A mature student at Sheffield Hallam has been recognised for her bravery and drive to succeed by retraining as a quantity surveyor.

Katie Howarth, who has just completed her second year of study at Sheffield Hallam, received the regional award for the Association of Women in Property Student Awards for the Yorkshire and North East region.

Before beginning the course, Katie had previously worked as a nurse for ten years but decided that she wanted to pursue her passion for a career in the built environment.

She said: “This wasn’t just a competition to me; it was a personal transformation.

“I went into the process with a positive attitude and a sense of ‘you can do this’, so it was such an amazing feeling to actually win.

“It took a few days to sink in, but I feel incredibly lucky and privileged.

“I would like to thank Collette Turner, Luke Bennett, Louise Kirsten and Katie McManus who were all fantastic mentors. They guided me every step of the way providing me with constructive feedback which I listened to and used for the big interviews and presentations.”

After being nominated by their university, nominees were then shortlisted via submission of their CV and an interview before judges from industry and higher education.  Katie then attended an online awards ceremony where each of the 15 finalists had to submit a one-minute video showcasing themselves and their work.

As well as a cheque for £500, Katie also received a trophy and access to Women in Property’s mentoring programme and the chance to represent the Yorkshire & North East region at the national final which is provisionally planned to be held at Claridge’s in London in September.

Katie was nominated for the award by quantity surveying course leader, Collette Turner.

She said: “Katie’s change of career from nursing, took courage. She is clearly motivated by a strong passion and drive to retrain as a quantity surveyor and to carry out the role to the best of her ability.

“She has been a role model to younger students on her course that needed support with making that initial transition to university study. She has also shown her ability to provide insight and advice to mature students wishing to change career and make that leap into the construction industry.”

The Association of Women in Property aims to create opportunities, expand knowledge, and inspire change from women working in the property and construction industry.

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