Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

College Gets a Kick out of FA Accolade

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

College Gets a Kick out of FA Accolade

Article excerpt

BUDDING footballers are celebrating their college scoring national recognition from the FA for making significant strides in football development.

Gateshead College has been awarded the prestigious Focus College status by the FA and British Colleges Sport for encouraging and enabling young people to get involved in football through playing, coaching and volunteering.

The status is the top level which can be awarded to a further education college for its commitment to football development provision. Only 10 colleges are selected each academic year to be a part of the programme.

Gateshead is one of only two colleges in the country which have been named football Centres of Excellence by the FA.

Lewis Pendleton, head of sport at the college, said: "This is an incredible achievement and demonstrates we are committed to developing football and increasing participation across all levels.

"We provide opportunities for all of our students to get involved in football, not just those studying sport qualifications, and understand the benefits being active and playing team sports can bring to young people."

The college has also joined the FA's Team 19 initiative which encourages students aged 16 to 19 on any course to become involved in football by organising their own college matches.

Through the project, students compete nationally against other colleges through a 'virtual' leader board system.

Gateshead College's Academy for Sport at the International Stadium is dedicated to sport education and supports students focused on training towards a career in sport.

Its facilities include thirdgeneration pitches and an English Institute of Sport Olympic-standard gym. It has 11 specialist sport academies, including a Men's Football Development Centre and Women's Football Academy, which support talented students by providing them with nine hours of professional coaching as well as performance and conditioning sessions. …

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