Sunday, 21 September 2014

Graduate secures Abu Dhabi role

Career paths often take many different twists and turns, with opportunities sometimes presenting themselves in unusual ways.

Taylor Collard spent some time in Spain, before joining the UCLan Coaching programme at Myerscough College.

After successfully progressing onto and completing our top-up course at Preston campus, Taylor has now secured a coaching role at the American University of Sharjah in Abu Dhabi.

He initially wanted to be an athlete, before going on to play semi-professional football for Club Deportivo Jávea in Spain. His coach there was familiar with the UCLan courses at Myerscough and recommended them to Taylor.

During the course of his studies, he undertook a work placement at Preston North End FC as an Academy Assistant as part of a Work Skills Development module. Halfway through his second year he was taken on as a Performance Analyst, recording data for the Youth and Academy teams.

Taylor said the transition from Myerscough to UCLan was rewarding: "Going from a class of 20 to 150 had its benefits in that there were lots more fellow students to be supported by. Some of my FD class topped up to the same course so I wasn't totally alone.

"Being able to actually study at the university and learn different aspects of sports coaching was great as there were a wide variety of disciplines within the course, such as gymnastics, cricket and rugby.

"We learned from each other, particularly through an online blog we conducted as part of our module called Practice and Reflection. I really enjoyed the intellectual discussion that went on during the workshops - it was a different level to what I was used to.

"We discussed the psychology of athletics, the difference approaches used by athletes and how that affects their performance and the suitability of that approach to their sport.

"I'd like to thank Cliff Olsson at UCLan who was open and approachable, and always asked how I was doing when he met me. Chris Yiannaki at Myerscough was also very helpful. I'd absolutely recommend the UCLan Sports Coaching programme to others."

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