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The Debrett’s Academy and the Debrett’s Network are working together to promote social mobility through the Debrett’s Foundation. The Foundation provides young stars with training in business skills as well as access to the powerful Debrett’s Network, allowing them to secure internships, work experience and mentoring opportunities.


Launched in 2014, the Debrett’s Foundation is a not-for-profit division of Debrett’s which supports and champions social mobility to ensure that the next generation of leaders are from all walks of life and backgrounds, and to help them become the people of tomorrow.

The Paired Peers study – led by researchers at Bristol University and the University of the West of England – found that wealthier students were ‘far more able to draw upon family resources and had access to influential social networks’ to help get work experience or internships during their degree.

Through the Foundation, Debrett’s sponsors high achieving students who have been nominated by their school and selected to attend the Debrett’s Academy. The Academy delivers training in areas such as interviews and networking to help provide the skills and confidence to network and gain work experience. Students also benefit from access to the powerful Debrett’s Network, providing opportunities for work experience, internships and mentoring within the business areas they are considering for their future careers.

Debrett’s Foundation invites sixth-formers, all of whom have been nominated by their teachers as high achieving, ambitious young adults, to our central London townhouse to receive training in practical skills such as first impressions, interviews, public speaking and networking. At lunch, guest speakers, including chief executives, creative industry leaders and tech entrepreneurs – many of whom are within our People of Today and Debrett’s 500 network – graciously offer their time to inspire our students, who are encouraged to demonstrate their newly-learned networking techniques. Foundation alumni are then put in touch with mentors and work experience opportunities, again through the generosity of our members and other volunteers.  

It was so interesting to learn about the extra little things that we can do to improve people’s first impressions of us. The training day has provided me with many vital skills that I cannot wait to put into practice in the future. I can sense that my confidence has already grown so I will be ready to go when it comes to meeting new people and forming contacts with them (Aneeka Hussain, 16)

One-day Programme

  • Networking Introduction
  • First Impressions
  • Elevator Pitch & Small Talk
  • Business Leader Speech
  • Networking Lunch with Business Leader
  • Interview Skills
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