University of Brighton Alumni Association

Amy with one of her mentees and professor Chris

Alumna Amy Hitchinson on being part of the Momentum programme

We caught up with alumna Amy Hitchinson who told us about her experiences as a Momentum mentor…….

I graduated from the MA International Events program in 2010 — a Facebook Memory popped up the other day with photos from the graduation ceremony 10! Years! Ago! Feels like a lifetime ago but also can’t believe I’ve been here that long. I’m Canadian (from Toronto) so came as an International Student and now a British Citizen.

Amy with one of her mentees and Professor Chris Pole

I work in Sports, professional tennis mainly, in athlete management for an agency. I started my tennis career as an Event Assistant for the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association) and even found myself back in Eastbourne (where I studied in 2009/2010) for the Aegon International event. From there, I worked at the WTA (Women’s Tennis Association) for 7 years within the marketing, communications and commercial teams.

I had never been part of an official mentor program like Momentum Mentoring. However, I have been fortunate to have a long-line of mentors and support along the way … I certainly wouldn’t be where I am without them.

Mentorship doesn’t always come from those ‘at the top’ or ‘above’ you … Throughout my career, I’ve met a lot of really intelligent and successful people — from athletes to media personalities to CEOs and Executives but also learned a lot from colleagues, interns, volunteers and students whose paths I’ve crossed. You never know who will inspire a new idea, provide perspective or give you the courage to follow your instincts when its needed.

I’m very grateful for all the people who have taken the time to share their experiences with me and I think it’s only right to pass that along – to pay it forward.

I have been part of the Momentum Mentoring Program since 2016. I chose the program given my connection as a student / Alumni — it was outside my comfort zone but not too far. I had also hoped it would give me a natural connection to whoever I was paired with. As I was still progressing in my own career and life, I was nervous that I wouldn’t have anything to share or advice to give. I really didn’t have anything to fear — the program’s team do such a great job with matching mentors and mentees and in that first year I’m not sure who got more out of the program – me or my mentee.

At the beginning, I was worried about finding the time,  especially as I travelled for work (and am based in London) but we made it work with in-person meetings, messaging check-ins and video chats which is now the norm for everyone.

I’m still in contact with some of the students, but not all. I’m currently paired with my 7th mentee, and looking back, I have been amazed and inspired at how much each developed over our time together — and also what I learned about myself and life in general every time.

Best advice I’ve ever been given? This is a really hard one — I think it would be to keep looking forward. There’s no point in getting stuck in all the “what ifs” of the past. Even if something fails – take the learnings and move forward.

And always be kind. You don’t have to be friends with everyone you meet but being kind to others doesn’t cost you anything.


You can find out about more about Momentum and become a mentor here. 

Nic Ashton • February 10, 2021

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