Wolves Foundation students hit double top in the EFL CEFA college leagues this season, with both sides from the Football & Education College Academy finishing as champions of their respective divisions.
Students on the BTEC course run in conjunction with the City of Wolverhampton College take part in the Community & Education Football Alliance leagues, which are run for EFL Club Community organisations for Premier League and EFL clubs across the country.
And this year, both teams enjoyed excellent seasons in their respective leagues, culminating in being crowned as champions of the Central 2 and Central 3 divisions.
The award ceremonies were split across the three EFL play-off finals staged at Wembley, with the Foundation teams able to enjoy some hospitality at the Championship final – in which former Wolves player and coach Rob Edwards led Luton to victory – whilst picking up the trophy.
The title success also marked a positive end to the first year working with the Foundation for football and education coach and former Wolves striker Lee Mills, who saw another of his former teams, Coventry City, edged out at Wembley.
“I’ve really enjoyed coming back to Wolves to work for the Foundation and coaching a really good group of lads who are keen to learn and improve,” says Mills, who coaches the ‘A’ team.
“It’s been a great challenge across the season with some very good teams in the league and we’re delighted to have come out on top.
“Getting the opportunity to go and pick up the trophy whilst enjoying some Wembley hospitality at the play-off final was a fitting end to a very successful season.”
A weekly fixture schedule against the likes of Aston Villa, West Bromwich Albion and Nottingham Forest is just part of the overall learning package involved in the BTEC programme from the Foundation’s Football & Education College Academy.
The course offers students the chance to learn about the sports industry by studying areas such as anatomy and physiology, coaching, sports science and performance.
Brad Moore, senior education officer with the Foundation who oversees the Football & Education College Academy, believes the success is a strong indication of the overall standard of the programme.
“It’s been a really positive season for the players on the pitch, a reflection of their ability and willingness to learn along with the quality of the programme delivered with the City of Wolverhampton College,” says Moore.
“Winning both leagues is an excellent achievement and the lads all thoroughly deserved to have a day out at Wembley and enjoy such a dramatic play-off final.
“The football programme forms just part of the overall package of learning delivered within the academy, and the BTEC course is perfect for people ultimately looking to study further or work within sport.
“Apart from the qualification which can lead to further opportunities within the industry, there are also many different enrichment opportunities for students so they get to spend time at Molineux and the Compton training ground, and to meet first team players.
“We are really pleased with the link-up with the City of Wolverhampton College and the opportunities that we can offer students to gain their first foothold in aiming to work in sport.”
Want to know more about the Football & Education Academy and BTEC programme? Find out more on the Wolves Foundation website or email email@example.com to get involved.