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Academic Lecture: Vicki Fong


Mount Old Scholar, Vicki Fong, returned to the school to deliver an Academic Lecture which looked design, textiles and designing a better world with those concepts changing in a post-digital age.

Vicki’s presentation began with a letter from The Mount’s then-Headmistress, Barbara Windle, to Vicki’s parents as she neared the end of her GCSE studies, which marked a step-change in her life. Vicki examined the evolution of her studies and subsequent career which included becoming Senior Lecturer with the Royal College of Art’s Textile faculty.

Vicki’s journey is one of improvement, seeking out ways to improve the environment around her to make life for others better. Each stage of her story was marked with intense reflection, on pivotal moments for herself, her students and even her employers. Each story was peppered with pearls of wisdom and quotes reminiscent of The Mount’s #DailyTexts, such as “Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen and a push in the right direction,” – John Crosby. She shared images and event a video of works her students had created, which represented overcoming an obstacle that had hitherto stymied them. A video evoking the seven deadly sins was particularly striking in its stark visual textures, yet ends of a note of hope.

Lockdown marked a new route for Vicki. Keen to boost her students’ mental health through boosting their physical health, she started weekly online fitness classes which rapidly grew in popularity. This deepened her journey into exploring design for wellbeing and eventually led to teaming up with her sister, Becki (also a Mount Old Scholar who pursued a professional career on the International Tennis Federation’s Women’s circuit) to form BOSH Fitness.

Vicki definition of ‘textile’ is broad, fluid useful. ‘Textile’ is more than mere fabric, it becomes the medium for creating design that improves lives. She attributes this to her parents, and also to her experience at The Mount and the School’s unique Quaker ethos. “The younger me definitely didn’t appreciate it or make the most of it. The current me realises how invaluable my time at The Mount was. I believe that the Quaker values taught have been hugely influential in my beliefs, in how I connect with others, and how I contribute to the world around me,” she said.

The next Academic Lecture was to be Rupert Gray, who has had to cancel due to unforeseen circumstances. Nigel Bidgood returns in the Summer term with a Borealis talk.

Vicki’s sister Becki, mother Sue and Vicki in The Mount’s beautiful Art rooms, where her love of art and creativity was nurtured.
Vicki (left) with sister Becki (right) were very impressed with The Mount’s refurbished Fitness Suite


Vicki’s cousin Louise and sister Becki with The Mount’s former Head of Art, Mrs G and former Art Technician, Francesca King.

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