Thursday, 1 October 2015

UCLan extends partnership with Plas y Brenin

UCLan Outdoor students will continue to enjoy practical sessions with the UK's top provider of outdoor adventure activities, following confirmation of an exciting partnership between the University and Plas y Brenin.

After a successful trial period UCLan has teamed up with the National Mountain Sports Centre in North Wales, where they will help deliver selected courses over the next three years.

Outdoor Leadership and Adventure Sports Coaching students will benefit from the expertise of UCLan and Plas y Brenin staff as they tackle a diverse range of modules.

These will develop their practical, coaching and leadership skills via a range of activities including mountaineering, rock climbing, white water kayaking, sea kayaking, mountain biking and canoeing.

UCLan's Institute of Coaching and Performance will also work closely with Plas y Brenin on research projects, including understanding the judgement and decision making processes of experts in adventure sports that will help to influence the future development of the outdoor profession over the next decade.

UCLan Outdoors Senior Lecturer Loel Collins said: "We're very excited be in a position to maintain our relationship with the National Mountain Sports Centre. It's a partnership that reinforces UCLan and Plas y Brenin as leaders in the field of development in this sector.

Dave Cheetham, Marketing Manager for Plas y Brenin, added: "We're over the moon to be working with UCLan's students and their staff, and we hope it will be a relationship that extends long into the future.

"UCLan is committed to helping its students achieve and surpass their goals, and to helping them convert their learning into rewarding careers in the outdoors. We're convinced Plas y Brenin can play a significant part in helping them do that.

"Alongside top-class coaching, world-class facilities and state-of-the-art-equipment, the students will also have the benefit of being immersed in the exciting and inspiring world of a National Sports Centre, surrounded by high performance athletes, coaches and enthusiasts all eager to help.

"They'll share time with many of the country's most successful climbers, paddlers and riders, and have the opportunity to communicate directly with decision makers from the governing bodies of those sports.

"With input from the best in the business at UCLan and Plas y Brenin, these students will enjoy the best foundation for a career in the outdoor industry."

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

SSTO Graduation 2015

On behalf of everyone in the school I'd like to congratulate you on your Graduation Day.

You've all put in a huge amount of time and effort and today is about celebrating your fantastic achievements. I hope you're all proud of what you've achieved and your families are too.

I feel particularly proud of what many of you have contributed to our local community during your time with us, either through course work or simply volunteering.

Across the whole school this year we've raised huge amounts of money for local and international charities - thank you for helping to make a difference.

Please keep in touch with us and follow our social media feeds. We'd love to hear what you're up to in the future and about your future successes. Good luck with whatever you're doing – enjoy your day, you've earned it.

Dr Adrian Ibbetson, Head of School.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

SSTO welcomes college partners

The SSTO welcomed staff from six partner colleges to UCLan for a two-day event designed to ensure the continued quality of our Foundation Degrees.

College colleagues from Runshaw, Myerscough, Wigan & Leigh, Preston, Blackburn and Burnley took part in the event, which provided the opportunity to moderate the programmes and discuss examples of good practice.

Sport Science, Sports Coaching and Health & Personal Training courses were the focus of attention, with staff collaborating to share ideas and iron out any issues.

Burnley College programme leader Craig Trafford commented: "The event helps us make sure our work is consistent across the partnership. It's an opportunity to sit down with colleagues from other colleges to check if we're delivering in the same manner and to share useful hints and tips.

"We can also investigate whether anything needs changing ahead of the next intake of students. Having the chance to meet face-to-face is extremely useful, especially for new members of staff who can learn off those who've delivered the courses before."

Scott Threlfall from Runshaw College added: "These events allow us to quality assure our cross partnership working to ensure marking and feedback is consistent.

"Our students use the foundation degrees as a platform to progress to the full honours degree at UCLan's Preston campus, but we also see some go straight into their vocation which pleases us – as long they progress and we signpost them accordingly."

The event was organised by the SSTO's Quality and Partnership Lead, Louisa Jones. She said: "We invite our partners to come along to the university as part of our quality cycle to moderate each other's work.

