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Emmet Cleaver

Democracy Coordinator, Manchester Students’ Union


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What did you like about the course?

My interest in sport blossomed whilst I was studying Sport at sixth form. I was never really good at remembering Latin names for muscles or things to do with the heart. What I was really interested in was learning about sport as a cultural phenomenon – how countries integrate sports and PE in schools and how governments create policy to encourage participation. After A-level, I wanted to further my interest at University. It was actually very difficult to find a sports degree in England that wasn’t concerned with science and physiology so I was overjoyed to find a course that was completely relevant to my interests and beliefs about sport.

The course was constantly challenging my understanding and beliefs about the importance of sport and its impact on society. This was due to the lecturers who created an environment where we could comfortably and respectfully challenge one another. Some of my favourite topics were sport and religion, consumerism in sport and understanding community.

How did the course help you in your chosen profession?

Once I graduated I was elected as the Welfare and Community Officer at the Students’ Union. Part of this role involved getting students feeling connected to their community through volunteering. Whilst the role wasn’t linked to sport, I was able to apply what I learned on my degree to my job, by creating social research projects and running campaigns. I now work at Manchester Students’ Union as a Democracy Coordinator. This role is about engaging people in democratic processes and encouraging activism in students. It involves working with different student communities to understand their needs and how I can best support them in their life and academia. All of which I feel I could link to what I learned on my degree.