Paddling to Success

Published on 4 July 2020

Sports can play a huge part in the overall university experience, creating friendships outside the classroom and developing skills that will help our graduates excel in the working world

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One alumnus who feels his involvement in sport has helped him beyond his time at the University of Dundee is Andy Smart - Politics Class of 2012, former captain of the Canoe Club and Sports Union President 2012-2013.

As an officer in the Royal Navy, many of the skills acquired as part of the Sports Union have impacted Andy’s day-to-day working life. His naval career began in May 2014 and his first experience of being at sea was on-board HMS DARING operating in the English Channel. Since then, his duties have taken him across the world, with involvement in a number of large multi-national exercises. Andy used his leadership skills on his recently completed tour as Commanding Officer on HMS ARCHER, which was berthed in Montrose on a Royal Navy recruitment tour around Scotland. He is currently training to be a Navigating Officer of an offshore patrol vessel.

His involvement in the Canoe Club holds many fond memories, however Andy remembers the challenges his team faced.

“I remember having older boats than some competing teams, so quite often we were the underdogs. Being Sports Union President as well, I was aware of the financial challenges the sports teams faced and that’s why I proposed the creation of the Sports Union Alumni Fund.

“The most rewarding part of my time at the University of Dundee was my involvement with the Canoe Club. Over a period of four years I developed my skills and grew as leader, both on the river and as part of the club. This ultimately led to my election as Sport Union President in 2012. The skills I developed through sport still benefit me today as a Lieutenant in the Royal Navy. I’m proud to be a Sport Union Alumni Fund Champion”

Andy Smart

Andy believes that alumni can give something back to the teams that have given them so much. If you were a sports club member, you will know the ongoing challenges that face our sports clubs in providing for the wide range of member abilities and expectations. We want our 45 sports clubs to continue to excel in attracting and developing new members, giving them the same great memories and experiences that you treasure from your own time playing sport at this University.

Your gift to the Sports Union Alumni Fund will help purchase high quality equipment to improve the performance of our sports clubs and the experience of their members. The Sports Union Alumni Fund is about making our sports clubs the best they can be. But as with all sports, it’s a team effort, so thank you for playing your part. Here’s to even more success in the years to come.

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