"It's also an opportunity to join UCLan mentors from each subject area to provide parity from an SSTO perspective. This ensures grading is consistent and our staff can act as mediators if there are any issues. They can also look at ways to develop the modules and make enhancements where appropriate."

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Students continue to make a difference at Green Gecko

Students from the SSTO's Tourism, Hospitality and Event Management programmes have raised around £5,000 for a children's charity in South East Asia.

As part of a final year module the students organised a series of events ahead of a life-changing trip to Cambodia to visit the Green Gecko Project - a school for disadvantaged children.

The trip helps students enhance their learning in a developing country, whilst gaining personal and professional skills by volunteering at Green Gecko.

The group also experienced the rich culture and diversity Cambodia has to offer by visiting various tourist attractions, including the famous Temples of Angkor.

Dr Philip Stone accompanied the students during the trip. He said: "This was my first visit to Cambodia and the Green Gecko Project and I left with an overwhelming sense of the warmth and hospitality of the Khmer people.

"The contribution of the staff at the project to the children and their immediate families was also amazing to see. I was delighted our students had the opportunity to add a very positive contribution during their visit. I know they thoroughly enjoyed the experience which will stay with them as they graduate and beyond.

"The trip was a huge success, largely thanks to Pete McGrath's meticulous planning, leadership and organisation of the module, as well as students' engagement in teaching and learning at Green Gecko."

This year's total takes the overall amount raised by SSTO students to over £43,000 – cementing the school's commitment to making a difference to society. Student James Price said the trip has inspired him to consider a possible career in education.

"My time in Cambodia was an eye-opening experience that I'll never forget," said James. "I saw some amazing sights and made some brilliant friends. Green Gecko was my highlight - being with the children and teaching them new skills was incredible. This experience made me think a career in teaching is the way forward."

Abi Housley added: "Thank you for giving me the opportunity to be part of the trip and meet the Gecko kids - it really has been one of the best experiences of my life to date.

"People keep asking me how it was, but there really are no words to describe my feelings. All I know is I will definitely be going back there one day."

To view a selection of images from the trip please click here.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

SSTO develops international programmes

Louisa Jones has been jetting across the globe to promote SSTO courses to international students at a variety of partner institutions.

In her role as Principal Lecturer Quality Assurance & Partnership, Louisa travelled to Cyprus, Vietnam, Malaysia, China, Hong Kong and Singapore to oversee our provision of a variety of programmes.

These included Tourism, Hospitality & Event (THE) Management courses, along with our newly-introduced Sports Science offering.

Louisa spent time discussing opportunities for new collaborations, conducted interactive sessions with students and worked with staff from other UCLan course areas including Journalism and Pharmacy & Biomedical Sciences.

She also attended Graduation ceremonies, networked with numerous external academics and chaired a course approval meeting at Hebei University, China.

During her tour Louisa checked on the progress of Hospitality Management students currently undertaking international internships, whilst the penultimate destination on her itinerary saw her greeted at Westin Xiamen Hotel by THE Alumni Martin Verpoorten, who is the General Manager.

Louisa commented: "Our overseas portfolio of courses is a key part of SSTO's continued commitment to offering a truly international experience to its students. The various partner institutions do an excellent job in delivering these to help create the global citizens of the future.

"It was nice to see how some of our Alumni have progressed in their respective industries and also to witness the progress of our current students undertaking internships. Hopefully they will use this experience as a springboard into successful careers after graduation."

Thursday, 9 April 2015

UCLan teams up with Camp America

Students can now put their international experience towards a postgraduate-level degree, following a new partnership between UCLan and Camp America.

The Camp America Graduate Scheme allows students to gain 20 academic credits and a postgraduate certificate in International Industry Based Experience for their summer's work. These credits can then be put towards a relevant full degree, which are typically 180 in total.

An introduction to the course is held over two days at UCLan's Preston Campus on 1-3 May, where students get to attend a range of lectures and workshops.

The rest of the work is conducted online, and culminates in a written assignment which covers the personal, professional and academic development from the summer camp experience, based on recognised theoretical models and perspectives.

Nigel Garratt, Head of CPD at UCLan said: "This is a fantastic opportunity for students interested in postgraduate study. Experiences like Camp America can be invaluable for both personal and professional development, and this new initiative provides a unique chance to gain academic recognition too. Our expert lecturers will ensure the benefits of this experience are maximised."

