Meet Daniel Ashead. Daniel has lived an adventurous life, and those many adventures has helped him discover his future career…
I have had quite a unique upbringing from the day I was born, which, I believe, has made something of an original in terms of behaviours, attitudes and world view. I was born the son of a soldier in the British Army, almost 31 years ago, and have lived a varied and itinerant life ever since.
All around England, Northern Ireland, Czech Republic, East Africa, Oman, are just a few of the locations I have lived or worked, which includes four schools, two colleges, one University and approximately fifteen jobs.
The positives of these periods of instability (e.g. meeting different people, contact with different cultures, etc) far outweigh the negatives (e.g. interruptions in education, lack of very strong life-long friendships). I have experienced more than most people twice my age and I thank my parents for the life they chose, which offered me a lot of those opportunities and filled me a zest for adventure and a stubborn reluctance to lay down roots in any one location.
However, I must say that the best times have come since my first year on University. I have been fortunate enough to spend a prolonged period working in Rwanda and travelling East Africa, where I tracked chimpanzees, plunged into the source of the Nile from the end of a bungee rope, speed down rapids on a raft in Uganda and fully immerse myself in the local and rural communities to discover how wonderful the spirit of Africans is. While in Rwanda, I was working in poverty reduction with a local Rwandan charity run by medicine and pharmacology students. An extremely fulfilling and humbling experience, which gifted me some great friendships that still exist today. It is what inspired me to decide where my future career should lie: in international development. I want to be part of the global initiative to reduce poverty and assuage the suffering currently felt in developing countries. But currently, I could not be further from that reality. At present, I work for a large business process outsourcing company, while also modelling part-time. I live in London and have been in the city for fifteen months after moving back to the UK from Prague.
Prague was probably the happiest I have been in my 31 years breathing oxygen. The most beautiful city in Europe, it has a slower and less chaotic pace than in London, along with a wonderful expat community and cheap cost of living. I love the city so much, that, currently, I cannot get out of the habit of taking all my holidays there whenever I take time off work. One thing I do want to do in the near future is go back to Oman; a place I haven’t seen since I was 12. The main impetus behind that is to treat my parents to a trip back next to the coastal city of Salalah, where they lived for two- and-a- half years. It would be a beautiful present to repay all the support they have given me during my turbulent times as an adult, where I have made some bad decisions, but also experienced a multitude of successes thanks to their patience and support.
I have many diverse interests, including American sports, art, literature, music, theatre, politics, philosophy, cooking, writing and blogging. So I always manage to find something in common with everyone.
If I could be anyone for a year it would be Tom Brady and as a super power I would choose invisibility.