Tricia is a US para-athlete, author and public speaker who signed up to the Intel Mentoring Program to gain a better understanding of the corporate sector.

With the support of her mentor, Deanna, a sales director at Intel, Tricia is building a clearer image of her future and thinking bigger than ever before.

You can sign up for the Intel Mentoring Program today and receive free one-to-one expert advice and support to help your own career transition.

The unique level of mental discipline that athletes have can 100 per cent be applied to a corporate setting. Instead of seeing the impossible, athletes think: how do I make that happen?

Deanna Waun

You can’t lose by participating in the Intel Mentoring Program. Your motivation, your self-esteem and your confidence when it comes to the professional world will only grow. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I signed up, but it’s proved invaluable for me – it could for you too.

Having recently moved from working at a school to a global firm with 300,000 employees, I was seeking a better understanding of the corporate sector when I signed up to the programme. During my first call with Deanna, I told her about my new position at a major consultancy firm, as a learning designer, and some of the challenges I was facing. She immediately offered suggestions and ideas for me to consider – she really took the ball and ran with it, and I knew from there that her mentorship could be really valuable to me.

Since then, we’ve been connecting once a month and our conversations are so authentic. I can be open and honest about what I’m going through or thinking, and she’ll pick up on an area that she can see is bothering me and give me a few solutions. It’s always about turning any situation into a learning experience.

Expanding my horizons

I have a much clearer vision of my future now, and I’m finding myself thinking bigger than I ever have done before. I have more motivation and interest in moving up the career ladder, and that’s down to the conversations I’m having with Deanna. She’s inspiring me to raise my expectations of myself in a professional setting, and not rule anything out.

As athletes, we build so many of the soft skills needed to excel in the business world, and it’s important to know how to connect those skills to a new environment and role. Deanna has shown me that and that, with the right support and ambition to better myself, the sky’s the limit.

We’ve also had wonderful discussions that have had nothing to do with work. We talk about our lives outside our day jobs as well as my sporting career – it’s not just a business relationship, it’s developing into a friendship. I feel as though she’s somebody I will be able to reach out to after the programme concludes.

My mentor has shown me that I can transfer the motivation and drive I have as an athlete to my professional job

Tricia Downing

Coaching is part of Intel’s culture. I’m in this to help others realise their potential, and Tricia is in it to realise her full potential: it’s a great fit.

Deanna Waun

Taking the shortcut

It’s at the end of our sporting careers when we’re considering our transition that we need the most support. Through the Intel Mentoring Program, Intel and Athlete365 are stepping up and helping athletes understand how desired the skills we’ve gained from our sporting career are in business. This programme is exactly what we need. I know how difficult it can be to figure out what comes next when you retire – and that’s where a mentor can come in to help you navigate that stage of your career.

This programme is just one of the many things that I have put my name out there for, because you never know who you could meet to help you on your journey moving forward, and what opportunity might subsequently come your way. By sharing her expertise and advice, Deanna has helped me to take the shortcut instead of having to learn lessons the hard way. As athletes, we should take advantage of any opportunity that comes our way.