Daniel Pugh, Marketing Coordinator at Camp America, said: "We're very proud of the skills that can be developed whilst working on a summer camp and we understand how it can improve employability prospects. This new opportunity will allow students to change their Camp America summer into something tangible, positively impacting on their continued professional development."

Students that wish to continue with their studies can progress to the next module, where an additional 40 credits are on offer for completing another assignment.

For more information please click here.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Careers event just the job for students

Our Division of Tourism, Hospitality and Events teamed up with UCLan Careers to stage its first ever Employers Forum.

A range of speakers delivered presentations about their companies, before offering help and advice on future career paths. Students were also given useful tips about creating eye-catching CVs and what prospective employers look for in job candidates.

Justina Ma from Marketing Lancashire opened the event, with Richard Simkin following on with an insight into his work with the Villa Group and his previous experiences in professional football.

Karen Bellew and Steph Williams explained the various options available with Merlin Entertainments, whilst Bill Jennings from Place Rec USA discussed the international opportunities available with his company.

Barry Fellowes and Wesley Royle from Hays Recruitment rounded off proceedings with an overview of how graduates should market themselves as they look for work.

Division Leader Jane Shaw said the event was a great opportunity for students to gain a better understanding of some of the challenges which lie ahead.

She said: "I'm really proud to have such great guest speakers come into UCLan and share their knowledge and experience with us. It's been a really interesting event and something we aim to build into our programmes in the future.

"We strive to give our students as much exposure to their respective industries as we possibly can whilst they're at UCLan, as we believe this is vital to their development."

Friday, 13 March 2015

SSTO staff support Embed the Pathway scheme

SSTO staff have been delivering workshops across Northern England as part of the RFL's new Embed the Pathway initiative.

Lecturers David Grecic and Robin Taylor visited Castleford and Stretford Academies to conduct sessions for parents of young players who are part of professional club set-ups.

Embed the Pathway is a talent development programme aimed at raising performance levels across all junior age groups, with the ultimate goal of creating players who will help England to World Cup success in the future.

David Grecic commented: "The hope is that if parents are more aware of the issues and methods of talent development, they can play an important role in supporting their child's journey to the elite level.

"The talks were streamed live to the clubs, but parents could also come along in person if they wished. The resources and activities used during the workshops are cascaded down again and delivered by coaches at each individual club to their players."

This initiative builds on UCLan's excellent relationship with the RFL that has been developed over the last five years. UCLan is the official education partner of Rugby League Learning and delivers the UKCC Level 4 coaching award to the sport's elite coaches.

For more information about the Embed the Pathway programme, please click here.

Monday, 2 March 2015

Careers Roadshow is a big hit

Over 700 students descended on UCLan to take part in an action-packed National Sports Roadshow.

The sports enthusiasts travelled from schools and colleges from all over the North West to enjoy a variety of hands-on activities.

These included practical sessions and interactive workshops in areas such as sports communications, coaching, management, science and therapy, all designed to showcase the diversity of careers available within the sports and fitness industry.

The students were also given the opportunity to test their own fitness and sports skills through elite coaching lessons and sports science laboratory demonstrations.

Nathan Browne, a 17-year-old pupil from King George V College in Southport, took part in a cycling test in UCLan's sports science laboratory which is used by professional sports teams and athletes including Wigan Warriors.

He said: "It was a great opportunity to try out some of the lab facilities at the University, as we don't have the chance to do things like this at college. The taster sessions have given me a good insight into the many possible sports related career options so I can start to focus on what I want to do."

Nathan's teacher Darren Brookfield added: "All of my students have enjoyed the event and the many activities on offer have allowed them to relate what they learn in the classroom to real-life, practical roles. They've also benefited from meeting industry professionals who've inspired the students to really push themselves."

UCLan's own students were also able to join in the activities as part of the University's Our UCLan Student Engagement Week. A host of leading sports organisations were in attendance including the Sports Therapy Association, the Institute of Coaching and Performance, Camp Leaders, PE Recruitment and Primal Health Academy.

