Telford College’s link-up with Wolverhampton Wanderers football club has enabled dozens of students to get priceless experience behind the scenes of a Premier League competition.
A group of 40 students were enlisted to help with the organisation of the national Premier League Primary Stars football competition for boys and girls across the 20 top division clubs, held at Wolves’ Molineux stadium.
One of the highlights of the Premier League Communities calendar, the yearly event allows hundreds of youngsters the chance to experience the thrill of being treated like a top-flight footballer.
The job of the Telford College students was to ensure the event ran smoothly, making sure each team was in position to play at the correct time, and had their photographs taken with the Premier League trophy.
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Kyle Jordan, one of the students, said: “The link between the college and Wolves has given us some once-in-a-lifetime experiences. We get to do lots of work outside the classroom with the Wolverhampton Wanderers Foundation.
“At this event, I was organising the pitches my team was playing on, keeping scores and making sure the players knew what time they were next on.
“We were there as volunteers, but we were also getting observed as part of our unit where we have to work in a live sports event.
“The best part of the course has been the new units that have been brought in this year, I’ve really enjoyed training and training programming, nutrition and technical and tactical skills in sport.”
Fellow student Ryan Connelly added: “The Premier League Primary Stars tournament was a good day out. There was some real talent on show, representing the different clubs.”
Ashley Bowler, learner manager for sport at Telford College, said: “The day was an excellent opportunity for over 40 of our students to get real experience of working in the sports industry at the highest level.
“They conducted themselves in a brilliantly professional manner, working closely with the Wolves foundation team to ensure the smooth running of this high-profile event.
“The feedback from the Premier League regarding our students has been extremely positive, and as a result they are happy to provide all of our students with references to support them in
applying for future roles in the sector.
“We look forward to giving our students more opportunities like this in the future.”
Jonny Warburton, senior education officer at Wolverhampton Wanderers, said the Telford College students demonstrated their hard work, proactiveness and communication skills on the day.
“Without their help and support the event really doesn’t flow as smoothly as it should, so they should be really proud of their efforts.
“When they look back at what they achieved, I hope they have a sense of pride at being involved in a national Premier League event.”
The 320 players taking part in the event wore their club kit, used the same dressing-rooms as the professionals on matchday, and matches were refereed by Premier League officials, including Andre Mariner, Chris Kavanagh and Kevin Friend.
There is still time to enrol on one of Telford College’s latest programme of sport courses, being run in conjunction with Wolves.
They give students access to Molineux Stadium and Compton Park Training Ground, and a chance to work closely with UEFA-licensed coaches and undertake practical and theoretical workshops to advance their learning.
For details, see HERE or call the course hotline on 01952 642237.