The chance that we’re given here is one that’s very hard to get hold of.
More about George
George is a second year BSc (Hons) Real Estate student who combines his studies with his professional rugby commitments at Nottingham Rugby. George was part of the Worcester Warriors academy set-up for six years before coming to NTU.
How did the opportunity to study at NTU and play at Nottingham Rugby arise?
“I came to a scholarship trial at the University. I was successful in getting the scholarship and was then invited to go and train with Nottingham Rugby whilst I was still at school. I then got offered to do pre-season training at the club and at the end of that I was offered a two-year contract which runs until the end of the 2016/17 season.
“I knew the Real Estate course was one of the best in the country and I’d heard that from people who I already know in the sector. It was that combined with wanting to find an environment where I could play my rugby at a very high level at the same time. NTU gave me the chance to do that, and if you look up and down the country there aren’t many places where you can study and play simultaneously.
Tell us about how the set-up works between NTU and Nottingham Rugby.
“The Nottingham Rugby programme is a full-time duty that requires commitment six days a week, alongside full-time study. With our scholarship we have a high performance director who works at the University. If we struggle with work or anything, they assist us to make sure we get the best out of our study as well as our sport.
“This is mainly down to the link with Neil Fowkes as he’s part of the University and part of the club [as Director of Rugby at NTU and Forwards Coach at Nottingham Rugby]. Generally, the University are good in helping to support us in that. For example if I can’t do a certain lecture I can attend one at a different time, which means that we can train as much as we need to do.
Tell us about playing with other student/athletes at NTU and the club.
“The club and the University help each other. Nottingham Trent helps the rugby club because it’s bringing the top players from the University into their environment, which then helps the university side because the club is training very good players who are coming back to play for them.
“The fact that we get the training at that professional standard with Nottingham Rugby definitely helps us bring back new ideas to NTU. At the club we have a good strength and conditioning team and the medical team is obviously very good as well so it means that we’ve got the support there to achieve the best that we can.
What advice would you give to students considering the same route as you?
“For me it’s been very helpful. If you’re looking to play rugby at the highest level and go to a very respectable university and get a very good degree, then Nottingham Trent is definitely a place that you’ll want to really consider.
“There’s a few of us that go to the university and play at the club and I think that will only grow in the future, because it’s good for both parties. The chance that we’re given here is one that’s very hard to get hold of. I’d say definitely consider Nottingham Trent because the opportunities are there.”