Australian School of Business preparing Sydney Swans players for career after football

Friday, 28 September 2012  Features

Two Sydney Swans players who will be in this weekend's grand final are also preparing for their life after football by studying at the Australian School of Business (ASB).

Swans defender Ted Richards recently graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce. He has played for the Sydney Swans since 2005 and at the same time completed his studies. He says he found the degree very valuable in preparing him for his post-football career. He said "There were great synergies between much of what I learnt in the classroom and on the field, such as teamwork and change management."

However Ted Richards says combining a degree and playing for the Swans was tough. "Time management was important, especially around assessment time. I had to train with the Swans, and prepare for each game, while at the same time work hard to make sure I wasn't neglecting my studies. I've really learnt to balance my time."

Team mate Nick Smith, who is also defender, is studying for a Ba​chelor of Economics.

Neil Morris, Vice-President of University Services, which includes UNSW Sports and Recreation, wished the players luck at the weekend. 'We are delighted with the relationship that we have built up with the Sydney Swans and other professional sports teams to make UNSW a destination of choice for their athletes. We are keen to ensure that skills on the pitch are supported by options within the university that enable athletes to perform to the best of their ability when studying or playing.'

Professor Wai Fong Chua, UNSW Pro Vice Chancellor Students, has thanked the Australian School of Business staff for supporting the Swans players in their studies, whilst also pursuing their football careers. She said "all of the players were members of the Elite Athlete Support Program too which allowed them flexible study options."

The UNSW Elite Athletes and Performers Program provides enrolment flexibility, cross-institutional study options and leave of absence for travel commitments for eligible current students to enable them to successfully integrate academic life with elite level sport.