Kings of Sport was a day for local, white working class boys to come to King’s, meet students, and learn what the university has to offer them. The day included presentations on university life, tours of King's campuses, 2 hours of football and touch rugby, and a Q&A session with current King's students. My role was to run the touch rugby session and then take part in the Q&A.
On a personal level, I think it’s really important that university is made more open to more people, particularly white working-class boys who experience several barriers when trying to enter university. Sport is a very useful way of breaking down barriers and getting to know people, and this was crucial on the day so that the boys could find out what day-to-day life is like as a student that plays a sport. Not all of them were looking to apply to King's, but it was still important for them to find out more about university life.
My favourite moment was during the rugby session - lots of the boys were scared of playing because they hadn't played before, so they started to complain of 'injuries' that they'd picked up during the football earlier in the day. A few even decided not to play rugby. But by the end, everybody was involved and the mysterious injuries had disappeared!
It was an extremely rewarding day. Running a touch rugby session for boys who hadn't played very much rugby before was certainly a challenge, but we had a lot of fun along the way. I'd say it was my leadership and communication skills that were tested, and I certainly feel I've improved in these areas as a result.
It was also a great experience for the other guys involved, and as a club, we are always looking for new ways to give back to the community. It’d be an ideal annual event for the rugby club because lots of our guys are looking to get involved in coaching, so this is a great place to start.
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