Exercise & Health Studies graduate Áine Byrne from Tinahely, Co Wicklow talks about her experience of the course and how she found her place in Waterford
How did you find the BA (Hons) in Exercise & Health Studies?
It was absolutely amazing, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do when I started college. I knew that I wanted to do something with health and sport, so I was drawn to the health and exercise course because all of the modules were so different; you were dipping your toe into so many different modules, like nutrition, activity for intellectual disability and strenght and conditioning just to name a few. I am graduating today as an Exercise and Health Specialist with REPS Ireland Qualification. I was also lucky enough to be with people who loved the course as much as I did; I had so much fun and learned a lot along the way, it has really helped me choose what I want to do after I graduate.
What are you hoping to go on and do?
I want to work with people who have intellectual and physical disabilities, in a recreational setting, so playing games and training and competing in competitions. I completed my work placement with Brothers of Charity in Ferrybank, it is a day centre for people who have intellectual disabilities and I was in the recreation department and just feel in love with the work. Currently I am working as a Gym Instructor to build my experience, I am really enjoying it at the moment. I love working with people and helping them reach their own personal goals has been amazing.
So what brought you down to Waterford?
Well I knew Dublin wasn’t for me because the colleges are too big up there and there’s so many people, I’m from the country in Wicklow and I’m more used to smaller class sizes. I was looking at different colleges and thought Carlow would be to close because I wanted to get away and Limerick and Tralee were too far. Then when I was looking at Waterford and I happened to be talking to friend of mine who was in the fourth year of this course at the time and he highly recommended the course to me so I done a lot more research into the course, the college and the city and I knew then, that Waterford was the place for me!
Tell us whatever you want that we haven't asked about.
The Vikings sports and societies were a big part of my life down here. I was involved with the GAA team and we won the Division 3 All Ireland league along with the Lynch Cup and Giles Cup.
I lived in student apartments in first year and then I lived with girls in my course and who I played football with for the next three years.
Interviewed by Ian Bradley at Conferring 2018