Alumni - 2000's
Please click on the menus below to view the achievements of our former students from the 2000s
Dominic Matthews - Year of leaving: 2002
Smithdon was a wonderful, caring school where you could push yourself to achieve. I distinctly remember the teachers treating me with a great deal of respect and providing a fun community to grow up in.
I graduated from University in 2005 and from there I took a marketing and PR role at a small event organising company. After a couple of years, I joined Capcom, a video game developer and publisher in a marketing position at their European HQ in London. In 2010, I joined Ninja Theory – a video game developer in Cambridge – again in a marketing position. 10 years later and I am now head of the five-time BAFTA winning company (in the role of Studio Head), looking after 100 staff and pushing our ambitions as a studio recently acquired by Xbox Game Studios.
Message to Current Students:
You can achieve anything. Do not waste a single day thinking that you cannot. A couple of people have said to me in my career: ‘Not bad for someone from Norfolk’. I never understood what they meant – because you can achieve anything you want, from any school and from any upbringing. Look at the world around you, think about where you want to go in life and find your drive to push yourself to be the best you. When I was your age, I wanted to work in Video Games. I have done it. Not because I was the best academically, I was not, but because I have believed in myself and what I can achieve. You can too.
Jade Jenkins - Year of leaving: 2007
My memories of school are not always the best to be honest. I did not like school much, this this was not a reflection on the school or the teachers as honestly, they were the best. My issue with school was the fact that I never thought I was ‘brainy’ enough for it. It is only now in adulthood I realise that being ‘brainy’ has nothing to do with it. If you are focused, determined and passionate about what you want to do in life then that is all you need.
Since leaving Smithdon High School I attended the College of West Anglia where I completed Level 2 and Level 3 NVQ in Beauty Therapy which I enjoyed thoroughly. At the age of 24, I decided that I wanted to be a Nurse. I returned to college and completed a one-year Access to Science and Nursing course which enabled me to successfully apply to University. I completed a three-year degree at UEA in Adult Nursing and graduated in 2016.
Today I work as a Junior Nursing Sister in the Operating Theatre Department and some days honestly, I cannot believe I am being paid to do the job, it is true what they say, ‘If you find a job that you love then you will never have to work a day in your life’
Message to Current Students:
School and education, it is not for everyone. Some students excel and pass with flying colours whilst some may not always get the grades that they wish for. Do not let that discourage you. I did not go to university until I was 25 years old and even then, there were students on my course older than me. So, guys... it is never ever too late! And I cannot stress that enough. All the best for the future wherever your path may take you.