My name is Farrell Treacy. I grew up in Warwickshire and I’m a Short Track Speed Skater. I got into the less well known sport of Short Track Speed Skating when a friend at school introduced me to the sport and I was immediately hooked. While there’s been a few things happen along the way, I achieved a significant milestone when I competed at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games in 2018.
While I’ve always been actively training and competing, I was very wary of the next step after sport. When weighing up my options, I always thought that education was going to be the next step for me. I explored the various options available to athletes and it was when I attended a LAPS event that I met Dr Heather Dichter who told me all about an intriguing course at De Montfort University; the Business Management and Sport MSc.
I got an application together and was fortunate enough to be accepted onto the course. I initially enrolled in October 2020 and it so happened that I was also recovering from a hip operation at the time. My lack of capacity to train meant my usual time commitments for training and competition were reduced considerably and allowed me to adjust to the course workload.
I think every athlete can agree that one of the worst things is being stuck on the sidelines; whether that’s injury or selection you just want to compete! Giving myself an external outlet was incredibly beneficial for keeping me sane but also keeping motivation high on my rehab programme.
After I fully completed my rehab process and found myself coming back into full training, the university and the staff were incredibly accommodating with my situation of being a student/athlete. They helped me find the transition back into training full-time whilst studying at the same time seem less difficult than it could have been. Knowing of my intense schedule, I was able to arrange further support with academics, deadlines and recording lectures so I could still view them at a time that fit in with my training and competition commitments.
I also found the Sports Scholar scheme to be incredibly helpful not just for my academics. The support from the whole DMU scholar team was fantastic and really helped me with my training and preparation for the upcoming Olympic qualification season. I think overall I would really advise anyone to go for it. Being an athlete can be incredibly tiring and for me having an alternative focus and outlet was a real game changer.
This whole experience has left me incredibly confident in my own ability to find a new career after sport, and I believe that the knowledge that the tools and support from DMU will further aid me on my future transition into ‘normal’ life. The course gives access to key people of influence in the industry and has opened up the avenues that are potentially available to me.
Personally, I would love in the next year to be work with a professional sports team outside of my sport, to really learn and develop but also to explore the sports industry further.
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