"I began my placement not really knowing what area I wanted to go into but came out with a direction, obtained a masters in that area and now have the role of Strength and Conditioning Coach at the Surrey Scorchers."
CourseSport and Exercise Science BSc (Hons)
Placement companyBritish Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association
Choosing to do a placement
Initially I didn’t apply for a degree that had a year’s placement as part of it. My degree gave me exposure to different areas of sport science to help you choose which path you wanted to go down. When I started looking into graduate roles, they all required experience of working in professional sport. Undertaking a placement gave me the opportunity to gain a year's experience and provide me with a clearer direction on the path I wanted to go down. It was a significant CV boost as well as putting me ahead of other candidates when it came to looking for future roles.
I experienced different aspects of performance support such as strength and conditioning, coaching, analysis and logistics teams. The opportunity was even there to get involved in the engineering side of sleds! It was continuous professional development.
I always knew I wanted to work in sport but was never sure on exactly which area. It was from the flexibility of the programme that I really became interested in strength and conditioning.
The role also allowed me to travel, spending time in Germany, Austria and Latvia. All the while I was working, I was learning, collecting data and ideas for my final dissertation, which really helped when it came to writing that in my final year!
Boosting my employability
Undertaking the placement definitely made me more employable. There were jobs I had in my final year and after I had graduated, such as working at Harlequins RFC, that I would not have got without this placement. I began the placement not really knowing what area I wanted to go into but came out with a direction, obtained a masters in that area and now have the role of Strength and Conditioning Coach at the Surrey Scorchers because of the placement.
It was good for my development in so many ways, both personally and academically, and for improving softer skills such as time management and organisation, but also my confidence and focus. You had the experience and the knowledge to take into your final year.
Stand out from the crowd
For my degree and the area I wanted to go into, you need experience. There are so many people who leave university with a sports science degree. Undertaking a placement in a professional club or any aspect of sport can help you stand out from the others and put you ahead of the game when starting your career.
My placement experience in one word…
Find out more about our Sport and Exercise Science BSc.