15 November 2019

Lecture Report: YOUniverisity delivered by Flying Officer Otto Dawes OB

Simon Lawrence  Lower Sixth
As an Old Birkonian himself, Otto understood what makes a lecture boring and what makes it interesting. He demonstrated this by having his first slide as a little joke to some lecturers who have a monochrome background and speak by entirely watching the screen.

He captivated the audience by having videos, pictures, participation and a story all whilst promising an early lunch. He firstly showed us his journey through later school life and through the basic training phase of RAF officers’ course, this I found particularly interesting as I am looking to do this myself. Next, he showed a recruitment video which showed off just what “toys for big boys” (as Mr Parry put in the lecture lunch) the RAF has in its locker.
After this he wanted to address the problem we face, that the Armed forces is only for men by showing a video highlighting that women do the same jobs just as well if not better than men. After somehow selling the RAF to me even more, Otto got onto the point of his presentation, University or not. He showed us his brother who had gone to University and said that it saved his life as he found that his hobby of robotics didn’t really help the academic subjects required at sixth form and A Level. He then went on to do Robotics at University and said that he loved every moment and he has managed to turn his hobby into his job.

Finally, Otto talked about two things that no matter what you do, you need - drive and motivation. “To get anywhere you need to have drive and motivation”. Over lunched we discussed future careers of Engineering, Medicine, Electronics and Piloting. We also heard an interesting or discerning fact that Engineers are the most personnel that are hit by Snipers. I would like to thank Otto for giving a very interesting lecture and showing a keen interest in my Scholarship application and my journey into the RAF.

The Nicholls Lecture Series is part of Birkenhead School's Inspiring Talks Series.

Click to read articles about other guests from the Nicholls Lecture Series including Lord Nicholas WilsonDr Jaclyn Bell, and Jonathan Quinn