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Katie Sykes

UCLAN GRADUATE TO Director, Katherena Limited

Katie’s passion for fashion stemmed from her love of photography as well as putting together outfits and looks for her own shoots. With this in mind, Katie sought a course which would teach her a wide range of skills in the fashion industry. She discovered that the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) was perfect place for her to follow her dream career, as the BA (Hons) Fashion offered a plethora of modules from styling and marketing, to design history and computer aided design.

What did Katie think of her time at the University? “The best years of my life!” she exclaims.

Her favourite memories included “trying to make the most out of everything in the last year, spending a lot of time in the Students' Union and just as much time in the library too! Summer Survival will always be the highlight for me.”

Katie landed her dream graduate job after getting her degree: working as styling assistant for top London fashion stylist Frank Strachan. “I was lucky enough to intern for him on the X-Factor during my time at UCLan, and then he happened to need a full-time assistant just after I moved back home from Preston.”

After working hard in London and putting a lot of time and effort into Frank’s brand, Katie decided to move back home start her own company, Katherena Limited.

“I am fortunate to have supportive parents who have helped along the way, both financially and mentally.”

When asked to give out advice to budding fashion students, Katie says: “You have to be willing to do work experience and internships outside of the course. Don't think that having the degree alone will take you places and land you with the best jobs; I found that as soon as I had some good companies or people on my CV it opened up doors to other opportunities.“

“The people I met at UCLan have definitely made an impact on my life, without a doubt. I am still in contact with people on my course, flatmates and other people within the fashion industry.”