Now there is even more reason for talented young athletes to choose to study at SRC Bede Sixth Form.
The College in Billingham has teamed up with Durham Women Football Club to enable up and coming players the chance to shine, both in their education and on the pitch.
Forming a Girls’ Football Academy alongside SRC Bede, the initiative will give aspiring footballers aged 16 to 19 the chance to combine football with studying A level or vocational qualifications.
The young players will get the chance to compete against some of the best young players in the country as they represent Durham Women FC in both the National Football Youth League and North East Colleges’ League.
SRC Bede’s Campus Principal Ben Robinson said: “This is a great opportunity for young female players in the Tees Valley area to enter a programme with recognised pathways to the professional game whilst continuing their education in a dual-career ethos.”
Academy players may even get to represent Durham Women FC as part of one of their squads which will compete in the FA Women’s National League or FA Women’s Championship in 2019/20.
Durham Women FC general manager Lee Sanders said: “It’s a big part of our development as a club that we are able to offer players from all over the North East the opportunity of a dual-career pathway, which is essentially studying while playing football.
Running a similar academy with a college in Durham, Lee said: “We’re delighted to be offering this to players in Teesside, the Tees Valley and North Yorkshire areas.
“We’re really looking forward to seeing what the partnership will deliver for the players.”
With the Girls’ Football Academy kicking off in September, potential students are invited to come along to SRC Bede’s open evenings starting this month. Here they can find out more about the Academy and chat to a representative from the club.
The open events will take place at the college on Marsh House Avenue, Billingham, on Thursday January 17 or Thursday March 14, from 5.30pm-7.30pm.
The new partnership with Durham Women FC comes just weeks after SRC Bede was awarded Dual Accredited College status by the Talented Athletes Scholarship Scheme (TASS).
TASS is a Sport England-backed programme that supports talented young athletes to pursue their education alongside their sporting aspirations, without having to choose between the two.
By working in partnership with education institutions, the TASS Dual Career Accreditation Scheme enables young athletes to successfully manage a dual career – balancing the demands or education with training and competition.