Cardiff Metropolitan University’s School of Sport and Health Sciences and Disability Sport Wales have launched the University as a Centre of Excellence for Disability Sport Wales and as a training facility that will provide even greater levels of activity for disabled people.
The announcement formalises a three-year collaboration between Cardiff Met and Disability Sport Wales; which have a history of working closely together, with many disability sports people Paralympians among the University’s alumni.
Nathan Stephens, Geraint Richards, Busra Un and Harrison Walsh sat on a panel alongside Dr Joanna Hendy, Cardiff Met’s Director of Learning Enhancement; Professor Leigh Robinson, a Professor of Sport Management; Pro-Vice Chancellor (Cyncoed Campus) and Dean of the School of Sport and Health Sciences as well as Fiona Reid, CEO of Disability Sport Wales.
The panel discussed a range of current issues including how people can improve their health and wellbeing through more physical activity.
Alumnus Nathan Stephens is an Honorary Fellow of the University; is a Paralympian (Winter and Summer), Commonwealth Games 2018 athlete (Para Powerlifting) and a DSW Performance Pathway Officer and British Athletics Coach.
Geraint is a Wheelchair Tennis Coach at Cardiff Met and coached the GB squad for Wheelchair Tennis at Rio Paralympics and is Founder GJR Performance Solutions.
International Post Grad student Busra Un plays Paralympic tennis for Turkey and Harrison Walsh throws F44 Discus.
Fiona Reid said: “Disability Sport Wales and Cardiff Metropolitan University have always had a very positive and close relationship, and this new official partnership really now allows us to celebrate the great collaborative work we already do; but also to build on opportunities for athletes, participants, students and staff within both organisations to continue to grow.
"By working together we can ensure that athletes and participants get access to state-of-the art facilities, equipment and support, and that students and academic staff get practice-focused experience within disability sport settings. It is a really exciting collaboration and we are delighted to be working formally in partnership with such an innovative and values-driven University.”
Dr Huw Wiltshire, Associate Dean: Enterprise & Innovation at Cardiff School of Sport and Health Sciences said: “The University promotes its values through key and trusted partnerships and Disability Sport Wales share one of our missions to promote inclusion and diversity. Our most recent Fellow of the University is Nathan Stephens who is a talented coach and former athlete and a name synonymous with Paralympic sport not only in Wales, but globally.
“The Paralympic motto is ‘Spirit in Motion’ which reflects the Centre’s objective of supporting participation and performance sports people through flexible research support, innovation projects and inclusive student work-based learning.
"Through the Centre, the University will help drive DSW’s aims to remove barriers to participating, and help more people to become more active, more of the time.
“A Fellowship is the highest accolade the University and Nathan Stephens has received this. As a University we promote inclusivity and diversity management wherever we can.”
To read this story in Welsh, click here.