The mother of Stephen Lawrence, the teenager murdered in a racist attack in east London in 1993, paid a visit to West Herts College in Watford.

Baroness Lawrence spoke to students from courses in Health and Social Care and Early Years in the college theatre as part of their work towards equality and diversity last week.

Students discussed many topics with the baroness, including her peerage, the work and future goals of her charity and her own inspirations and motivations.

When asked about her peerage Baroness Lawrence said: “It has been a nerve-wracking experience. When I received the call from Ed Miliband I had to ask him ‘what does this mean?’ I had to go away and think about it. When I accepted, I did so on the premise that I would speak my mind and not always agree. It has been a brilliant and exciting experience.”

On the subject of motivation, Baroness Lawrence said: “I am motivated by the look on the faces of the young people we [the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust] help. I am motivated by the younger generation and their achievements – we have an individual we helped with a bursary five or six years ago, and now they have their own practice.”

Speaking around the subject of equality and diversity with the students she said: “There needs to be more discussion, young people need to talk about it more. People need to talk about intolerance and make a stand.”