Lauren Brooks, 17 from Stroud has been playing netball since she was introduced to the game at Primary School in Cirencester and now has her sights set on representing her country at the highest level. Hartpury College, Gloucestershire was the perfect choice for combining her A level studies with her intense training regime as a member of the Junior Netball Academy and England Excel U17 squad member which totals 17 hours of training each week.
Hartpury College was chosen by Netball South West to pilot the AASE scheme in Netball in 2007 with established links to Lauren’s club Hucclecote Netball Club, it has proved the ideal environment for developing sports stars.
Lauren credits the AASE programme with improving her time management and planning skills to juggle her education and strict training regime.
She said: “I have learned so much on the AASE programme, it has really taught us life skills and helped me plan for the future and back up options as I can’t rely on netball as a career unfortunately. The sports and fitness industry is growing all the time and the course has given us a real insight into what career opportunities are out there.
“At the moment, my ‘A’ levels are the priority, but I hope to move on to study Sports Science at Bath University and push for a place in the England team for the U21 World Youth Championships, next year. It’s tough but really worthwhile and I would encourage anyone given the opportunity to join the AASE scheme.”
The AASE scheme, which was created by SkillsActive and funded by the Skills Funding Agency has been designed to meet the needs of young, talented netball players (aged 16-18), who have the potential to achieve excellence in netball.
The AASE programme takes two years to complete and aims to develop players through technical skills, tactical knowledge, physical conditioning and psychological techniques. Away from the practical elements, Apprentices also cover units on communication, managing an athlete’s lifestyle and career, and health and safety.