Edge Hill University recently held a dedicated conference with a firm focus on developing
the graduate employability skills of students studying on BA (Hons) Sports Studies and BA (Hons) Sports Development degrees.

“The annual Student Academic Conference is the ideal way for students on both these courses to share their work and experiences,” explains event organiser and Senior Lecturer, Jimmy O’Gorman.

Jimmy continues, “This year’s conference had the theme of ‘using your sports degree to gain employment’ so we had a number of keynote speakers delivering sessions, enabling students to relate their study activities to the key employment skills required within the industry. The event provided all year groups with invaluable advice and guidance as they progress to becoming job ready graduates.”

The conference included first year students undertaking an assessed poster presentation as part of their work-based Leadership and Volunteering module, with second and third year students providing constructive advice. Meanwhile, second years were asked to compile a report on the day, which was designed to enable
them to gain further understanding about how the grading boundary in higher education works and how their own individual work is assessed. Third year students undertook presentations which critiqued a contemporary sports issue of their choice and based around current research in that area.

“Exercises such as these provide first and second years with an insight into the standards and expectations the University has for its students in a supportive and friendly atmosphere, while third years get to experience a conference-style activity, designed to provide them with the skills needed to deliver short, sharp and concise information to an engaged audience,” adds Jimmy.

Dr O’Gorman concludes, “One key presentation during the day came from Clare Barrell from UK Sport and it was extremely valuable for our students to hear about her real-life experiences, including how she secured her position as International Development Officer. The way in which Clare delivered her presentation about her student life and the realities of seeking employment in the industry resonated highly with everyone.”
Feedback from the students involved has been extremely positive and the conference is now an integral part of the department’s events calendar.

To find out more about studying Sport and Physical Activity at Edge Hill, visit ehu.ac.uk/studysport