give you the confidence to take that leap of faith.

Inspire me to… make - innovate - collaborate

Portsmouth MRes Technology graduate Ming Wu, along with his two colleagues has created a space in Portsmouth for creative people to make, innovate and collaborate. The Makers Guild is a community interest company designed to unlock creative potential. They achieve this by providing opportunities and accessibility to creative networks, facilities and equipment. What makes Ming’s story so inspiring is that he is turning his passion of product design into a community business to inspire and support others. Ming is Portsmouth born and bred and hopes to improve the city with ventures such as his.

Inspire me to … take my studies to the next level

The thought of studying for a PhD can seem like a daunting prospect to most of us and we may assume that someone studying for one is particularly clever or academically minded. You might have questions about how they fit into university life? Are they considered a student or professional? Why would you study for a PhD and what happens next if you do study for one?  

Sorina and Danielle are both graduates of the University of Portsmouth and are now studying for a social science PhD here, due to complete in 2021. They will talk to us about their experiences and help us to dispel some of the myths. They have been awarded a scholarship with the South Coast Doctoral Training Partnership which is a collaboration between the Universities of Southampton, Brighton and Portsmouth. The aim of the collaboration is to deliver the latest developments in training in research methods and skills to produce highly qualified and rounded social scientists, equipped to meet contemporary economic and social challenges.