25 September 2019
Georgina Slawinski - the first recipient of the Women in Football/FBA scholarship
Back in May, The Football Business Academy (FBA) made a fantastic #WhatIf pledge to Women in Football – #WhatIf The FBA offered two scholarships of 50% each on the fees for its prestigious Professional Master course.
The first recipient of the Women in Football scholarship is Georgina Slawinski, 21 – and we caught up with her just before the Professional Master course began to find out a bit more about how she sees her career and opportunities developing as a WiF scholarship student!
Women in Football: Hi Georgina! Tell us a bit about yourself – what’s your background, where you’ve worked before and what’s your connection to football...
“I’m so passionate about taking on every opportunity that comes your way. Without this mentality, I wouldn’t have built the credible network I have, and I wouldn’t have had the opportunities I’ve been fortunate enough to have throughout the years, which I am so grateful for.
“People who know me well know that I’m an avid sportswoman. I was always that one person at school who loved everything and anything PE related. Netball was the sport that at one point, I was playing almost every day, so when I told my coaches and family I was going to study football, there were a few shocked faces. I stood by my decision and I’m so glad that I did, otherwise I wouldn’t be where I am today!
“Some of my experiences and roles include being the sub-committee CEO of AFC Basildon Girls & Women, working for The Football Association as a team liaison officer, both of which I carried out whilst studying for a BA (Hons) Sports Business & Coaching at UCFB Wembley. Following this, I’m proud to say that I graduate next month with a 1st class honours degree. Also, whilst studying, I carried out my Level 1 football coaching certificate. In addition to this, some of my experiences include volunteering with Wolves Foundation and Watford Girls Academy, and working as a multi-skills assistant coach for ICanPlaySport.”
WiF: How did you hear about the Women in Football and The FBA scholarship?
“I heard about the WiF scholarship through being a member of Women in Football. I received an email explaining The FBA #WhatIf pledge – and my dream all started from there! I am so grateful for this opportunity; receiving this scholarship will always be something I take with me and remember, as I progress throughout the industry. At the age of 21 (one of the youngest candidates to study for Professional Master course) to have someone believe in you and see your potential is a huge honour. I am eternally grateful. I know that there have been and still are upcoming opportunities as part of the Women in Football #WhatIf campaign – so keep an eye out and you could be one step closer to your dream, like me!”
WiF: Which part of the course are you looking forward to the most?
“The course is everything football and I am looking forward to every single module! I love to be challenged so I’m excited for this throughout the course because ‘if it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you’. I have to say, I’m someone who loves being creative in business, so I am looking forward to the entrepreneurship module. I’m keen to get that ‘Eureka moment’ for a business idea that I can take forward.”
WiF: How do you think these kinds of courses assist women in the football industry?
“The flexibility is one key element to this type of course; you have the opportunity to work around your studies with the FBA’s online learning system. This course allows you to network and meet people from all over the world. Already, I have learned so much from my classmates and The FBA alumni and professors, who all have a wealth of knowledge and experience within the game. I’m so happy to be representing Women in Football on the course! I hope I can inspire other women to get involved with all aspects of football and sport, and to see more women involved with The FBA in the near future.”
WiF: What would be the ideal next step for you, career-wise, after the course finishes?
“I’m so open to the opportunities out there in the football industry, which is why I’m so excited to learn more about the industry and the opportunities available. I would love to progress into a senior management role within a club or within an association. So, I’m aware it’s going to be about building up my network and experiences; I know The FBA is the perfect next step for me to do all of this and more. I’m even keen to start my own business within the game. Ultimately, my main goal is to be a respected leader and role model for all women aspiring to play or work in football. I want to make a positive difference to the game, encouraging and inspiring the present and the future generations to get involved in the game we all love!”
WiF: What would be one piece of advice you would give to other women working in the football industry?
“One quote that I love and that has always stuck with me is ‘Be like a turtle and stick your neck out’. In other words, if you see an opportunity that you would love to do, or if you want something, go for it. Have confidence in yourself and believe that you can do it! I truly believe if you put your mind to something, work hard and persevere you will achieve what you put your mind too!
“Sadly, Imposter Syndrome is such a common thing, but my advice is to try and recognise what are feelings and what are facts, and be in charge of your journey to success.”
WiF: What do you love about football – and who do you support?
"I love football! The history, the evolution to this huge global phenomenon that we now call a business, the ever-growing developments... it all interests and fascinates me. Another reason why I love football – and the wider sports industry – is that it’s so unique. When you follow a club, it’s a club for life, there is so much loyalty involved and that’s what makes the industry so special. I have to say I am a Wolverhampton Wanderers fan! There’s so much history to the club and there are so many exciting developments being made there, on and off pitch. So, from both a business and playing perspective, it’s an exciting time as a fan to be a part of the game, but also as an aspiring football businesswoman because I’m learning so much from the developments being made from all those involved at the club.
Sport is such a powerful thing that can be used in such a positive way to make a difference to people’s lives and that’s why I want to get involved!”
To find out more about The FBA’s courses, go to https://the-fba.com/
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