Dr Adrian Ibbetson, Head of the School of Sport, Tourism and The Outdoors, commented: "We've really enjoyed welcoming so many young people who want a career in sport to our Preston Campus.

"They've been able to take part in a variety of activities in our multi-million pound facilities and meet the many industry professionals who've helped out at the Careers in Sport conference. The event has showcased just what job opportunities are out there in the sports industry."

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Undergraduate Research Internship Scheme 2015

The Undergraduate Research Internship Scheme (URIS) 2015 is now open.

The scheme provides students with experience of real research projects with high quality research outcomes. All disciplines and research clusters are encouraged to put projects forward.

Past schemes have led to hundreds of research outputs, many of them with the intern listed as a co-author.

Our interns have also presented at research conferences internally and externally, and many of them are now registered on research degrees.

Interns gain a tremendous amount from the opportunity, experiencing research 'first hand' while acquiring a range of transferable skills which can help secure a graduate job or postgraduate place.

For more information about the scheme and how to apply please click here. The deadline for project applications is Friday, 27th March, 2015.

For details about previous student internships, please click here and here.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Sports Roadshow returns to UCLan

The Careers in Sport National Sports Roadshow is returning to UCLan.

Over 1,000 people attended the previous event in 2013, which gave 16 – 18 year olds and university students the opportunity to gain advice from leading figures in the sport, leisure and fitness industry.

Students from a range of North West Colleges along with a number from UCLan were treated to a series of presentations, seminars and workshops from a variety of organisations including The Football Association, Manchester United Foundation, ICS UK and Coaching for Hope.

UCLan Academic Director of Sport Dr Adrian Ibbetson was delighted to welcome the Roadshow back to Preston: "We're very proud to have hosted the previous event at UCLan. It provided participants with the opportunity to better understand potential career options by having direct access to employers and 'experts' within the sector.

"The event benefited a range of learners, our own students as well as those from Schools and Colleges, and provided opportunities to further their skills and qualifications and enhance their experience, excitingly many of which were overseas.

"It was also a great fit with the University's curriculum themes - Employability and Enterprise and Global Citizenship - and we look forward to hosting the event again next year."

The National Sports Roadshow is at UCLan on Friday, 27th February, 2015. For ticket and booking information please click here. To view the programme of events please click here.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Living with Diabetes Day 2015

The SSTO is teaming up with the Diabetes Research & Wellness Foundation and specialist teams from Lancashire NHS and Lancashire University Hospitals to host the second annual 'Living with Diabetes Day'.

This unique event brings together people living with diabetes, healthcare professionals, academics, students and diabetes organisations to provide a wealth of diabetes information under one roof.

Living with Diabetes Day gives people the chance to learn more about diabetes and provide them with the tools and increased understanding to support a pro-active approach to good self-management skills and subsequently improve quality of life.

This year's programme will feature talks by specialists in diabetes on many different aspects of living with the condition, with a particular focus on the importance of healthy diet and nutritional choices, the benefits of activity and exercise, looking after your feet and eyes, how structured diabetes education can be a force for positive change and much more.

As well as the programme of talks, the vibrant social and exhibition area will also provide an opportunity to meet a variety of experts who will be on hand to offer advice on diet, nutrition, health, lifestyle and the latest blood-glucose meters and diabetes related products and services.

Living with Diabetes Day takes place at UCLan's Foster Building, Saturday 21st March, 9.00am – 4.00pm.

For more information please click here or for registration details click here.

Sunday, 8 February 2015

SSTO continues to make a difference

Our Tourism, Hospitality and Event Management undergraduates work hard to raise money for the Green Gecko Project, a school for disadvantaged children in Cambodia.

As part of their final year module 'Management Development', students organise a series of projects to raise both awareness and money for the charity, whilst also developing essential personal, management and problem solving skills.

In 2013/14 nearly £5,000 was raised, sending the overall total towards the £40,000 barrier - cementing SSTO's commitment to making a difference through education.

Over the past five years, students have travelled to Cambodia to visit the project as well as explore the rich culture and diversity Cambodia has to offer. The trip helps students enhance their learning in a developing country, whilst also gaining personal and professional skills by volunteering at Green Gecko.

