Mykee Jenkins, Head of Academy Goalkeeping at Newport County AFC, graduated from the BSc Football Coaching, Development and Administration in 2017.
"My current role sees me design, develop and sustain programmes across all three academy phases of development, while managing two assistant goalkeeping coaches and working with the U18 goalkeepers daily and match days.
Having worked in this role for more than six years, I had already tasted what the industry had to offer and knew that a degree was a crucial part of the CV when applying for jobs at top academies.
I decided to come to the University of South Wales as they offered a unique distance-learning coaching course that was very specific to my role. What’s more, I could continue to work, and study in my own time.
It was not without its challenges! Anybody who works in football will understand the amount of time that is put in daily to master your craft.
Trying to develop goalkeepers and my own knowledge as a young coach at the same time as studying for a degree was tough, and I often found myself studying late into the night.
But I have a clear ambition - to become a first team goalkeeping coach at the highest level, and knowing that a degree is essential for this role made it easier to knuckle down and do the work.
The residential weeks were exceptionally well organised and worthwhile. The distance learning lectures were easy to follow and could be taken in my own time.
The teaching was from highly experienced coaches, particularly Craig Gill, who provided a lot of detail and useful information that could easily be transferred into industry.
My favourite project was the Applied Professional Project in the final year. This helped me to really examine what I did in my day job, and look at how I could develop it - and myself - further.
I completed a 500-hour placement (at my own club) which allowed me to put into practice everything I had learned from the coaching degree for the benefit of the players and other staff in the academy.
I would 100% recommend the course, especially to coaches in the academy system or community who want to earn a degree while continuing to work.
Hopefully, I have shown that it is possible and it is definitely worthwhile."