Kaeshelle Cooke – Track and Field

Kae has been awarded a grant for equipment for her athletics training.

Athletics has always been a significant part of my life and I desperately wish to continue it at university. I will be studying French and Politics at the University of Bath, I chose Bath as it great for my academic studies and they also have amazing facilities with great coaches where I can continue to do my main event hurdles whilst studying. Unfortunately, last year I was unable to effectively study and train at the same time. I had to travel across London (from North Finchley to Mile End/Newham Leisure Centre) on public transport to get to training, meaning I was tired all the time and I could not focus very well. To make matters worse I had a freak accident with the hurdles and found myself in crutches, injured and unable to finish the season. I could focus on studying for my a-levels and I received great results, an A* in Politics, an A in French and a B in English Literature.

I am now over my injury and I am desperate to get back on track this winter season. I find that doing athletics is a great stress reliever, running is one thing that I can always count on to make me happy. However, yet again I am in another awkward situation as my maintenance grant only gives me £33 p/w to live on after my student accommodation is taken away. This is not enough to buy the new equipment that I will need. I was selected to take the AASE (Achieving Academic and Sporting Excellence) programme funded by British Athletics. I have learned so much about my sport, including nutrition which I now know is indispensable to performance. Though, healthier food is generally more expensive, I have learned some tricks from the course on how to have a good nutritional regime. I expect to see both physical and mental health benefits from continuing my pursuit in hurdles.

In 2012, at 16 I was 3rd in the country for 80m Hurdles at the end of the year. I was the Southern champion and a bronze medalist in the AAAs (national championships). I know that I am talented as my coaches John Herbert, Lloyd Cowan and Tony Jarrett have told me. I plan to really work on myself as an athlete this year and define who I am. I will work my way back up the British rankings and show people that I will be capable of representing in Great Britain in the foreseeable future.

I have been working throughout the summer at festivals. This has raised some money but the majority of it has gone towards sustaining life at university such as buying pots, pans, and kitchen utensils etc.

I know that my mother will try her best to give me some money to support me but considering all the costs of books and other university costs, I cannot expect her to provide everything for me when they do not earn enough to do so.

I am not currently receiving any money in terms of university scholarships, bursaries or grants. So, I am looking for a part-time job whilst at university but have been unsuccessful at this time.