Introductions: Clara Pettitt

A question of Newcastle sport: Athletic Union Officer, Clara PettittA question of Newcastle sport: Athletic Union Officer, Clara Pettitt

Hi I’m Clara, the Athletic Union Officer for 2017/2018. My role for the year is to ensure that all students across Newcastle University fulfil their sporting potential, and have an enjoyable experience, getting as many people involved in sport as possible. I act as a point of contact for students interested in sport. I will be running campaigns throughout the year, reporting on fixtures and results, organising Stan Calvert and ensuring everyone has a fantastic sporting experience.

My university experience has been unique but incredible. One thing I will say about university is no matter what you expect, it will always be crazier, better and wilder than you ever could have imagined. As well as an unbelievable academic network with the best provisions to get a fantastic degree, Newcastle University offers a huge variety of extracurricular activities that will no doubt enhance your CV and widen your job prospects.

From my first year at university I engaged in many different types of activity. Freshers’ Week was a thoroughly enjoyable experience in which I started my new life in Newcastle. I lived in halls where I made a wide group of friends, enjoyed Newcastle’s nightlife, the full English breakfast and a cooked meal for me every weekday. I attended my lectures and, although the 9am starts after a Wednesday night social weren’t easy, the staff in the Maths school didn’t fail to engage me in making a successful start to first year. Socially and academically my university experience was going well.

After being overwhelmed by the many opportunities at Clubs and Societies Fair, I signed up to two sports clubs: Cross Country and Triathlon. I competed for both teams in their annual BUCS competitions making the first team, in both Duathlon and the XC Championships. Both of these experiences were invaluable and I couldn’t recommend them enough.

“After being overwhelmed by the many opportunities at Clubs and Societies Fair, I signed up to two sports clubs: Cross Country and Triathlon”

I have been part of my course society, MathSoc, where we had weekly socials and joined Coast-to-Coast society in which we cycled from Whitehaven to Tynemouth in 2 days (212km). I was a peer mentor for Fresher’s on my course and a student ambassador, showing prospective students around the university campus.

On top of everything I have been involved in there are a wide range of opportunities available for everyone. We have a Give it a go programme which allows you to try out sports for the first time, with activities such as Bubble Football and Ice Hockey, we have a Campus Leagues programme which involves inter university competitions as well as and Intermural League programme and finally we have the Athletic Union sports clubs which compete locally, regionally and nationally.

In February we host our annually varsity match against Northumbria university, this is a competition that gets all students involved whether you want to compete or just spectate.

My advice to you is that you get stuck in from the start and get involved in as many opportunities as you can, as you won’t get an opportunity like it again! If you want to join a sports club, we have the Clubs and Socieites Fair on Sunday 24th September, Monday 25th September and Tuesday 26th September where you can sign up to teams and get the information you need.

We have a huge variety of clubs on offer, from Ultimate Frisbee to Water Polo! There are so many opportunities but if there isn’t a club that you fancy then you can always set up your own club, as long as you have 15 members that want to take part in your club. I look forward to working closely with you all throughout the year.

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