Mustapha Ogun is a Patchwork Masterclass 2019 Graduate. Mustapha is passionate about social mobility and transforming the lived experience of our future generation. He is now a member of the Patchwork executive team and recently became a trustee at African and Caribbean Diversity (ACD). ACD is a charity focused on improving the academic attainment, career prospects and social mobility of black students, aged 14 – 18, from London state schools. Mustapha currently works at Deloitte within their Risk Advisory practice.
What are you currently up to?
I am currently an Assistant Manager at Deloitte, working within the Risk Advisory practice. We provide advisory or implementation support to our clients in the financial services industry undergoing strategic or regulatory change; helping to resolve their specific business challenges. I enjoy the dynamics of my working structure, both in terms of clients and colleagues, as well as the opportunities to make an impact. Outside of my role at Deloitte, I am also a trustee at African & Caribbean Diversity, a charity focused on improving the academic attainment and social mobility of black students.
You mentioned you’re a trustee, can you tell us more about that?
Before becoming a trustee, I was fortunate enough to participate in the organisation’s mentoring and enrichment programme. During the earlier stages of my development, ACD granted me access to resources that enabled me to build life-changing connections and improved the perspective I had of my overall educational attainment. My history with the organisation made my transition to trustee fairly straightforward. I was invested in the organisation and made myself available for opportunities to support others in the way that I was supported in my formative years. In my capacity as a trustee, I oversee current initiatives such as upgrading the organisation’s internal software and accounting systems and work with the organisation to develop new strategies focused on achieving our objectives.
What is a cause or subject you’re particularly passionate about?
Homelessness is a cause that I am particularly passionate about. The future is unpredictable, and the possibility of being homeless is one that not a single person can evade. There are several reasons why a person may end up on the street, but everyone deserves a second chance; the support to reintegrate into society to fulfil their full potential should be a basic provision. Homelessness can be a vicious cycle, one that is challenging to escape, but with the right support and opportunities to take positive steps in the right direction, the journey to re-establishing independence can begin. I regularly volunteer with Crisis, the national charity for homeless people, particularly during the Christmas period, and I often complete challenges to promote and raise money for this charity. Raising awareness about homelessness and what can be done to help is vital to ultimately eliminating this issue in the future.
What do you hope to be doing in 10 years’ time?
In 10 years, it will be 2031 and I will be 37. Professionally, I would have established myself in a senior position within my industry – or perhaps I would have retired to undertake a passion project abroad. Personally, I would have successfully mastered the art of a work-life balance! Also being happily married – perhaps with a child or two… I’ll still be involved leading and supporting various volunteering initiatives (including Patchwork). Most importantly, I hope to be able to look back on the 10 years prior, knowing that I have made a lasting impact on the lives of others.
Why did you apply to Patchwork and what did you get out of the experience?
I became aware of Patchwork through a friend who previously participated in the Masterclass programme. My friend spoke passionately about Patchwork and the opportunities it provides to learn about British politics in a practical way. I thought this sounded interesting, so I had to apply!
I have always had a deep theoretical and ideological understanding of politics – I studied politics during my A-levels and went on to complete my undergraduate degree in Politics and Philosophy. However, before I participated in the Masterclass programme, I never really got involved in politics. The Masterclass changed my perception of politics in the UK and helped to bridge the gap between my theoretical understanding of politics and what we experience in our everyday lives.
Through the Masterclass programme, I have been able to gain an insight into the lived experience of various political figures, gaining an in-depth understanding of the roles they play on the political stage. I do not believe that I would have had this access outside of the Patchwork programme.
What advice would you give to this year’s Patchworkers?
Firstly, keep the soft skills in mind. In addition to a deep insight into British politics, Patchwork provides the opportunity to develop soft skills like building confidence, chairing meetings, and public speaking – make the most of this!
Secondly, network. There is a lot you can learn from the people in your cohort and perhaps build life-long friendships! With the variety of participants, aged 18-30, you will engage with individuals who are at different stages of their life and have a wealth of experience to share.