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Hayleigh Thompson

Sports Development with Coaching

What appealed to you about Northumbria University / studying in Newcastle?

Newcastle appealed to me as I am still close enough to my home in Burnley but still far enough away to live my own life in Newcastle. My first impression of Northumbria was that everyone was friendly and helpful in helping me around the campus. Also I loved the city and felt comfortable to move away from home.

What was it about the course that particularly appealed?

The course appealed to me as it was coaching I enjoyed,  however I also found the development side of  the course interesting as I thought it could be a possible career option.  I found that all the tutors that I met on the open days were enthusiastic about the course which interested me.

What qualifications did you have?

Previous to university I studied a BTEC Diploma in Sport and Exercise Science at Burnley College. My results were DMM which got me into university along with having GCSE Maths and English.

How did you feel during your first week at Northumbria?

My first week was amazing at Northumbria as it was fresher’s week. I met so many people during that week which made living in Newcastle so much easier and comfortable. Sharing a flat with in my first year was difficult as I only got along with one of the people, which made the house not as fun as I expected;  however I still had an amazing year because I met other people in the other flats who I live with now in my second year. My first day at University was a bit scary but everyone is in the same situation so it is easy to start talking to someone and make friends.

What do you like most about the course?

I like the feedback and help given from the tutors. Also in my first year students on my course got an opportunity to go on a retreat to the Lakes. I enjoyed this we all got to know each other and make friends. I feel a lot more comfortable now on my course as I recognise everyone.

Can you give an example of a piece of work you’ve been involved with recently?

Recently on my course I have been involved in a research proposal which at first I was worried about. However I got a lot of help to make sure I understood what was being asked in the assignment. Also as part of the course I got to go on a trip to the Lakes which was classed as one of my assessments for the year. This was a good experience as I got to meet new people and I did a lot of outdoor activities such as: rock climbing, zip wire, canoeing, camping and team building.

How do you get on with your tutors?

Everyone gets on with the tutors as they are there to help you and make sure you get the best degree possible. The tutors at Northumbria are not like school teachers or college tutors who tell you off or talk to your parents - they understand you’ll want to go out and live the student life as well as study.

Do you have the opportunity for any work placements during your course?

As part of my course I got the opportunity to work in a disability school for six weeks. This was a great experience as I was given a paid role in the school during the summer.

What do you do when you’re not studying?

I am a member of the University gym and also a member of the swimming team. It is good to be part of a team as it is a great way to meet people and sport teams have a lot of socials and fancy dress nights out.

What’s your accommodation like?

In my first year my accommodation was called Manor Bank. My room was very modern with my own shower and toilet, the kitchen was newly refurbished with a lot of space to store food and drink. My house in second year is in Jesmond, a very popular area with students. It’s a family house with four bedrooms, large living room, kitchen, one bathroom with shower and bathtub, shed and a garden.

What would you like to do when you graduate?

My ambitions after I graduate are to become a teacher in a disability school. This has changed since starting university as I thought I would want to have a career in sport development. My change of career has been influenced by my placement.

Do you have any advice for anyone applying for your course, or for university in general?

My advice would be not to worry about not getting on with anyone or meeting anyone because you will and I didn’t get along with my flatmates but I still had an amazing first year and have met some amazing people. I wouldn’t worry about money in Newcastle for drinking as there are loads of cheap bars and food is cheap as there are a lot of markets you can get cheap meat etc. As for studying, Northumbria has a 24 hour library which everyone uses to borrow books and do their work.

What three words would you use to describe your time at Northumbria?

Unforgettable, Amazing, Life Changing


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