Athlete Katie will use Executive MBA to support children’s charity

Katie Hewison
Katie Hewison

Former professional triathlete Katie Hewison is used to pushing herself to achieve her goals.

The 2011 world duathlon champion and Commonwealth mountain running champion last year began an Executive MBA at Lancaster University – which she completed during lockdown, just after the arrival of her second daughter.

Katie, who achieved a distinction for her EMBA, now plans to use it to support the development and growth of the charity she works for.

“I don’t know how I did it”, said Katie, who gave birth to her daughter Rosie in March, a week before lockdown started. “I am used to juggling a lot and I thrive on high pressure. I just get on with things and that’s my athletic upbringing, to just keep going.”

Katie was a professional athlete for five years, and then started working for the Barrie Wells Trust, which provides memorable experiences for seriously ill children. She progressed to General Manager of the charity in 2019 and began studying for an EMBA at Lancaster.

She said: “I began working for Barrie and the Trust after retiring from professional triathlon. Barrie began sponsoring me in 2009 and has been a huge support and inspiration to my journey as an athlete and now progressing in business as he sponsored my study for the EMBA. Working for a charity that aims to support and enhance the wellbeing of other people is an incredibly rewarding job and I feel lucky to have the opportunity to now give back to an organisation that has closely supported me.”

Katie started her maternity leave from the Trust early to work on two EMBA modules before Rosie was born. She said: “I had six weeks off from my due date, and then I started back up with a three-year-old and a six-week-old. During lockdown it was actually a relief to be able to work on my EMBA to focus on something different as a break.

“I knew I was borderline for a distinction and I put a lot of pressure on myself and that was probably the hardest part of the whole thing.”

Katie plans to return to work in January, in a slightly different role focusing more specifically on the strategic development and growth of the charity.

She said: “The EMBA has been such a valuable and worthwhile experience in helping to develop my knowledge of business and management and I am looking forward to returning to the Trust where I will be working more closely on the business development side of the charity, helping to firstly re-build the Box4Kids initiative post-Covid but to also support the longer-term development and growth of the charity.”

Box4Kids invites seriously ill children to enjoy sporting and entertainment events from the comfort of executive boxes. The project has so far provided VIP experiences for nearly 10,000 seriously ill children and their families, in boxes in more than 100 iconic sporting and entertainment venues.

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