As another season and school term approaches, the excitement of welcoming new student athletes to the UDA Academy at the University of Chester heightens. This season we are pleased to welcome 21 new students from all over the world, to the UoC academy.
We are even more excited that our student athletes will have the chance to live on campus and experience what it's like to be a student in the historic City of Chester.
Our mission is to change lives through education, and we believe that through the continued success of the UDA UoC Academy coupled with Chester's campus, academic programs, faculty and outstanding facilities will allow our student athletes to not only live our mission, but exceed their goals.
Going into this term, our goals remain the same - to help student athletes find a program in which they can study, live and thrive. For incoming recruit Connor Bagby from Bardstown, Kentucky we believe we have done just that, "what drew me into the UDA program was the idea of playing soccer abroad and taking away a new set of technical abilities. The sports coaching program drew me into the UoC program because of my interest in coaching athletics" stated Bagby.
In addition to playing football year round, our student athletes will gain the skills they need to be successful off the pitch.
Joel Roberts, Program Director for the UDA UoC academy reflects on the experience students can expect at the academy. "Academically [student athletes have the] opportunity to study a specific subject area and complete their degree in three years, culturally they can experience life abroad in an historic city such as Chester with its transport links to the rest of the UK and Europe and athletically they have the opportunity to play year-round, experience an elite-level coaching and player development environment and off the field a chance to watch live soccer from the EPL to non-league."
Roberts believes there are several elements that contribute to the success of student athletes at the UoC program. On the pitch athletes can "consistently seek to improve as a player, [which comes from] being part of team's successes and responding well to setbacks." Off the pitch Roberts added that success comes from "developing new friendships, experiencing a different way of living, opportunities to travel and developing your independence and leadership skills" which all contribute to the culture of the student athletes at the UoC program.
Thinking ahead to his time at UoC, Bagby remarked, "I am hoping to take away a greater knowledge of soccer and a broader understanding of cultures from the UDA UoC Academy."
There is a lot to look forward to beginning this fall and welcoming a new set of parents and students to the UDA family is just one of them. "We are also delighted to welcome back our returning students who've made their lives here alongside the incoming players who add an injection of freshness to the program" stated Roberts. "Most notably, I'm looking forward to the opportunity for us all to get back out on the grass and play!" added Coach Roberts.
Our student athletes are just as eager to start this term, "I am looking forward to playing soccer with a new set of teammates and hopefully being able to connect and create new friends." stated Bagby.
Amidst the busyness of a new term, our head of player support, Gaynor Crompton will be there for each student, equipped with the ability to help students get settled and prepare for a successful year both on and off the pitch. We are excited to see our student athletes thrive at the UDA UoC academy.
interested in learning more?
UDA is pleased to introduce Nadia Ibrahim-Taney as part of the Dream Maker Program for UDA students.
Nadia studied a degree in the UK and has first-hand knowledge and expertise on how to effectively leverage a British degree in the U.S. job market in order to maximize the chances of landing interviews and negotiating higher salaries.
Nadia Ibrahim-Taney is the founder and principal career coach for Beyond Discovery Coaching. She is an experienced higher education administrator with a prestigious tenure of working with American students in the United States and the United Kingdom.
Nadia founded Beyond Discovery Coaching as a way to combine her previous experience as a British university recruiter representing over 45 UK universities and her current role as a career coach at a U.S. university.
As a career coach, Nadia helps students design happy and fulfilling (dream) careers and mentors students through the transition from university to the professional workplace. Students find her unique insights on resume writing, interview prep and LinkedIn optimization particularly helpful in their job search.
Students are welcome to contact Nadia directly via email in order to learn more about working with her: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can view Nadia’s work on Instagram at @beyonddiscoverycoaching to learn about her career coaching work with students seeking to maximize their career opportunities.
UDA will be hosting a Dream Maker Webinar with Nadia on April 25th 6pm EST for students and their families to learn how Nadia can help with securing their dream career.
UDA, with its ever evolving mission to change lives through education, is partnering with Menaul School, an international residential and day school that has served students since 1896. With over 300 days of sunshine in Albuquerque, the academy will offer students year-round training in one of the most beautiful regions of the U.S.
The program is differentiated from other programs of this type as it provides direct routes into higher education institutions that are partnered with UDA in the UK and USA.
Lindsey GIlbert, President and Head of Menaul stated, “Menaul School is thrilled by this partnership with UDA. We bring strong “World Smart” academics, a rich and safe residential experience for our students and great athletic facilities based on our 125 years of tradition preparing students to succeed in Mind, Body and Spirit. UDA brings professional level coaching and training for serious young soccer players who also seek to be scholars prepared for university study.”
Brian Haley, Executive Director at UDA stated, “We recognise that similar residential programs exist around the country for aspiring soccer players - what will make this program different is our pathways. UDA has already established several pathways for students aspiring to move directly from the new high school academy into higher education and soccer opportunities in the UK or the USA.”
