Taking control of studying and sport

Cameron Golden plays hockey for Uhlenhorster HC in Hamburg, and Scotland. He is studying for an MSc in Sport Business, Management and Policy virtually from Manchester Metropolitan University. You can follow Cam on Twitter and Instagram.

I played hockey in Scotland until I was 19, then my club in Scotland played in the equivalent of the Champions League in Holland, and we played quite well. I spoke to some clubs in Holland which had watched me play and I had some offers to go to Holland as a professional player. But I was at university doing my undergraduate degree so I was torn between these two options. I decided to go to Holland which was a big decision – I was at university, but Holland was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up. Then Covid happened, so that actually worked well because all the university content then went online.

I came back to the UK during Covid. In August 2020 I was speaking to some other clubs, then I came to Hamburg and started playing for UHC Hamburg. My international career had seen me go through all the youth ranks with Scotland and GB including GB Under-21s. I was in the GB Elite Development Programme (EDP), the team under the full senior national team. I was one of the UK Sport funded athletes, for a couple of years. I’ve got 39 caps for Scotland and I’ve won player of the tournament at a few different tournaments.

In the run up to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games I was on the long-list for GB. I knew myself there was no chance – I lived in Germany and part of the criteria was you have to live in the UK!

I did my undergraduate degree in Scotland, and that was in sport and exercise science. It’s a degree in a very specific field, so I thought it was a good idea to broaden my studying horizons so I found the Sport Business, Management and Policy MSc course from ManMet, and I thought, that sounds like a good fit.

I would almost have a four-pronged approach if I wanted to get a job in the field of sport, I would have such a broad skill set. I’m really focussed on also taking my hockey career as far as it can go, and I wanted to go to the best place for my hockey development, and the ability to study anywhere in the world from Man Met online just fit in perfectly.

The MSc gives me such a broad context of sport, and I wanted to get a better degree under my belt than just an undergraduate.

The course is part-time and it works well with hockey. It’s remote and you’re encouraged to go to live seminars, but that’s the only fixed commitment. Sometimes, if we have two games at the weekend, and they’re both in Munich which is eight hours from Hamburg – that’s not ideal because it would be hard to meet study commitments on those days. It’s a lot of travelling. If I know this week is a busy one then I know I’ll have to smash it out on a Monday. It’s a good balance, it’s very flexible the way the course it set up. It’s definitely an advantage.

I was fortunate enough to have been chosen for the 50% scholarship on fees for one LAPS member. I feel honoured to have received such a prestigious award which helps to simultaneously further both my hockey and my professional career.