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Undergraduate study

Our students

Tom Bell

BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science

I have broadened my knowledge of sport and exercise science, gained confidence to connect with people and to always be professional, punctual and enthusiastic.

Tom Bell

Why university?

When I was born I was diagnosed with epilepsy and my mam was told continuously that I would have severe learning difficulties. I struggled in school and was bullied due to my epilepsy, but I decided to prove everyone wrong and make my family proud. I flourished at college in my BTEC level 3 diploma in sports performance and excellence and realised I wanted to pursue a career in sport.

Why sport and exercise science at Teesside?

From a young age, I’ve always had a passion for sport, either competing competitively or playing with my friends at the local park. When I was researching universities and attending open days, the staff at Teesside made me feel extremely welcome and, it was eventually a no brainier to come to Teesside.

Best thing about your course?

I enjoy coaching and performance aspects, designing and delivering a coaching session, analysing a sports performer’s game and how they can improve. I have also developed life skills such as taking blood, measuring blood pressure and heart rate, and building connections in the sport sector.

What do you think about the campus and the services?

The Students’ Union staff have always been very approachable and supportive. The Library has so much life and it’s such a positive environment to study in.

What do you think about Middlesbrough?

Everyone is so friendly and down to earth. The University campus is right near Middlesbrough town centre and there are so many shops and services that make it a great university experience.

Are you a member of any clubs or societies?

I am captain of the Teesside University men’s football second team. My role involves collecting the club kit and equipment for games, as well as organising travel for away games. I’m also an FA referee.

Any extra curricula activity?

I’m a casual sports coach at the University and also a multi-skills sports coach for Tees Valley Sport in a primary school in Stockton-on-Tees.

Have you worked on any projects with businesses?

With Tees Valley Sport, I took part in a summer project at Albert Park for local children - Middlesbrough MELA Summer Fun. It ran for six weeks offering football, cricket, golf, tennis, fun relays and volleyball. The councillor for Nunthorpe, Mieka Smiles and BBC Tees came to visit to find out more it. The project was enjoyable, and extremely rewarding. I met people from different backgrounds and ethnicities.

What skills and experience have you gained at Teesside?

I have broadened my knowledge of sport and exercise science, gained confidence to connect with people and to always be professional, punctual and enthusiastic.

Ambitions for the future?

After graduating, I’m planning to take a year out to work and enjoy playing sport competitively in the summer and then go to Australia to play cricket for the winter season and return to England and pursue a teaching career.

Would you recommend Teesside and your course?

Absolutely, Teesside University has supported me with my disabilities and put a superb student support plan in place for me. In the sports sector it so important to make as many connections as possible and the course has definitely helped me achieve this.

Any advice to students thinking of coming to study here?

Join a club or a society. It 100% improved my university experience and made it more enjoyable. You develop your social skills, meet so many new people and you can build excellent relationships where you make friends for life. Playing for a club is great as you are representing Teesside University in a competitive environment, which is also good for your CV.

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