Liverpool FC Academy visit campus

LFC academy sitting on chairs

The LFC academy with Dr Amal Abu-Bakare

Liverpool FC Academy players visited the University of Liverpool’s Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences to experience university life.

The U18 Academy squad took part in a variety of taster sessions across the Faculty as well as a campus tour and lectures alongside University of Liverpool students to give them an insight into university as an option for transitioning away from football.

Dr Gemma Bird, Head of Politics welcomed the Academy players to the University. Dr Dan Parnell, Director of the University’s Football Industries MBA, discussed the careers available to the players off the pitch after going to university, while Dr Nick Martin (Politics)and Dr Daniela Tepe-Belfrage (Sociology) provided 30 minute taster sessions on identity and sexuality. The players also had the opportunity to sit in on a second-year lecture on the Politics of Race by Dr Amal Abu-Bakare.

The visit was organised through the Politics Department and the University’s Widening Participation and Outreach team which works to ensure all young people have the opportunity to go to university, whatever their background.

17-year-old Cody, a centre midfielder at the LFC Academy who attended the visit said: “We really enjoyed the lecture and getting an insight of what a student does day to day.

“I didn’t realise how free students were to plan their own time outside of lessons compared to what we’re used to as footballers! It was really useful to see university as something we can do.”

Academy players Luca (L) and Cody (R) in the University’s Leggate theatre

Ted Smith, the Liverpool FC Academy U18 Education Officer said: “As part of our education programme, the club is responsible for the personal development of the boys, which includes career development. We’re working with boys who are within touching distance of careers as professional footballers. But as well as preparing them for a career in football we have a responsibility to give them a view of what other careers might look like when they transition away from the game.

“Today’s visit to the University of Liverpool really opened up their eyes of what university is like. It was really important for the boys to hear at a lecture from Dan in the Management School how many people across football, in all different facets of the game, are university educated. It was great for the boys to have their eyes opened to how university can help them develop their careers off the pitch.”

Dr Amal Abu-Bakare, Widening Participation Officer for the Department of Politics, who delivered a taster lecture to the students said: “The players looked like they had a lot of fun, even in my lecture where they were talking about the politics of race they were all really engaged in the discussions.

“It’s really important that we as a University give back to the wider community in Liverpool. It was great to be able to give the boys an idea of what university is like so that they know they could have a space here and know that university could be an option for them in the future.

“I’d like to thank Marie and Lynsey from the Widening Participation team who made sure the visit ran smoothly and that the team got a really good tour of campus – even organising a last minute stop off at a historical lecture theatre!”