I Got a Really Big Team

Posted By: Will Koppenhaver
Posted On: September 27th, 2016
Attending: Ulster University

It has been about a month since we arrived in Belfast and we are finally getting close to beginning our coursework.  As many of you reading this already know, I will be studying for my master’s degree in sport management.  As a part of this program, each year’s cohort of new students gets to go on a retreat together as a way to meet new people before classes start.  This year our group got to go to Castle Ward where Game of Thrones is filmed!  I have to be honest that I was psyched to hear about this since I am a huge “Throner.” 

Once we arrived at the castle, we had some short introductions about the courses that we would be studying before breaking off into teams for various challenges.  The first challenge that we had was to build rocket with a soda bottle, duct tape and laminated paper.  After building them, with the use of air pressure we got to shoot them to see which one went the furthest.  I can proudly say that our team won thanks to plenty of duct tape.  This challenge was a fun test for our group to work on together.  We continued to have other team building activities before coming back for round two on our second day there.

During the second day we did lots of team building activities that challenged us to solve them in different ways.  After doing a handful of them, it was nice to take a step back and think about how we solved them.  It is sometimes hard when you are in the moment to think of the perfect solution to the problem that you face.  It reminded me of the challenges of coaching youth.  Sometimes it is hard to think of the best way to work with different groups kids but you just have to choose what you think is best and roll with it.  And reflecting on the way that you did things helps you get better each time.  This same process will carry over to my group work that I will have in my master’s program.

Overall the retreat was great.  I had a ton of fun and got to meet plenty of people that I will be studying alongside in my master’s program.  I am looking forward to Monday when I finally get to jump into some fresh experiences and accomplish different victories with these new teammates.  #WeNeedSomeReallyBigRings

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