UCFB students heard from BT Sport pundit Jermaine Jenas and went head-to-head in a special Questions of Sport quiz session as part of the UCFB Future Leaders in Football and Sport Conference at St George’s Park on Thursday.

Hosted by the BBC’s Mark Clemmit, the day-long event at English football’s HQ also saw students hear from England legend Sue Smith, and former football league managers Peter Reid and Martin Allen, about their careers and invaluable advice for aspiring sports industry professionals.

Students also had the chance to tour the world class facilities used by all age groups of the England national team set-up, including the Sir Bobby Charlton pitch and indoor arena.

The day started with an introduction from Clemmit, before he introduced UCFB director Paul Fletcher to the stage. Fletcher has a unique insight into the football and sports industry, having been player and chief executive of clubs in the past including Burnley and Bolton Wanderers, and he was able to offer the third year and Masters students in attendance vital information about their future career paths.

Then it was the turn of former Sunderland boss Peter Reid, and ex-Leicester City manager Martin Allen, to take to the stage and captain two teams of students in a Questions of Sport game-show session. UCFB Etihad Campus students Emma Anderson and Fionn Bell joined Reid on stage, but it was Allen’s team, which included UCFB Wembley students Paula Wood and Adam Rowe, who were successful on the day.

Following the lunch break, it was time for students to hear from former England and Doncaster Belles forward Sue Smith. Smith, who collected 93 caps for the Lionesses, spoke at length about her time in the game, covering her activities on the field as well as in the TV studio as a pundit, and about the progress the women’s game is now making throughout the world.

The day ended with a talk from former Tottenham Hotspur and England midfielder Jenas. Now a regular and popular pundit on BBC and BT Sport, Jenas gave a fascinating insight into his transition from pitch to pundit, and the numerous opportunities that are available in the sports industry. Following his talk, Jenas spoke with many of the students to offer further advice as part of a networking session.

Summing up the day, host Clemmit said: “What a great day we’ve had. I loved doing the presentation skills workshop, and I loved doing Questions of Sport with Peter Reid and Martin Allen. On top of that, Sue Smith was sensational and Jermaine Jenas was every bit as good. It’s been a brilliant day.”

Commenting on the event and how it can help to inspire the next generation of leaders in the sports industry, Jenas said: “We’ve been on the inside of everything that they want to be a part of, and also right at the top, whether it’s international or club level. You want to be a part of it; it’s a great opportunity for them and I’m honoured and privileged to be asked to come along and pass on my experiences and my knowledge not only of my footballing career but also where I am today, in the media and how I’ve got to that place. I think it’s great that you have a group of people here for this conference to get through to the students and give them what they need to move forward in their life and in the business of sport.”