Last week, pupils at the Cognita family of schools based in the United Arab Emirates, The Royal Grammar School Guildford Dubai, Ranches Primary School, Horizon English School and Horizon International School, were treated to an inspiring visit from Arsenal and England national team professional footballer, Beth Mead MBE.

During her visit to Dubai, Beth spent time in each of the four schools to host talks and meet and greet sessions with the pupils as part of Cognita Middle East’s world-class enrichment programme, Enrich ME, for which she is the Founding Ambassador.

Throughout the engaging and motivational sessions, students were invited to ask Beth questions about her career and had the chance to discover her advice and tips on pursuing a career in sports, as well as her secrets to success in football and leadership. On Saturday morning at the Royal Grammar School Guildford Dubai (RGSGD), the girls who are part of the Enrich ME football programme had the chance to showcase their skills under the watchful eye of Beth as part of the regular select squad training sessions.

Beth Mead commented: “I’m delighted to finally be able to visit Dubai and meet the young people who are part of the Cognita Enrich ME programme in person. I hope that this week’s sessions have inspired them to have the courage to try new things and to explore their passions and that I have been able to convey that a career fuelled by passion is the key to happiness.”

Beth added: “Having started my own football journey at just six years old and now fortunate enough to play for the Women’s Super League Club, Arsenal and the England National Team, I fully embrace opportunities that inspire young people worldwide to get involved in sports and other enrichment programmes that will help them discover the possibilities that a career in these fields hold.”

On meeting Beth at RGSGD, 10-year-old Mollie said, ‘’I never thought I could be as skilful or as passionate about football as Beth Mead, but her visit showed me that with hard work and dedication, I can achieve my sporting dreams too.”

Director of Football for Cognita Enrich ME and former Assistant Manager of the top division Swedish Club, AIK Stockholm, Sean O’Shea, commented: “Beth Mead’s visit was a great inspiration to our students and her role as Cognita Enrich ME’s Founding Ambassador highlights the importance of sports and enrichment programmes in providing a holistic education. We are grateful to Beth for taking the time to help encourage and develop the next generation of Cognita students in pursuing their passions and encouraging them to strive for excellence, whether on or off the field.’’

The Cognita Enrich ME programme launched in October 2022 and combines everything that enriches students’ lives, such as sports, music and the arts with expert coaching provision to provide them with unparalleled opportunities in football, swimming and academic excellence. The inclusive programme allows the four schools to expand their curriculum and provide an even higher quality learning experience to the 4,000+ students they have enrolled, as well as helping high-performing students to achieve professional results.