Laidlaw Foundation Visit (September 2021)

Article by Joe Linogao (Engineering with Management, 2021 Laidlaw Scholars)

On the 15th September 2021, the Laidlaw community at Trinity College were invited to take part in a presentation and reception as part of a visit to Trinity from the Laidlaw Foundation. It was a day where we finally got to see each  other face to face after a year and a half of being under lockdown and meet some of the important members of the Laidlaw Foundation, which included both the CEO of the Foundation, Susanna Kempe, and Lord Laidlaw himself. I was super excited to not only meet them  but finally meet my cohort in person for the first time.  

On top of that, however, I was given the opportunity to give a presentation about my  project and my experience with the programme alongside my supervisor. It may not seem  like it, but this was a huge step for me! Back in August, I took part in the public speaking  workshop and ever since then, I’ve been itching to give a talk to a wider audience. I never  felt so confident, and everyone seemed to enjoy my talk. Being able to comfortably talk in  front of an audience just highlights many of the benefits the programme has to offer. If I  was asked to give this talk back in 1st year, I would have declined in a heartbeat! 

Here’s a picture of me giving my talk! Don’t let them know my barber ruined my hair before this talk! 

Afterwards, me and two other members of my cohort were invited to attend a speech in  honour of Lord Laidlaw for being a benefactor of the college. It was also the first time I met  our Provost, Linda Doyle, in person too. I also got to talk with some members from the  other cohorts, which was very fun!  

Once the speeches were done, we ended the day at the Provost’s estate with food and  wine. Not to undermine everything I’ve done on the program so far, but this was the  moment where I knew that the Laidlaw Programme was one of the best things to happen to  me during my time at college! Getting to talk with people in person for the first time,  sharing stories, and enjoying the atmosphere was amazing to experience.  

Here’s a picture of me and one of my cohort friends, Sophia from Psychology 

I talked about it with Joel McKeever (programme coordinator) and Lord Laidlaw, but I highlighted what puts the Laidlaw  Programme at a different league than other scholarships. What I love most about the  programme is the time they put into developing every Scholar to their fullest potential. I feel that  they try to get to know each Scholar, and give them advice on how to develop as a leader. It  makes it easier to be excited about these events and to give back for all they have done for  me.  

I also love being able to talk to people outside of my course and get to learn about their  experiences at Trinity College. Without the programme, I wouldn’t have made the effort to talk to people outside of Engineering and would have missed the opportunity to become friends with  some wonderful people! 

So, that was what I had to say after the first big Laidlaw event. I hope you enjoyed the read, and  I look forward to sharing more of these stories and experiences in the future!

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