Not sure about the royalty allusion, but enjoyed this conversation with TopHat about my own roots and trajectory in education.

Top Hat is the active learning platform that makes it easy for professors to engage students and build comprehension before, during and after class. This interview is part of our recurring series “Academic Admissions” where we ask interesting people to tell us about the transformative role education has played in their lives.

Internationally known as an authority on creativity and innovation in education, Sir Ken Robinson is the first to admit he didn’t arrive fully formed. As he tells it, his ideas about education reform were shaped by his own history: Growing up with polio in working class Liverpool he knew he’d have to earn a living by using his head, not his hands, so he worked hard to differentiate himself academically.

He took it upon himself to add culture to the grammar schools he attended and never ceased to be fascinated by the diversity and potential of the people around him. His passion for pursuing ideas that interest him has led Robinson from Liverpool to the international spotlight—the author of multiple bestselling books, including The Element and most recently, Creative Schools, he’s advised governments and cultural agencies on educational reform, delivered the most-watched TED Talk of all time and been knighted by Queen Elizabeth for his services to the arts.

Read the full interview here.