Young rugby players have the chance to follow in the stud marks of Grand Slam winners Jack Nowell and Luke Cowan-Dickie thanks to an exciting new partnership unveiled today between Exeter Chiefs and Exeter College.
Starting in September 2016, aspiring rugby players will get the chance to nurture not only their rugby talent, but also first-class education and training after the Aviva Premiership club joins forces with the outstanding further education college.
The Exeter Chiefs Rugby Academy at Exeter College will provide education and rugby training required to support learners to reach the highest level in the sport. The programme caters for players from 16-18 and 18-20 years.
Applications are now being accepted for prospective learners who are interested in joining the Academy in September 2016.
With similar college bases in Truro and Ivybridge, the Chiefs have already seen the fruits of years of hard work, creating a wealth of proven, home-grown talent such as England stars Nowell, Cowan-Dickie and Henry Slade, as well as the likes of Dave Ewers, Sam Hill, Ben Moon, Max Bodilly and Stuart Townsend to name but a few.
In welcoming the new partnership, former England international Robin Cowling, who is Academy Manager for the Chiefs, said: "We are very excited about teaming up with Exeter College moving forward.
"Speaking with them it was clear early on that they shared the same vision as ourselves in wanting to produce the very best rugby players that we can."
Cowling cites the success of Saturday’s Grand Slam win for England, who involved two current Chiefs in their tournament squad, as the perfect example of the system working.
"For any aspiring player living in the Westcountry, you only have to look at the example set by both Jack and Luke at the weekend," said Cowling. "It was only a few years ago that they were starting out in our academy programme at college, yet here they are winning the Six Nations and representing their country.
"As a club we are delighted to see success stories of this type and moving forward, we believe it will only get better with partnerships such as that we have created with Exeter College."
The announcement of the new partnership comes as part of a mutual agreement whereby the Exeter Chiefs Rugby Academy is moving from Bicton College to Exeter College.
Both Exeter College and Bicton College are working together on the move of the academy to ensure a smooth transition to safeguard academic and rugby tutoring for existing students.
Exeter College Principal Designate John Laramy said: "I am delighted that the College will be working in partnership with Exeter Chiefs to provide aspiring rugby players with education and training, which is specifically designed to facilitate promising careers in top flight, professional sport.
"The addition of the Exeter Chiefs Rugby Academy to the College’s current provision is an exciting collaboration with one of the country’s best rugby teams and another step forward in our commitment to promoting the benefits of sport to our community, the city and the local economy."
So, if you are an aspiring rugby talent of the future apply now to join the Exeter Chiefs Rugby Academy and follow in the stud marks of your rugby heroes.
Exeter College is holding a Trial Event on Wednesday May 25th 2016 at Exeter Chiefs, Sandy Park from 6.30pm for new applicants to the Academy for 2016 entry and their parents and guardians.
To attend the Trial and to apply for a place at the Academy, prospective learners must apply for a place at Exeter College and also contact Chris Wall, Sports Academy Manager, in advance.
Please contact us for more details about the Academy and how to apply for 2016 entry:
Chris Wall, Sports Academy Manager
Phone: 01392 400309