Sophia Monkman

Qualification & subject:
Undergraduate BA (Hons) Equine Business Management
Operations Executive at York Racecourse

Sophia studied BSc (Hons) Equine Management at Hartpury. Once graduated she then went on to work at the four seasons at Thirsk Racecourse as Sales and Marketing Manager. After this she then started at York Racecourse on March 2016 as their Operations Executive. This was a completely new role for her and something she had had never done before. She works closely with the police, City of York Council, St Johns Ambulance and the Health and Safety manager as these suppliers and stakeholders are all vital when putting on a race meeting. One of my main roles is managing all the race day staff, of which there are more than 160.

Sophia's Hartpury Experience

"At first I wanted to be a presenter, but getting into that isn’t easy. I was at Badminton and I saw that at Hartpury University, I could focus on the equine business side. From then on, I always knew it was going to be Hartpury. I had a ball at Hartpury and made lifelong friends.  I wanted to work in racing industry and Cheltenham was only down the road.

During the second year I started doing marketing and really enjoyed studying these modules. I realised that’s what I wanted to get into. It was doing marketing in my second year that led me to do my sandwich year placement at York. They had a large fashion event and I was able to drive that project. It was a fantastic experience. It was through my placement that I was offered a job after graduation. I was marketing assistant at York and I learnt a lot and gained some really valuable experiences. Delivering good racing is what is important to me and it doesn’t always feel like work."

Developing Industry Connections

"I had to approach many different places and work really hard to get to where I am now. You have to have a fantastic CV and personal statement. I applied to 12 different places for my placement and used 12 different statements. I am always adapting my CV.

I would advise people to always write a letter, instead of an email, and send it to the most senior person. You should always chase up letters if you haven’t heard from them and show them how passionate you are."