Leeds Trinity University student Fran Bridgwater graduates today with a degree in Physical Education and is now preparing for the next stage in her career as she trains to be a primary teacher at a school in Bradford.
22-year-old Fran, from Trowbridge in Wiltshire, was first drawn to Leeds Trinity after learning about the professional work placements embedded in every undergraduate degree. She knew she wanted to become a teacher and saw the benefits of completing a placement to secure her career in teaching.
Since joining Leeds Trinity in September 2018, Fran has excelled on her course and has achieved a First-Class degree in Physical Education. Alongside her studies, she has taken on leadership roles as Chairperson of the Netball Club and the Christian Union.
In July 2019, Fran chose to complete her First Year placement abroad, participating in the Fiji volunteering programme with Think Pacific, an international volunteering company in partnership with the Fijan government. She spent four weeks in the country teaching at local schools in underprivileged communities, helping to transform the lives and opportunities for children in the area.
Reflecting on her time at the University, Fran said: “Leeds Trinity University quickly became one of my top choices for university, primarily because of the placements. I knew I wanted to go into teaching and placement experience would be vital to secure a place on an initial teacher training programme after my degree. I also wanted to be a part of a small, tight-knit student community where I knew everyone, and this is something the University provided.”
She added: “One of the highlights was my First Year placement with Think Pacific in Fiji, and having the opportunity to experience everyday life in the village, building relationships with children at the school and my host family. I gained confidence in myself and my ability to teach, and my time in Fiji also led me to deciding I would rather teach in primary schools than secondary schools.”
Sarah Todd, Sports Development Manager and Institutional Lead on the Think Pacific programme, said: “Fran has championed sport at Leeds Trinity University during her three years, playing a significant role in the Netball Club as both Captain and Chairperson, recruiting members, helping to deliver training and encouraging members to stay active through our This Girl Can programme.”
She added: “During her First Year placement in Fiji with our partners Think Pacific, Fran led by example when representing the University and received excellent feedback from the organisation about her role as a volunteer. It has been a pleasure to work with Fran and I have no doubt she will go on to do great things.”
Fran is currently preparing to start training as a primary teacher at a school in Bradford. She will be completing her training through an initial teacher training programme.
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