Exercise and Sport Science moves to Callaghan: What you need to know

Confusion and concern have plagued Exercise and Sports Science students this past week, after it was revealed that the program will move to Callaghan campus. Peter Hyslop investigates the change, sharing details exclusively obtained by Yak Media.

The Exercise and Sport Science program is set to move to Callaghan in what has been a fiasco for current students, after the option to select Ourimbah campus for the degree conspicuously vanished from the University’s website.

It’s has left students uncertain about whether the move will be happening next year, in the following years, or right now. And, only after questioning (and a few twisted arms) the University has admitted this might be a problem.

Exercise and Sports Science Program Plan

Exercise and Sports Science degree overview on the University website displaying one location option: Newcastle

ABC Newcastle has reported on angry parents who aren’t happy with their children taking the train to Callaghan each day, citing safety concerns with female students travelling home alone in the evening.

But the University has confirmed with Yak Media that the change won’t necessarily apply for current students, and those currently enrolled will still be able to complete the program at Ourimbah over the next five years. 

Red faces at ABC Newcastle.

Liam Harris, recent graduate of the Exercise and Sports Science program at the University of Newcastle.

Liam Harris is a recent graduate of the program. He told Yak Media the degree is mainly theoretical, and moving to Callaghan might actually be beneficial for students.

“There’s a bit of a misconception around Exercise and Sport Science,” he said.

“There are some subjects that look at the designing and delivery of exercise programs for sporting teams…a lot of it is focused on the anatomy and biomechanics and how the body moves.

“When you do graduate, the jobs that come out are more analytical. They’re not hands on jobs and you need other certificates, like your Cert III and Cert IV to get more hands-on jobs,” he said.

When asked whether he knew of students who lived on the Central Coast and were concerned about making the trek, Harris was fairly blunt.

“All other Central Coast students have to travel up here anyway for the degrees they want to do,” he said.

“Most of my classmates that I knew and spoke to were from Newcastle and I think it would benefit a lot of people if it was moved to Callaghan.

“There’s a handful of people that I knew that lived on the Central Coast, but most people were from Newcastle. If it is moved, it would benefit a lot of people,” he told Yak.

Here at Yak, we’re not sure how many students would agree with Harris. 

In a statement shared exclusively with Yak Media, Deputy Vice-Chancellor Mark Hoffman said the University wants “…students to have access to the very best facilities” and that “…the best way to do this is by utilising the world-class sporting infrastructure at our Callaghan campus, including an Olympic swimming pool.”

In response to questions on whether the University plans to move out of the Ourimbah campus, Professor Hoffman said, “We are absolutely committed to the Central Coast and we know that people want locally focused options for university study. That’s why we continue to work with our government and industry partners on the establishment of the new $58m Mann St Gosford campus, which will complement what we have at Ourimbah and our campus at Gosford Hospital.”

Make of that what you will.

In short, if you’re a current student of the program, chill. If you’re a prospective student living on the Central Coast, with that degree being the only option you’ll ever have, and with absolutely no transport options to Callaghan whatsoever, panic. 

Feature Image by Ielyzaveta Ivanova 

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