Former student Laura Baxter returned to Fife College last week as part of the College’s Enterprise Hub. Laura was one of a host of guest speakers brought into the Enterprise Hub to inspire current sport students at St Brycedale Campus.
Laura left Fife College unsure how successful her career in sports development would be. Now, she is director of her own business, Lead to Exceed, Head of Delegation for the 2019 Special Olympics, and Head of Club Development for Scottish Archery.
Returning to Fife College to share her inspirational story with current students, showing the ups and downs of being an entrepreneur, carving a career with determination and perseverance, and also working in a male dominated industry as a woman, Laura was delighted to get back to her roots. She said: “I came to Fife College to begin training towards my dream of being a PE teacher but, while I was here, I realised that coaching and sports development were the key areas I wanted to work in.”
Starting a niche business has not always been a smooth journey, though, as Laura explained: “Over the past few years I have used coaching skills and growth mind set to drive my business forward; overcoming the hurdles in my path and become a successful consultant, opening sport up to more people through developing infrastructure.”
Curriculum Manager for Administration, Enterprise and Information Technology, John Elliot, arranged the event with the benefits to current students in mind. John said: “We were delighted to invite Laura in to discuss her success with our students.
“Her drive and persistence is infectious, and her entrepreneurial outlook can help our students realise that they can follow their dreams. We have helped our students gain the skills they need, now we hope to instil them with the confidence and vision to carve out their own career.”
Over 60 students and staff attended the talk, with students asking a variety of questions about Laura’s journey, her ‘lightbulb moments’ when she realised her career was moving in a new direction, and for tips about working in a male dominated industry as a young woman.
While Laura’s career specialised in sports development, it was clear to see how the lessons she had learned and her strategic vision would fit in any industry.
Laura finished by saying: “It was important for me to share my story as I want to empower everyone to see – it can be done, the only restrictions are the ones you place on yourself.”