Playing to our sporting strengths
Playing sport and being active is a big part of student life at Ulster University. Our world-class facilities and coaching expertise provide opportunities to inspire at every level, from the casual gym goer to the Olympic hopeful. Ulster’s legacy of sporting achievement across a wide range of disciplines gives the University much to be proud of and the economic, health and social impact of our sports prowess extends beyond the playing field.
For the last few years the University’s Sports Union has implemented a policy of entering a single cross-campus team in senior intervarsity competitions. This means that students can be considered for selection regardless of the campus on which they study, thus offering equality of opportunity for students from all campuses to represent Ulster University at the highest level. This approach is consistent with our rebranding as Ulster University.
Dr Nigel Dobson, Head of Sports Services, explained: “The integration of campus teams into one unified University team maximises opportunities for sporting success by enabling the best students to prepare and compete together with coordinated performance support services and appropriate resources. Moreover, it allows our sports to compete on an equitable basis with all other universities.
“The implementation of the policy has already begun to reap significant dividends, with teams comprising students from across Ulster’s campuses having captured Irish Intervarsity Championship and individual titles this season, in a wide range of sports including athletics, badminton, golf, men’s and women’s hockey, indoor cricket, judo, pool, swimming and tennis. Men’s basketball finished as runners-up and the University Cue Club won the British University Championship, making Ulster the first University to win the title on three occasions.
“Key to the policy of a single cross-campus Ulster team, at senior Intervarsity level, is the availability of appropriate regular league, cup or other competitive opportunities for all student members of our 70 sports clubs, commensurate with their level of interest and ability on both University and campus teams.”
Campus-based teams have achieved notable successes in a range of cup and league competitions and titles and trophies have been won by Magee Gaelic Football Team (Corn na Mac Léinn Trophy), Jordanstown Ladies Soccer Team (Women’s Soccer Colleges Association of Ireland First Division), Coleraine Ladies Rugby Club, (Student Sport Ireland Division 2B league) and Coleraine Ladies Gaelic Football Team (All Ireland League Champions) and the Ulster University Elks won the Senior Irish Hockey Cup and will play in Europe next season.