Cardiff Alumni 2015 – James Thomas9 July 2015
We speak to Cardiff graduate James Thomas about the benefits of joining sports clubs at Cardiff University and where they can lead you. James studied Biomedical Science at Cardiff University and is now a professional rugby player at Newport Gwent Dragons.
1. Hi James, what do you study at Cardiff University?
I study biomedical science at Cardiff.
2. Why did you decide to study that subject?
Mainly due to me doing science at A-levels. My interest has always been in the body and how it works which led me to go down the physiology route of biomed.
3. How would you describe your experience at Cardiff University?
I’d have to say they were best years of my life so far, really enjoyable met some lifelong friends, hard work at times but always a good laugh!
4. Did you become involved in any societies or student media during your time here?
Around varsity a few of us always helped out with the student media whether it be interviews and some “funny” question and answers about team mates and also helped them do a few challenges such as the cross bar challenge, We had a good relationship with Ed Ludlow and that seemed to work well. Also in this year’s varsity I helped out with the student radio, myself Martyn fowler and a couple of old boys did some interviews which was pretty fun!
The rugby club was everything really it was the stepping stone for me applying and getting in, and I can’t thank Martyn fowler enough for all he did in helping me get in as I applied so late on. So it’s was brilliant to play and get involved in the club met most of my friends and housemates through there, played in some good teams and against good teams, got involved as social secretary and organised the tour so the club took more of my time than work at most times! But the boys are such a tight group and all know how to have fun.
5. How important was your rugby in Cardiff University, especially when you lead the Varsity team, as a stepping stone to your performances for the Dragons?
The varsity was a brilliant experience just to play in the stadium in front of the whole university was unbelievable, an experience that you may not be able to get elsewhere.
For me when I joined university I was just coming back from two bad knee injuries and hadn’t played for close to 14 months so the rugby club allowed me to ease back in and play regularly and ultimately allow me to start enjoying the game again.
This then led me to start playing well for Bedwas in the Welsh premiership where Martyn again had a good relationship and over my time at university I got back to playing well which ended up with me getting a shot in the dragons.
6. What has been the best moments you have had during your time here?
Best moment would have to be winning varsity first year that was brilliant, and the rollover celebrations that carried on for a few days after.
Rugby tour will most definitely be hard to forget.
7. How are you feeling about graduating?
Pretty excited to graduate, when you start I think the end image is you with the cap and gown, and having seeing most of my mates graduate the last couple of years Im ready for mine!
8. You’ve had a good season at the Dragons, what are your aims for the future?
Well I’m with dragons for the next couple of years so my aim is to kick on from last year and improve on my performances and keep progressing I suppose which hopefully will result in me playing my rugby there for longer.
9. What advice would you give to first years who are passionate about sport when coming to Cardiff University?
I think my main advice to anyone is to join a club and get as involved as you can. I some people feel they are too good for certain levels of clubs and some think they are not good enough but that missed the point of joining the club, I think what you get from a club or society goes further than just the games its everything else that comes with it, and from my experience the people who put themselves out there and get involved are more successful in lots of aspects of student life.