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Teesside University enters global collaboration with David Beckham-owned Inter Miami CF

Teesside University’s burgeoning reputation in elite sport has been further strengthened through a prestigious collaboration with Major League Soccer (MLS) team Inter Miami CF in the United States of America.

The collaboration will provide unique opportunities for student placements and internships, staff development and joint research projects to support the Inter Miami Performance Department. It will also help enhance Teesside University’s brand globally in one of the world’s fastest growing leagues.

Dr Garrison Draper is High Performance Director at Inter Miami CF. He recently completed a PhD at Teesside University and visited for a guest lecture towards the end of last year. Since then, Teesside University has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Inter Miami CF Performance Department which outlines a commitment to work together in a number of areas.

It will see exciting opportunities for students to support the work of Inter Miami CF Performance Department through placements, internships, live projects and volunteering activities. Staff from both organisations will provide guest lectures, and there will be shared work around civic and learning activities. In addition, the University and soccer team will work together on joint research activities within elite soccer and the MLS.

Dr Matthew Wright, Senior Lecturer in Biomechanics and Strength and Conditioning, and Professor Paul Chesterton – both based within the University’s School of Health & Life Sciences – are already working with Inter Miami CF on multiple applied research projects.

With the MLS covering such a vast geographical area, each with different climates and conditions, the duo are working with Inter Miami CF to examine the various environmental challenges and how different temperatures and locations can impact performance and injury.

Experts from Teesside University have already published their work from this collaboration, and presented data at multiple US-based conferences, and it is hoped that further collaboration will take place with additional teams within the league.

Teesside University is a leading institution for elite sport and strength and conditioning and has supported numerous athletes through its environmental chamber, which can replicate conditions in all climates. It also offers a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in sport-related courses – with its BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science ranked 3rd in the UK in the Guardian Good University Guide 2024.

Last year, the University launched its Football Academy which helps support talented young footballers to achieve their ambitions. And England superstar Beth Mead is also a graduate of Teesside – now providing the Beth Mead Scholarship for aspiring female footballers.

Professor Tim Thompson, Dean of Teesside University’s School of Health & Life Sciences, said: “As a University, we do a great deal of work in this space and are renowned for our expertise in sport, exercise and strength and conditioning.

“We are delighted to be working so closely with Inter Miami CF and it will provide some truly amazing opportunities for our students and staff. To be collaborating with a club co-owned by such an iconic former player, and captained by arguably the greatest player of all time, is incredible and cements our position as a truly global institution. Hopefully this will be the first of many successful partnerships with clubs in the MLS which will help to further improve the student and learning experience at Teesside University.”

By Mark Adair – Correspondent, Bdaily

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