WGU and Crusaders join forces to convert Education into Careers

Cru1Rugby league and academia have joined forces to provide students and the community with a platform to convert education into careers.

Wrexham Glyndwr University and North Wales Crusaders have enjoyed a close partnership for five years, with the club playing its home matches at the institution’s Racecourse stadium since its inception in 2011.

With a new Vice-Chancellor in place at the University, Professor Maria Hinfelaar, and Ryan Gould taking up the reins as general manager of the Crusaders, they plan to further strengthen links with a series of student incentives and offers, as well as collaborating on sport science, work experience and training methods.

Under-18s and first team players from the Championship One side have already worked with Sports Coaching lecturers on health, wellbeing and strength and conditioning, as well as using facilities at Plas Coch to help develop youth players’ fitness levels.

Ryan is delighted to see the two north east Wales giants come together off the pitch to help boost their success on it.

“I’ve only been in this role for a matter of months and knew one of my first tasks would be to look at even more ways we could work together with Wrexham Glyndwr, for the benefit of both parties,” said the 21-year-old.

“I’ve been involved with Crusaders since I was 16 and, after finishing my journalism degree at the end of May, took on this full-time role at the club.

“Not only do I hope to work more closely with the University on the PR and media side – as we can help to promote each other in the community and beyond – but I also want to offer work placements to the students.”

Ryan added: “If we can help them to gain valuable experience we will be more than happy to do so. I think there are so many ways that ourselves and the University can work together and I look forward to our strong partnership getting even stronger in the future.

“We will also be coming up with new ways to attract youngsters – notably students – to the games so we can increase our attendances next season.”

The development of the Crusaders U18s squad was part of a wider growth of the game in the region, with the likes of Flintshire Falcons and Dee Valley Dragons participating at amateur level.

Professor Hinfelaar is leading on further collaboration in north east Wales and says closer ties with the Crusaders will enhance the town’s sporting profile and encourage more people to support both organisations.

“I would like to congratulate Ryan on his new role and look forward to supporting North Wales Crusaders in several areas, particularly from an academic perspective,” she said.

“At Wrexham Glyndwr the student is at the heart of everything we do, so whether their experience is enhanced socially by attending games or educationally by working alongside our sports and business lecturers then we are delighted to be a part of that.”

For more information on Wrexham Glyndwr University, visit www.glyndwr.ac.uk

Visit North Wales Crusaders’ website here: www.northwalescrusaders.co.uk

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