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Professional Boxer, Joe Maphosa, inspiring students in his role as Enterprise Adviser at Hollis Academy

Ahead of his upcoming English superfly weight title fight in August, Joe met with students to talk about his career so far, how he prepares for a fight and the personal qualities needed to succeed.

Students learnt about the hard work and self-discipline needed to be a professional boxer.  Joe talked about the importance of having a good diet, training hard as well as having plenty of rest.  He explained how sometimes he’s had to sacrifice things, such as going out socialising with his friends and being able to eat what he wants, in order to be the best, he can be.   Joe also talked about how he made it to the GB Boxing Team for the Rio Olympics and explained to the students how important it is to be resilient when you get knock backs or find something difficult and that you can overcome disappointment and continue to chase your dreams.

Students also took part in a coaching session and had the chance to spar with Joe.  They did warm up exercises and learnt some boxing moves.  Many students were inspired to take up boxing in their spare time.

Vice Principal, Andrew Wilson, said “One of the main developmental aims for our students is to teach them the importance of being resilient. This life skill is extremely important as it gives people the strength needed to process and overcome hardship. Those lacking resilience get easily overwhelmed and may turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms. 

Joe Maphosa is a well-respected member of the local community and is admired by our students. He has been through several traumatic experiences in his life that has required a resilient attitude. Joe’s inspirational presentations to our students have been inspiring, uplifting and have changed the mindset of some of our most vulnerable students. I cannot thank Joe enough for the time that he devotes to helping our young people.”

Enterprise Advisers come from a range of backgrounds, sectors and sizes of business.  The session that Joe Maphosa delivered focussed on his specialist knowledge of boxing but the messages of working hard, preparation, overcoming disappointment and being inspired to follow your passion, could apply to many different aspects of working life and the students could resonate with the messages that were communicated.

 “I am really excited to be an Enterprise Adviser in the Tees Valley community. Coming from a deprived area, I’ve seen how easy it can be for children to go down the wrong path without anything positive to focus on. With my experience in sports, I’ll try to support and inspire as many young children as possible in my area.” Joe Maphosa.