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    Lily

Lily McKernan

EDI / HR

5 bits of advice to my teenage self…

  • Everything happens for a reason. Despite it being cliché, you have to trust the process!

  • Remember that nothing is as stressful as it seems at the time.

  • Revise more for your French A-Level…..

  • Be more confident in showing your creative side, whether it be musically or artistically.

  • Don’t be afraid to say yes to any of the opportunities you are offered, you never know what it might lead to.

About me

As a teenager…

I was fortunate enough to grow up in Geneva, Switzerland. I was able to immerse myself in a new culture and make good use of the natural environment that surrounded me. I would play football weekly for my local team whilst also snowboarding on the weekends. I remember I once had a “last minute” and “non-reschedulable” dentist appointment during a school day which really translated into my dad sneaking me and my siblings up the ski slopes. During school I was consistently getting told off for talking – I thrived off the social aspect of school however lacked enthusiasm for the academic part. Growing up I was very hands on and active, building huts in the forest and riding my bike around with the neighbourhood kids. My love for sports developed into coaching primary school teams of football within local school tournaments. When moving back to England I had to establish a new life – new school, new friends and new home. This was daunting but I allowed everything to fall into place naturally, trusting myself and my gut. After settling in, my teenage years in Lancaster became some of my favourites.

After school…

I applied for lots of uni courses that required A*’s and A’s, and unfortunately, I didn’t get into any of them. At the time I knew I hadn’t done sufficient work over sixth form, so left my family holiday early to collect my results on my own. This was a humbling stage of my teenage years… but I wouldn’t change the way I navigated my school years for the world. Looking back, everything would sort itself out… An exam cannot define your ability! Through clearance, I secured a place at York St John and completed my undergraduate degree in Sociology with Police Studies. I played football for university until my ankles gave in and I like to think it’s like they say, I could have gone professional if I hadn’t had an injury… I never knew what I wanted to do when I left for university, and still didn’t know when I graduated. All my friends were in the same situation, which comforted me. Don’t worry if you don’t have a burning passion for a particular career path just now, everyone takes time to find what’s right for them. I then moved onto tackling my Master’s degree in Liverpool, which was a degree in Human Resource Management. I’ve always enjoyed working with people so I thought building from my sociology degree would be a good move.

Now I’m…

In a place I never thought I’d be! After my Master’s degree, I struggled to find a job for a couple of months. Thankfully after a lot of interviews (and a lot of rejections…) I landed the job I was hoping I’d get. On top of working for Network Rail, I was also fortunate enough to be offered an opportunity to work for E2M as a trustee! Aside from work, I enjoy visiting my grandma in the Lake District, going to concerts and cooking.