26 September 2022
Having just wrapped up a decorated swimming career, Lauren Hew wasted no time deciding her next move – inspire young athletes to soak up all the sporting world has to offer.
"If I had not been exposed to sports at a young age, I would not have gained the irreplaceable memories and experiences through my involvement in swimming," said Hew, who returned to Cayman this summer and served as a camp leader at Camana Bay's Multi-Sport Camp through Dart's summer Work-X students programme. "From gaining lifelong friends to being able to travel the world, there are so many things to gain from involvement in sports."
Hew this year finished her final season swimming on Florida State University's Women's Swimming & Diving team, where she also served as the team's representative on FSU's Student Athlete Advisory Committee. Her standout career included representing the Cayman Islands at the CARIFTA championships – where she was a medalist – and an appearance at the FINA World Championships. She still holds several Cayman Islands Aquatic Sports Association and national age-group records.
"As an athlete who represented Cayman at many international sporting events, I can’t express how powerful sports can be in bringing people together and creating amazing opportunities," Hew said.
Her time at the camp offered her a glimpse of the sporting world from the other side – not as an athlete but as mentor, coach and organiser. She spent four weeks helping coordinate the camp's activities and keep the children – ages 6-14 – engaged.
"It was a good challenge but extremely rewarding to see the kids having fun playing sports," she said.
Hew now returns to Florida State this semester to finish her undergraduate degree in Sports Management before diving into a master's degree programme. She hopes to graduate with a Master of Science in Sports Management in May 2023 before moving back to Cayman and finding a full-time position in sports.
"I have gained so much in this life through sports, so I want to be able to take from my experiences as an athlete and utilise it in my career to create positive experiences for others," Hew said. "There is so much room for opportunity in sport in Cayman so I am excited to see where I could possibly make an impact."
This article was originally published in the September/October 2022 print edition of Camana Bay Times.