Firm foundations for sports careers

Sporting students at Norfolk's Easton College will be combining business with pleasure this autumn when they sign up for new courses that could take them to the top of their chosen professions.

Sporting students at Norfolk's Easton College will be combining business with pleasure this autumn when they sign up for new courses that could take them to the top of their chosen professions.

In September, the college is for the first time offering seven foundation degree programmes which carry a degree-level qualification equal to the first two years of a three-year degree course with the option to top up to an honours degree by studying the equivalent of a final year at the UEA.

Among the first applicants are 19-year-old equine student Jess Jones, who is curr-ently doing a National Diploma in Horse Management, and footballers Andrew Fulcher, 18, and Kelvin Gitau, 17, who are both doing the National Diploma in Sport.

Jess, a former pupil at Benjamin Britten High School in Lowestoft, was delighted that the new foundation course in equine management was available this year.


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She said: “I've been at Easton for two years and it's been absolutely brilliant and I don't want to leave. I can't afford to go on to university and notch up a massive debt so I'm going to come back and do the foundation course.

“I'm not sure what I'm going to do at the moment so the course will give me the breathing space I need to find out what I'm going to specialise in. It could be equine science, phsysiotherapy, nutrition or I could become a yard manager.

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“Whatever I decide on I'll need the degree to get the sort of high-level job that I want.”

Andrew and Kelvin both have their eyes set on professional football careers and see the foundation courses as an ideal way of achieving their ambitions whilst having the safety net of top coaching qualifications.

Andrew, formerly at Sprowston High School, said: “I've always wanted to play football and being here has been perfect for my needs. The foundation course will help me push to get into a club and I could come out of it with a degree.”

Kelvin, who has already played for Norfolk under 18s and Norwich City Reserves, took a similar view.

He said: “I really want to be a professional footballer but I want to have something to fall back on in case that doesn't work out. We've done FA football coaching level one but a foundation degree and higher levels of coaching qualifications would really help.”

The new foundation courses on offer at Easton are: Ecology and Conservation Management, Equine Management, Animal Science and Welfare, Landscape Design Management, Agricul-tural Management, Sports Coaching and 3D Design and Enterprise - all designed with local business needs in mind.

For further information contact Craig Smith at Easton College on 01603 731200.

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