Module Tutor Peter McGrath explains that the trip is a life-changing event: "Working with the Green Gecko Project is a truly unique experience for all involved and the children are always so very excited to meet the UCLan students.

"For me, to witness such passion, enthusiasm and energy between the two groups is incredible and as such I'm looking forward to the next trip in April to see how the Green Gecko children have progressed."

This year students are set to arrive on the first day of Cambodian New Year and celebrate a traditional Songkran Festival in the grounds of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Angkor Wat.

Student Paulina Lukaszewska said the trip is an opportunity of a lifetime: "I've always wanted to travel and explore the world, experience the cultures different to mine and it's amazing that through my degree I have a chance to do just that.

"The fact I can make a real impact on the lives of those less fortunate than me makes it so much more important than any trip I've been on so far.

"It will be great to see first-hand how our fundraising efforts are being translated into the great job being done for the children.

"From a professional point of view I'd like to see how tourism is affecting communities in developing countries like Cambodia, by investigating if the international chain hotels there are helping the local community through their Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives."

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Graduates return to inspire current students

A quartet of Tourism, Hospitality and Event Management graduates returned to UCLan for the Division's annual Leavers and Alumni event.

Bethany Entwistle, Hayley Bartholomew, Anthony Cardwell, and Alex Grebenar spoke about their career since graduating and also hosted a lively Q & A session.

Hayley, Anthony and Alex were back at the University for a second time, having attended the inaugural Leavers and Alumni event last year. Bethany graduated in 2014 and has since secured a role at Ribby Hall, Wrea Green. She said she was happy to have the opportunity to share her success story:

"It's really great to be back to see the staff and all the current students. I wanted to explain how I focused on getting into the industry and that there’s no right or wrong path for students to take – you just need to keep trying.

"It was a bit daunting facing a full lecture theatre, but I thought it went really well and the students took on board what we all said."

Division Leader Jane Shaw added: "It was a fantastic event. I feel really proud when our graduates come back and tell such positive stories about their progression – hopefully they will inspire this year's cohort.

"Our programmes prepare students for a successful career in their chosen industry and it's great see that happen. I'd like to thank Bethany, Hayley, Anthony and Alex for taking the time to return to UCLan and share their experiences."

Monday, 2 February 2015

Volunteer opportunity

British Wheelchair Basketball is looking for an enthusiastic volunteer to take on the role of Higher Education Wheelchair Basketball Officer (HEWBO) at UCLan.

For the remainder of this year you would work alongside the current HEWBO with the specific remit of developing wheelchair basketball at the University.

We need to establish regular sessions and a University Team by the end of this academic year in order to continue as the North West Regional Centre.

This position would suit a first or second year student who is committed to making a difference to sport at UCLan.

For further information or to submit your application please email Jess Macbeth.

Friday, 23 January 2015

UCLan Volunteering Fair 2015

UCLan's Centre for Volunteering and Community Leadership (CVCL) is hosting the 'UCLan Volunteering Fair 2015' during February.

CVCL has invited a variety of Trusts, Charities and other organisations onto campus to talk to students about volunteering, the benefits of volunteering and the opportunities they may have that students can apply for. The event is open to all students (Home, EU and International).

There is also a launch of the Graduate Volunteering Programme, and students who are graduating this year can visit the fair to ask more about the programme.

CVCL is dedicated to supporting UCLan students for up to 12 months after graduating in volunteering roles, providing advice, guidance, training and bespoke projects which they can get involved with to hopefully improve and boost their employability prospects.

The event takes place on Thursday, 26th February, 11.00-15.00, Foster Building.

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Preston Sports Awards 2015

Head of School Dr Adrian Ibbetson (pictured far right) recently attended the launch of the 10th Preston Sports Awards.

The annual event offers the chance to honour the unsung heroes and local sporting champions in the city through a variety of awards celebrating sporting excellence.

The 2015 awards will be presented by guest speaker Gail Emms (former World Champion and Olympic mixed doubles Badminton silver medallist). The event is sponsored by Walker Smith Way Legal, Preston, in association with Preston Guild Hall Ltd.

There are 17 different award categories - for more details please click here.