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Q&A with Coach Academy member Becks Archibald

Becks Archibald

BSc (Hons) Sports Coaching and Physical Education student Becks Archibald talks about her experiences as part of the Coach Academy.

Why did you apply to be part of the Coach Academy?

To get more experience in teaching and coaching. I wanted to be able to develop and improve my coaching and teaching skills and learn from experienced coaches and teachers.

What did you do as part of the Coach Academy?

I was part of the Coach Academy for the three years of my degree. I spent two years at the Stephen Perse Foundation as a Teaching Assistant, supporting the staff in their lessons as well as having small groups of students to teach as well.

In my final year I took on the challenge of coaching and leading sessions in the ARU women’s football and futsal teams. I led training sessions and helped support the teams on match day.

What support did you receive?

As part of the Coach Academy you receive support from mentors. For me this was staff at the Stephen Perse Foundation who guided me through teaching strategies and ideas.

I also had the support of the paid coaches in the football and futsal team who allowed me to bounce ideas off them and learn different coaching styles.

Did you gain any qualifications?

As part of the Academy, the University pays for one coaching qualification for you each year in order to build up your coaching portfolio. I was lucky to achieve my Level 1 in coaching football, my Level 1 in coaching futsal and an introduction to hockey coaching qualification.

How do you think it has helped your development?

I gained in confidence every year I was part of the Coach Academy and my leadership skills also developed. I was able to lead the women’s football team to a third place finish in the first season and also led the futsal team to be undefeated champions.

It also opened other doors for my development within sport and allowed me to join the Cambridgeshire FA on their council representing youth football and also take on the role of Chair of the Cambridgeshire FA Youth Council.

Would you recommend it to others?

I would 100% recommend it to anyone looking to develop themselves into a coach or teacher. It allows you to get hands on experience and grow your coaching portfolio at the same time. I got so much out of my time in the Academy and loved every minute.