Having graduated from Stirling with a BSc Sport and Exercise Science in 2014, Thomas Di Virgilio opted to embark upon a research degree at the University. For the Italian, one of the deciding factors was the opportunity for interdisciplinary work – allowing him to combine sport and exercise research with psychology.
“The University of Stirling is a great place to conduct research as the establishment supports and encourages cross-collaboration between research groups and research topics,” explained the 26-year-old. “I was able to shift my research interests to encompass the brain, the pathways from the brain to the muscles, and the muscles themselves.”
During the course of his PhD, Thomas was involved in Stirling’s world-leading research into the impact of heading footballs – a study that hit the headlines when former England star Alan Shearer visited campus to cover the work as part of a BBC documentary. Thomas believes such opportunities will help him to raise his profile within his field.
Thomas describes his time at Stirling as “fun, interesting and rewarding” and acknowledges the “expertise, friendliness and approachability of the teaching staff” when reflecting on his successful eight years at the University.
He will now further extend his stay at Stirling after being appointed as Lecturer within the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport.
“I hope to be involved in lots of research and teaching in the years to come,” he added.