Haley stated further, “Our goal is to make the academy accessible to all students from across the USA and around the world. Menaul is renowned for its commitment to quality and global education with its student centred focus throughout their learning and living environment. The program’s year-round playing will help students reach their optimal potential while maximizing their opportunities to move into world class higher education institutions at one of UDA’s partner universities.”
Laura Hille, International Admission Director stated,"Menaul School has a long history of welcoming students from around the world, and we are excited to continue this tradition into the 21st Century. We want all students to be able to understand the world around them and to find their place in the world at Menaul School. We provide a friendly environment that celebrates our individual students and our collective community of diverse cultures, customs, and perspectives."
The program is set to launch in Sept. 2022, however recruitment is open this summer. To kick off recruitment, UDA will be operating a residential summer camp program from June 20th-28th. There is an option for International and out-of-state students to take part in a tour of the American Southwest from June 25-28th as part of the UDA-Menaul Experience.
More information about the UDA at Menaul Academy can be found here. Please see the UDA at Menaul Summer Academy for specific information about the summer event, or contact Director of Recruitment, Coach Seamus Reilly at email@example.com.
Over 40 students attended the two recruitment events in Dallas Texas and Charlotte, NC respectively as the search for the UDA at UoChester, 2021, incoming class begins.
Director of Recruitment coach Reilly, stated,”The events were very well attended. We had students from over 12 different states from Florida, Georgia, Maryland, New York, Kentucky, South Carolina, Texas, Kansas, California, Colorado, North Carolina and Virginia. The standard was overall very good and we look forward to offering some of those who attended places in the academy next year.
Reilly concluded, "As is usual at our events, students and families were given a good insight into the UDA academy operation, the outstanding academic opportunities at the UoChester and the value UDA offers at multiple levels".
As UDA students begin their return to campus for academic studies and training, the USA based staff are in the midst of recruitment for the incoming class of 2021. With a large graduating class in 2021, there is opportunity for a larger incoming class next fall. The program was at close to capacity in 2019-20.
Director of Recruitment, coach Reilly, stated,“Our incoming target will be 25 students to maintain the three squads that we have in operation at Chester.”
Reilly continued,“We had to move our proposed Thanksgiving trip to the UK from November to Spring, but we will continue to monitor the situation. It has been a challenging time for all with restrictions on travel and gatherings. Despite this, UDA ran a successful and productive June ID event in Columbus Ohio with the state mandated protocols in place to ensure a safe, and fun event with over 30 prospects in attendance. It is with these processes that UDA will move into the fall with its planned recruitment timetable.”
"Moreover, UDA events will allow students to travel from all parts of the USA to ID camps in Dallas Nov. 6-9th, Charlotte Nov. 13-15th and in Phoenix Dec 4th-6th. We will be finalizing our spring recruitment dates and locations towards the end of November however, we believe we will have most of our 2021 class situated prior to the spring events.”, stated Reilly.
In conclusion, Reilly added,“We already have more than a dozen students committed to UDA at Chester next year - they either have visited the campus on tour or attended one of our national events. Some have even known the program for over several years and want to make an early commitment.”
More information about upcoming recruitment events can be found here.
Seamus Reilly, Director of Recruitment at University Degree Abroad-UK Soccer Academy, visited Chester Football Club in England in early August. Seamus spent the day with John McCarthy (team manager/coach) and Mark Maguire (chief executive of Chester City Football) working on the development of opportunities for academy students. They discussed training opportunities, coaching staff and showcase events. Director Reilly looked at the overall day to day operations of the club, visiting all facilities including the the locker rooms and football stadium
Coach Reilly stated. "The club is fantastic, it is the perfect fit for our academy students as it offers great facilities and opportunity to be connected to the professional game. It will add great value to the student experience as they peruse their undergraduate degree- this connection is in line with our mission and vision statements for students in our academy."
In the afternoon Recruitment Director Reilly met the CEO of the club, Mark Maguire, discussing the partnership of Chester City Football Club with UDA's soccer academy. The meeting was very positive and encouraging to both groups as they looked at the positives of player recruitment, showcases games and professional training opportunities through Chester's connections.
Reilly stated, "We will now formalize the agreement which will take place this coming fall. It will offer a great opportunity for students to be connected to the football industry across the platforms of playing, coaching and the business sector of the game."
Director Reilly added, " Mac the head coach at Chester (former English Premier player) is delighted to be the director of soccer coaching staff at UDA's Pro soccer academy for the American players - Mac sees this as bringing value to all parties and a win, win for the club and the students with the opportunities they bring."
Director Reilly added, " The opportunity to meet the coaching staff and the CEO was beneficial as we develop opportunities at multiple levels for the UDA soccer academy students within the football industry. We will continue to evolve these opportunities as the program unfolds.”
Reilly concluded, “Chester FC is a community based club, owed by the local fans and they will have a great interests in American Students being connected to the club. They are great fit for the unique academy model we are developing for our International students, specifically for the North American student-athlete."