Students receive visit from rugby star Abi Chamberlain



England women’s rugby star Abi Chamberlain visited the college to talk about her career and life as an elite athlete.

Current England Women’s Rugby Sevens captain, Abi is part of the squad that qualified Team Great Britain for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, where Rugby Sevens will make its Olympic début. Abi only took up rugby at the age of 21 while at Loughborough University, and has since made a real name for herself in both the 15-a-side version of the game and on the sevens circuit, winning over 25 caps for England over the past four years.

She visited our Boundary Road campus in her capacity as one of Sport England’s Sporting Champions – a team of current and retired elite athletes.

The event is funded by Sport England, who run the Active Colleges programme.


Abi was excited about attending the session in order to help the young people participating raise their own aspirations and said:

“I’m really looking forward to visiting Farnborough College of Technology as part of Sport England’s Active Colleges programme. The aim of Active Colleges is to increase the number of students in colleges taking part in sport regularly so it is something I’m very passionate about”.

“As a Sport England Sporting Champion, I hope I can inspire all the young people in attendance to sustain their sports participation and raise their own aspirations of what they can achieve.”

A packed theatre of students listened to Abi’s story and got to see her England caps, shirts and lanyards from international stadiums. After her talk Abi led a basic rugby skills session with a group of sport students; working on passing, ball control and communication.

Student Becca Carr, 17 from Tongham, said:

“The visit was really good and the activity was so fun – Abi was cool too.

Her story was inspiring because it felt so real. Abi did a similar course to me at college and went to university, which has made me want to do a degree even more so I can become a personal trainer.”


College Sport Maker Alicia Currie said:

“The students all enjoyed themselves and said it was a great experience to be coached by someone who has captained their nation.

“This visit is one of the many ways that we enrich our students’ experience at college, along with activities ranging from badminton to taekwondo.

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