UCFB offers a number of unique scholarship opportunities to students of all abilities across a number of disciplines, with scholarships available based on academic and sporting achievements, as well as social mobility among other categories.

Ahmed Zahran, a BA (Hons) Stadium and Events Management student at UCFB Wembley, was recently awarded the Paul Fletcher Scholarship. Here, he tells us how the award has helped him, and shares his highlights from UCFB so far.

How has the scholarship programme helped you so far in your BA (Hons) Stadium & Events Management programme?

My course has been very enjoyable so far, and I'm sure it will get even better when the pandemic is over. The Paul Fletcher MBE scholarship has helped me gain a broader perspective on how we can improve and manage stadiums in order to decrease environmental degradation and be more sustainable even when costs arise, a growing trend within sports stadiums.

What made you decide to want to come to UCFB and apply for the scholarship?

My decision to come to UCFB was not a hard choice. Before applying to any universities I attended an open day – this really helped me make up my mind. However, I was not going to apply for Stadium & Events Management at first, but International Football Business. But after attending the taster classes for both courses and getting in touch with the Students’ Union, I decided this was the course that would best help my future career prospects. UCFB have also built new accommodation very close to Wembley Stadium and its other facilities. The opportunity to study at Wembley really confirmed my decision to choose UCFB.

I decided to apply for the scholarship as it was geared towards the Stadium & Events Management course, and the scholarship’s focus on making stadiums more sustainable really aligned with my passion towards a more environmentally green future for sports stadiums.

 How has your time at UCFB been so far?

My time at UCFB has been very enjoyable, with online lessons that our lecturers have been working really hard to make work. They’ve also given up their own time beyond this for 1-2-1 questions and going through our essays which I cannot praise enough. All UCFB online content has been very helpful, giving guidance on many subjects such as help with your CV or providing mental health support. The Student Services have organised many great quizzes, tournaments and more fun stuff to do while we’re in lockdown.

What aspects of UCFB have you enjoyed the most? 

I have definitely enjoyed the topics that the course covers, such as the basics of marketing and the introduction of sport business, and considering these from a football perspective. I have also enjoyed the feedback that I have received from lecturers that has massively improved my work.

What does a Stadium & Events Management course involve and what have been the highlights so far?

The course includes the basics of football marketing and how these link to hosting events, and the introduction of sports business and sports finance, amongst many other topics. The highlight so far was definitely working in a group to present a marketing plan on our chosen merchandise, which included making our own merchandise and reminded us of the importance of teamwork.

What kind of extra-qualifications have you undertaken at UCFB so far? 

Currently I have not taken any extra qualifications due to coronavirus, but next term I will learn Spanish on an enrichment programme that UCFB offer which they have made easy to access by delivering the content online. I will also be taking a public speaking and time management course provided by UCFB as this is part of what the scholarship offers.

Do you have any advice for students looking to come to UCFB, in particular those thinking of applying for a scholarship?

Do as much as you can and be as proactive as you can and try volunteer out of school, and keep this up when you come to UCFB because the extra-curricular activities here will be far better than at your sixth form or college.  Also, before you make a decision go to an Open Day, even if it is a Virtual Open Day, it will really help you gain an insight to what UCFB offer. Ultimately this is what made me want to study here.