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Event details

We are delighted to invite our alumni, former staff, current staff, students and industry professionals to Solent for an evening to celebrate 30 years of outdoor programmes at the University.

When the courses started in the late 1980s they covered watersports and leisure management. Since then the programmes have evolved and diversified to respond to this exciting, dynamic and fast-paced industry.

Solent's well-established BA (Hons) Adventure and Outdoor Management degree (with 100% National Student Survey satisfaction) now covers careers in adventure tourism, extreme sports and outdoor learning, and health and wellbeing. Our most recent statistics show that over 85% of our graduates secured professional management positions within six months of graduation.

Programme of events

4.30-5pm
Optional tour of the Solent campus

5.30-6.15pm
Reception, refreshments and networking

6.15-6.30pm
Welcome and celebration of Solent's outdoor programmes

6.30-7.10pm
Alumni showcase: Gil McClure (NCS Trust) and Sophie Knight (Police Officer, Nottinghamshire Police)*

7.10-7.30pm
Industry guest speaker: Justin Everley, Commercial Director, Adventure Parc Snowdonia

7.30-7.50pm
Academic guest speaker: Dr Gill Pomfret, Sheffield Hallam University

7.50-8.15pm
Q&A, panel discussion with industry experts, and closing remarks

*Subject to availability on the day

Please note, the programme is subject to change

Speaker bios

Gil McClure running over hot coalsGil McClure, Extension Action Coordinator, NCS Trust
Gil graduated in 2015 with a first in BA Hons Adventure and Extreme Sports Management and from there utilised links established through his course to secure a full-time role as graduate engagement officer for the Hampshire charity, Youth Options NCS (National Citizenship Service). Gil has a passion for working with young people, fuelled by a year out during his degree, where he worked in Canada with underprivileged young people, and then through several youth support and team leader roles back in the UK through the NCS. For three years, Gil has worked for the National Citizen Service Trust Head Office as a project co-ordinator and manager responsible for planning and delivering training to young leaders (NCS graduates) around the country. Outside of work, Gil continues to inspire young people in voluntary roles including coach, club chairman, and Parkrun run director and ambassador.

Sophie Knight at an outdoor eventSophie Knight, Police Officer, Nottinghamshire Police
Sophie graduated in 2015 with a first in BA Hons Adventure and Extreme Sports Management and, due to her hard work and commitment, had three pathways immediately open to her. Sophie was offered a place at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, a place on a master's programme in business and marketing at Solent University, and the role of youth lead worker for Right Track Social Enterprise. After much deliberation, Sophie chose to pursue the role at Right Track where she was promoted to youth and community manager within six months. Unfortunately, due to funding issues with the charity she had to leave her role the following year. During this time Sophie considered several alternative avenues, including securing a position as an outdoor adventure lecturer and course manager at Moulton College. However, her passion for pursuing a unformed public service career continued and for the last three years, she has worked as a police officer for Nottinghamshire Police.

Justin Everley headshotJustin Everley, Commercial Director, Adventure Parc Snowdonia
Justin is an experienced commercial professional having worked for over 20 years in a range of recreational facilities both in the UK and abroad and drawing on his undergraduate degree in Sport and Leisure Management and MBA in Marketing. For the last few years, adventure students at Solent have been fortunate to be hosted by Justin at Adventure Parc Snowdonia (formerly Surf Snowdonia) as part of a field trip to North Wales in their final year. The trip enables students to gain insight into the commercialisation of the adventure tourism industry and the exciting opportunities the outdoors and the natural landscape can provide.

Dr Gill Pomfret headshotDr Gill Pomfret
Gill's research interests and publications focus on consumer behaviour, particularly applied to adventure tourism contexts. Specific adventure themes include participant motives and benefits, constraint negotiation, experiential journeys, self-efficacy and gender. She has written journal articles on mountaineer tourists and co-authored one of the first textbooks on adventure tourism (Adventure Tourism: The New Frontier). Her most recent publications explore family adventure tourism participation and she has published journal articles which report on the beneficial outcomes of shared family adventure experiences, with a particular focus on family wellbeing. Her current research continues to explore family adventure tourists and considers the subjective wellbeing of individual family members. She is also working on a research project investigating the wellbeing outcomes of adventure activity participation in national parks. Gill is a committee member of the Adventure Tourism Research Association (ATRA) and the Sheffield Hallam University Outdoor Recreation Research Group (ORRG). With other ORRG researchers, she is currently involved in a consultancy project with Sheffield City Council on The Outdoor City. When not working, Gill enjoys running, walking, climbing and generally being outdoors in the nearby Peak District National Park or further afield!

Tell your friends and academics

We can help make your day even more special by contacting fellow alumni and academics to let them know you're attending so they can join you. Get in touch with their name, subject and graduating year (if an alum) of those you would like to notify.

Share your Solent memories

We will be putting together an exhibition of photos and memories to celebrate 30 years of outdoor programmes at Solent University. If you have anything you wish to share from your time at University, we would love to hear from you. Please get in touch.

Support our next generation of students

Celebrate 30 years of outdoor programmes and enable more students to follow in your footsteps at Solent by donating to support our Local Student Bursary Scheme. This year we are awarding 17 bursaries to disadvantaged students from our local community, which will have a transformative effect on their lives. However, the need for this bursary is great - for every one Local Student Bursary available, over four students applied, meaning many students are now without the support of this essential bursary.

Volunteer at our careers fair

As part of the celebrations, we are hosting an exclusive schools/colleges adventure/outdoor and travel-themed Discovery Day and careers fair during the day, from 11.30am-4pm. If you would like to attend and host a stall on behalf of your company, please get in touch.

Register now