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Castleford Tigers College Case Study: Charlie Harris

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Read about Charlie’s story below and you can sign up to register your interest for enrolling onto the Tigers College courses in 2021/22 and to receive a link to our Virtual Opening Evening here: HERE

Now a promising player for the Tigers Academy side, Charlie was more than a little apprehensive after his first game over ten years ago, but even since then the game made a sizeable impact on him.

“I’m from Featherstone, so I started out at Fev Lions when I was about five, played my first game at Whetherby, I didn’t even have any rugby socks, I just had my trainer socks on, and massive shorts! After that I was a bit scared as everyone was two years older than me, but I loved it and came back and played at the Lions for about 9 years until 14 when I moved to Cas Panthers.”

This year will mark his fourth in the Tigers’ Youth system, and after leaving school the Tigers College was an attractive option for Charlie, and despite the lure of other options for his further education, he’s glad he settled at the Tigers.

“It was there at Cas Panthers, where I first got signed onto the Tigers’ Scholarship side, and then after leaving school I was looking for an option to go on and somewhere I could keep playing my rugby.”

“Actually I got in [at college] elsewhere, but I wanted to be in and around the club more. Here I can get my learning done as well as playing rugby and getting a bit more coaching input.”

“I know a few of the lads training with the First Team right now from the college, Adam Rusling goes to the college as well, we used to sit next to each other all the time! I got the chance to have a few training sessions around the First Team myself last year through the college and academy and really enjoyed it so can’t wait for my chance when it comes!”

The Covid-19 Pandemic has certainly made things difficult for students up and down the country, but like many others, Tigers College learners have had to adapt and are receiving key support from tutors and coaches alike.

“Distance learning has been weird but I don’t mind it too much, I do miss being in that environment in a classroom with my mates but at the moment it’s not that bad. We’re getting access to everything we need and Jordan, our tutor, is helping us out a lot, helping me with things for uni too.”

Of course, it’s every young rugby players’ dream to break through and have an enjoyable career playing top tier rugby , but the 17-year old is wise enough to know the importance of having a plan for after rugby, which is why he’s been using his college studies to successfully apply to study Sports Business Management at Leeds Beckett University.

“I’m looking at uni to possibly study Sports Business Management. If rugby doesn’t work out, I’m keen to have that as my back-up plan. I have received a conditional offer from Leeds Beckett university meaning that I need to achieve the grades they have set in order to secure my place. I’ve discussed this with my tutor and we have both agreed that the grades are achievable, at this point its a matter of concentrating on my college work and getting my head down to give my self the best chance of getting my place at university.

“The College has done a great job of prepping me for university: It’s a BTEC course so whatever you put into it, you’ll get out of it in terms of your grades. There’s no exams, it’s all coursework so it can be a little time consuming but the more time and effort you put into it, the better grade you’re going to get!”

Danny Evans, Academy Coach and Education and Pathways Officer is someone who has seen Charlie really develop and mature during his time at Castleford: “Overall now I have known Charlie for a round 4 years. In that time I have seen him as a scholarship player progress through to being a Academy player and also attend the Castleford Tigers College programme. In that time Charlie as really matured as a player and an individual. I wish Charlie all the success moving forward in his university application and his playing time at Castleford.”

To register your own interest in the Castleford Tigers College programme for 2021/22 and take your exciting next steps in further education, fill out our expression of interest form: HERE

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