BU varsity student successes celebrated at the 2014 Sports Ball

BU varsity students’ achievements were celebrated at the annual Sports Ball last week.

300 athletes went along to celebrate the achievements of all the teams and individuals who have represented BU over the past year. This year over 50 students were recognised for their contribution to BU Varsity Sports, and were awarded their University Colours, Individual and Team awards by special guest, Sarah Hunter, England Women’s Rugby Captain.

BU Varsity Sports offer students the opportunity to compete in over 40 team sports as part of the British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) competition, which includes more than 144 universities in the UK. BU was ranked 34th out of 146 institutions in the 2012/13 league, and thanks to the efforts of teams such as men’s volleyball, women’s hockey and men’s football, BU is currently holding the 30th spot in the 2013/14 league.

Individual prizes were also awarded to several students and teams:

sports-ball-team-of-the-yearThe Men’s Volleyball team won the ‘Team of the Year’ award following a phenomenal season for both their first and second teams. Their successes include winning the Volleyball England Student Cup and the Beach Cup, as well as coming third in the National Cup final, and have put BU in 2nd place of the UK National Volleyball rankings.

sports-ball-jessie-dean‘Sportswoman of the Year’ went to Jessie Dean for her dedication, attitude and skill on the pitch that secured the Women’s Hockey Team their most successful season in nine years.


sports-ball-philip-smith‘Sportsman of the Year’ went to Philip Smith for his unwavering commitment and hard work which earned him a place representing Great Britain in both indoor and outdoor volleyball.



Other winners of the 2014 sports ball include:

  • Dedicated Athlete – Leigh Baker
  • Coach of the Year – Steve Cuss and Dan Neville
  • Most Improved team of the Year – Women’s Hockey
  • Team Performance of the Year – Women’s Hockey
  • Strength and Conditioning Team of the Year – Men’s Lacrosse


Find out more about BU Varsity Sports.

BU men’s football team celebrate promotion success


Bournemouth University’s men’s football team are celebrating this week, with the 1st and 3rd team clinching promotion to higher divisions.

The Men’s 1st team secured promotion with a 5-0 away victory against University of Winchester Men’s 1st team to claim the BUCS Western 2A League title.

The Men’s 3rd team finished the season with a top of the table clash against University of Bath and claimed a 2-1 away victory – with the winning goal scored in the last few moments of the game. They too, claimed their division title with the win and are promoted as a result.

From next season the Men’s 1st team will be playing in the BUCS Western 1A League, with the 3rd team playing in BUCS Western 2A League.

Marcus Dowdeswell studies Business Studies with Finance at Bournemouth University, and is Captain of the Men’s 1st Football team. He said, “The boys showed great commitment and character to win their respective leagues on the last game of the season. We have a strong squad, with strength throughout and I believe this is what allowed us to achieve what we did this season.”

Marcus continued, “There is a great spirit and will to succeed amongst the players and each member of the squad contributed to the success of BUFC. There are a number of final year students, including myself, within the squad and therefore the title deciding games were our last games for Bournemouth University FC, and this success concluded a great three years of university football for Bournemouth.”

Steve Cuss, Head of AFC Bournemouth’s Community Sports Trust, works with BU’s football teams as varsity football coach, and said, “Congratulations to all the players on the achievement of a double promotion.  We have enjoyed working with the players on a weekly basis, the effort and commitment shown by all has very evident and the two winning teams are reward for the hard work of the players throughout the season”.

Steve’s contribution to the football teams’ success was also highlighted, as the continuing link between Bournemouth University and AFC Bournemouth provides an opportunity for students to receive a professional level of coaching during their time at university.

BU and AFC Bournemouth kick off partnership


A new partnership between Bournemouth University and AFC Bournemouth will create exciting opportunities for students, graduates and the local community.

The four-year partnership between BU and The Cherries is designed to enhance students’ experiences through a variety of exclusive work experience opportunities, giving them a competitive edge when looking for full-time work.

This includes working alongside the AFC Bournemouth Community Sports Trust in delivering an annual season-long project for every year of the partnership, as well as supporting the club’s media and commercial team on match days.

Bournemouth University Vice-Chancellor John Vinney said he was delighted to see two of the town’s biggest institutions working together for the benefit of the students and the community.

“We are very excited about the partnership with AFC Bournemouth and the opportunities and experiences it will create for our students,” he said.

“It is also exciting that our two institutions will be partnering to make a difference in our local community, showing a continuing commitment to the area in which our staff and students live.”

The new partnership will also mean BU’s varsity football teams receive expert coaching from AFC Bournemouth’s Community Sports Trust.


At the launch of the partnership, the teams were treated to a training session with AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe at the Goldsands Stadium.

“I think it’s a great tie-up,” Eddie said.

“We would love to give people the experience of how a football club works and obviously, from the students’ perspective, that will be something that they will value greatly.

“We’ve already had a few interns getting full time jobs with us, so it’s hopefully a set up that works and hopefully both parties will benefit.”

Megan Cave, from the BU women’s varsity football team, took part in the training sessions at AFC Bournemouth.

“It’s been good to have this experience and see it all, and the coaching will help develop us as players and as a squad,” said the second year Sports Development and Coaching Sciences student.

“I’m interested in working somewhere like this in the future so it’s great to be able to get in here and make those professional links.”

A number of Bournemouth University graduates are already employed by AFC Bournemouth, including the club’s commercial director Rob Mitchell.

AFC Bournemouth chairman Jeff Mostyn said that he hoped the new partnership would also benefit the local community.

“This is the start of what we hope will be a really large and successful partnership, with two of the most esteemed organisations in the area joining forces to create centres of excellence,” he said.

“We like to think that the football club is the hub of the community and the contribution of the university will help this develop into an amazing relationship, bringing both local businesses and students in the area together.

“It is a great opportunity to develop the skills of young people both within the university and the football club.”