A University of Stirling PhD student has received a prestigious national award in recognition of her volunteering work to help grow participation in women’s football.
Chelsea Raymond was named by the Scottish Football Association (SFA) as the nation’s ‘Best Volunteer in Girls/Women’s Football’ during a glittering ceremony at Hampden Park. The national accolade comes after Chelsea was named the best volunteer in the Central Area by the SFA earlier this year.
Chelsea is completing her PhD in Social Work and combines her studies with a passion for increasing participation in women’s football. Her research area relates to girls’ experiences of recreation and the potential of sport for positive change in society.
The SFA have recognised Chelsea’s work in organising the University’s Women’s Development football team, which is one of five women’s teams at the University. Chelsea also helps to coach the SFA’s Soccer Centre at the University, which provides girls aged five to 12 years old with the opportunity to play football.
Chelsea Raymond said: “Football is a passion of mine so it has been fantastic to not only have the opportunity to play and coach during my time at Stirling but also to be able to incorporate the power of sport into my research area.
“To have my volunteering work recognised by the Scottish Football Association is a proud moment. I’m really pleased to be playing my part in getting more girls and women involved in playing football.”
Originally from New York, Chelsea originally came to Stirling in 2016 as a Fulbright Scholar to complete an MSc in Psychology of Sport. The US-UK Fulbright Commission is regarded as one of the most prestigious international exchange programmes in the world, and aims to foster intercultural understanding between the USA and UK. The University of Stirling is proud to partner with the Fulbright Commission to offer funding for the first year of postgraduate studies in health, wellbeing, or sports science.
The University of Stirling has been crowned the UK’s Sports University of the Year 2020 in recognition of its world-class facilities and excellence across sports performance, research and education.
It is the first time a Scottish university has received the distinguished accolade and it builds on Stirling’s longstanding designation as Scotland’s University for Sporting Excellence.
The landmark announcement – bestowed by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide – recognises the University’s key role in producing a host of star athletes over the years – from Duncan Scott, Jane Ross and Colin Fleming, to Catriona Matthew, Marc Austin and Gordon Reid.