BT launches The National CV 2012
In the BT Tower with its panoramic views of London, at the launch on May 21st: on the far left, Val Risk, BT Director of Volunteering, wearing a boater; on the right, wearing a boater, Dr John Hart, Director of The National CV Group; Richard Norris, BT Volunteering Programme on the far right; James Fairlie, Director of Business Strategy & Planning, fourth from the right.
The creation of a CV for the nation of Britain - a written description of Britain's work experience, educational background, skills and achievements - was the brilliant invention of Dr John Hart and The National CV. As you can imagine, this took teamwork and reams of historical research.
BT has just sponsored a National CV version suitable for the very persons about to write their own CVs - young people.
Val Risk introduced BT, the CV and Dr John Hart with charm and wit. She pointed to British Telecom's history as one of the largest telecommunications services companies in the world, and the oldest, and one of the most innovative. BT's origins date back to the founding of the Electric Telegraph Company in the 1840s. The first company in the world to develop a nationwide communications network., BT has expanded into more than 170 countries. It seeks to be inspiring, trustworthy, helpful, straightforward, and with a heart, qualities which Val personified.
BT has shown corporate courage by seeking ways to get the National CV into schools. Sandie Dinning, Director of CSR Strategy & Planning, is convinced this is a project whose time has come.
Dr John Hart, the CV's energetic and optimistic director, has been quoted as saying: 'In this Jubilee and Olympics year the international spotlight will be upon Britain. . . .self-deprecation, false modesty and understatement should be sent down a figurative flush toilet - the real thing was invented here in the reign of Elizabeth I - in favour of inspiration and a more buoyant sense of belonging, which is our modern take on patriotism'.
8,000 years an island
England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Island, etc.
Left to right, Cat, your Brits editor in a boater, historian and CV contributor Rupert Willoughby in a boater, and tall Lord Lucas listen to Hart's overarching argument:
Britain has made a disproportionate contribution to civilisation, while representing less than 0.2% of the world's land less than 1% of Earth's people at any given time. Britain launched the modern world (constitutional monarchy & parliamentary democracy, science, Age of Reason, industry, second agricultural revolution) and has made many other pioneering contributions (TV, jet engine, antibiotics, World Wide Web, English language); the British are The Influential Islanders - and Britain is 'applying for the future'.
Lord Lucas, for whom education is a compelling, main interest, publishes The Good Schools Guide. Like the Guide, Lord Lucas has 'a brisk, conversational and often irreverent style of review'. He gave a fascinating presentation, and called the CV 'an important and exuberant exercise at just the right time'.
Unable to attend the CV launch, Professor Robert Tombs, the author of the new report on the poor state of history teaching in Britain's schools, agreed:
'It seems to me a really original idea to have [history] in the form of a national CV, and I can see how it would appeal to children (and adults!). I'm not sure, obviously, that I would agree with every detail, or would have made the same selection, but complete agreement would probably be impossible and not really necessary. . .I quite see why you want it to be lively, surprising and uplifting. . . .I find the negative tone of much writing on British history annoying and silly, and not helpful for us as a nation, and I think your project would help to counteract it.'
Our website contributed a piece to the CV about Britain's Constitution (after first proving that Britian's Constitution exists and some of it is in writing, of course). We compare the Constitution to the rules for sports, and describe the attitudes and ideas and constitutional principles which have made Britain's CV possible.
BT will support a digital CV, and make it available to schools, where more than 1,000 BT employees serve as School Governors. Also bruited, a school DVD with Hart, whose school presentations are electrifying, and leave students with an appreciation for Britain's ancient and modern history, momentum and marvels.
Supporting the claims in the CV is a vast CVpedia database. Dr Hart encourages us all to boat through the CVpedia, even as he advises:
'Dwell in the centuries to make yourself wise;
But don’t tarry too long, the future’s the prize.'
All photos thanks to Richard Norris BEng MIET CSM MAPM, BT Director Volunteering Programme.