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Tashi – BSc (Hons) Applied Sport and Health Science

Alumni Tashi who studied at the University Centre has since had her dissertation published in an online student journal, as well as starting a career she is passionate about with the NHS.

“The fact that it’s an accessible University degree for people who live in Cornwall is amazing, and you should just go for it – you learn so much from the experience of going through a university degree, it shapes you as a person.”

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Hometown: Penryn

Course: BSc (Hons) Applied Sport and Health Science

Career: Critical Care Support Worker for the NHS


My Story:

University Centre alumni Tashi, from Penryn, was born in the UK, but spent her school years in both Europe and South Africa. Tashi returned to education as an adult upon moving back to the UK and found her future after choosing to study locally in Cornwall.

After studying an Access course to ensure she had the correct qualifications, Tashi enrolled onto the BSc (Hons) Applied Sport and Health Science degree at the University Centre Truro & Penwith.

Tashi explains why she chose the University Centre: “it’s the most accessible place as I wanted to continue living in Cornwall. Not having to travel to Plymouth or further had a big appeal.

“In terms of sport and healthcare degrees, there isn’t a lot in Cornwall. I’ve always loved anything to do with sport, physiology, and exercise science; the fact that I could study it locally was really appealing.”

Tashi also enjoyed the broadness of subjects covered within the degree at the University Centre and found that this helped her in securing employment in a field she did not originally have in mind to enter while she was studying.

Since graduating in 2022, Tashi has secured a job within the NHS, working as a Critical Care Support Worker, alongside physiotherapists, occupational therapists and speech and language therapists, allowing her to put things she learned during her degree into practice whilst also learning new skills.

“My degree was quite sports rehab focused, and now I get to apply the things I’ve learned in a health setting. Working with Speech and Language Therapists was completely new to me, but it does all relate back to my degree and there’s that foundation of physiology and anatomy and a general understanding that really helps.”

“I wanted to get a foot in the door with the NHS and this role popped up – I landed on my feet because it’s a great role and I get a lot of experience with therapies I didn’t have prior knowledge about.”

As Tashi’s degree took place during the COVID pandemic, she struggled to find work placements, however, took it upon herself to organise work experience herself as she knew she wanted a career within the NHS:

“Another reason why I wanted a job with the NHS was for that practical experience – it’s quite different from what you expect it to be. I needed to get hands on experience.

“I did organise some work experience myself with a lady I met through a Careers Convention at the University Centre; she is a Dietician and organised some work experience days at Treliske Hospital within the dietetics service.”

Tashi describes one of the main highlights of her course as the enthusiasm one of her lecturers, Jeff, had for the subject, even through online lectures during the pandemic: “One of my lecturers, Jeff, was amazing and  passionate about what he was delivering. He had positive energy while teaching a complex subject and did an amazing job of getting us involved even through remote learning – I feel like we had a really good understanding of it by the end.”

She also praises the individual support offered across the board due to the smaller class sizes, and the careers support through the dedicated University Centre careers advisor, Louise: “I’ve been in touch with Louise so much, she’s amazing and helped me a lot throughout the degree; I’ve also been emailing her recently about my next steps.”

One of Tashi’s most memorable achievements from her time at the University Centre was getting her dissertation published in an online student journal titled The Sport and Exercise Scientist.

Tashi’s dissertation, titled ‘The Effect of the Menstrual Cycle on Female Physiological Performance in Sports’, focused on the hormone fluctuations throughout the menstrual cycle, and the impacts of it on sport and female physiological performance.

Tashi broke her dissertation down into four main areas, encompassing the many ways that people play sports, strength, power, neuromuscular function, and endurance.

Tashi’s dissertation was graded highly, and a section of it focused on neuromuscular function was later published in the summer 2023 edition of the journal.

The nature of Tashi’s study meant there were limitations on the research or experimentations Tashi could undertake: “I did a systematic review of the literature already out there – it was quite a new way of researching for me, so I was learning on the go, which was challenging but also really interesting.

“As I really enjoyed the research process, I thought it could be another foot in the door to another potential career opportunity and I could get more into the research side of sports science.

“It took a good few months, I had to send a lot of drafts back and forth and I got help from staff at the University Centre with where to start.”

Tashi encourages future students interested in a degree to take the plunge: “The fact that it’s an accessible University degree for people who live in Cornwall is amazing and you should just go for it – you learn so much from the experience of going through a university degree, it shapes you as a person.”

Tashi now hopes to complete her Masters in Physiotherapy at the University of Plymouth, although she is also considering completing a Masters in Dietetics at Coventry.

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