Singer who toured world becomes a mentor to inspire Redbridge youngsters

A music star who has performed at Glastonbury and toured all over the world has now set himself a new challenge – to become a student mentor.

Afjal Miah, 31, former lead vocalist of band Asian Dub Foundation, started working at Redbridge College in Barley Lane, Little Heath, last week.

The college employs a team of four mentors who support students by acting as a link between them and the academic staff.

Afjal recorded three studio albums with the Mercury Prize-nominated band between 1999 and 2007, touring alongside industry heavyweights such as The Prodigy, Sean Paul and Radiohead.

After starting a family, the charismatic frontman decided to leave full-time music behind and pursue a career in education.


You may also want to watch:


He said: “I’ve been lucky enough to visit lots of fantastic places on tour and meet many wonderful people.

“What I want to do is use my experiences to show young people that if they work hard there are great opportunities out there for them.

Most Read

“I can talk to students on their level and there is a rapport there. I have been getting involved with everything from ICT and business to cooking and I want to make college fun for the students who I love being around.”

Before joining the college, Afjal gained experience as a teaching assistant and worked with young people with emotional and behavioural difficulties at a variety of different schools.

The father-of-two, from Wapping, added: “I have been through most things that these students are experiencing. My aim is to make sure young people are getting the best out of themselves.

“It’s all about building a trust, and I couldn’t wait to get stuck in.”

Afjal, also known by his stage name MC Spex, continues to be active as a musician and will be performing at gigs and festivals this summer and outside of term time.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus