BU’s partnership with AFC Bournemouth was celebrated during the BU Big Match vs Everton, in the last round of Premier League games before the World Cup.
The theme of this year’s match was international – a reflection of the international reach of both organisations. 10 international BU students were guests of honour, and watched the game before being invited onto the pitch at half time to share their experiences of moving to Bournemouth and studying at BU.
Students from the USA, Nepal, Germany, Ecuador, Brazil and Qatar joined AFC Bournemouth Chairman and BU honorary doctorate Jeff Mostyn in a pitch-side photo before the start of the second half, along with BU Vice-Chancellor Professor John Vinney, Chair of the BU Board David Furniss, and Chief Operating Officer Jim Andrews.
BU is the official higher education partner of AFC Bournemouth, with the partnership working for the benefit of staff, students, supporters and the local community.
Ahead of the match, international BU students also had the opportunity to visit the Vitality Stadium and interview Cherries attacker Emiliano Marcondes. Marcondes, who moved from his native Denmark to the UK to play football, discussed moving to a new country, engaging in culture, and his dreams of playing in the Premier League with the students. A video sharing the students’ experience played before the game inside and outside the ground for supporters to enjoy.
The partnership was also celebrated in the matchday programme, with articles about the partnership, which is now in its tenth year, and photos and stories from BU alumni around the world who are still celebrating the Cherries in their respective countries.
Ian Jones, Head of External Engagement at Bournemouth University, said, “We are so proud of our partnership with AFC Bournemouth, and the opportunities it creates for our students to engage with a Premier League team. Our thanks go to all at the Club who made us feel welcome and helped us to celebrate the partnership on the day.”
AFC Bournemouth beat Everton 3-0 in the match, with goals from Marcus Tavernier, Jaidon Anthony, and Kieffer Moore, who now heads to the World Cup in Qatar to represent Wales.
After the match, England netball captain and new BU honorary doctorate Geva Mentor CBE joined BU and AFC Bournemouth staff in the Board Room to enjoy the celebrations.
For more information about the partnership between BU and AFC Bournemouth, visit https://www.bournemouth.ac.uk/collaborate/afc-bournemouth or view the highlights from the BU Big Match on Instagram.