The Ken Wall Centre of Excellence at Leinster Rugby and the School of Health and Human Performance at Dublin City University (DCU) are proud to announce a new partnership.

The collaboration between the two institutions will aim to provide further practical learning opportunities for students studying on various academic programmes in DCU.

The programmes involved include;

• The BSc in Sport Science and Health,
• The BSc Athletic Therapy and Training, and
• The MSc in Athletic Therapy and Strength and Conditioning.

There will also be opportunities to collaborate on applied research projects with the interdisciplinary team on Leinster Rugby’s player development pathway based in the Ken Wall Centre of Excellence in Energia Park.

Speaking to, David Fagan, Lead Pathway Athletic Development Coach, said, “We are really excited to partner with DCU’s School of Health and Human Performance.

“Leinster Rugby is committed to developing home grown talent both on and off the field and this collaboration will help us to continually improve our player development pathway and also provide invaluable learning opportunities for the next generation of sport science and medicine practitioners, who could potentially come to work with Leinster Rugby at some capacity in the future.

“There are very obvious benefits for both ourselves and DCU and we look forward to working with Dr Siobhán O’Connor, her faculty colleagues and their students over the coming years.”

For third year students studying the BSc in Sport Science and Health in DCU, training placement opportunities will be provided for their integrated training (INTRA) programme by Leinster Rugby at the Ken Wall Centre of Excellence, based in Energia Park.

Fourth year BSc Athletic Therapy and Training students will have opportunities for their final year placements, while students studying the MSc in Athletic Therapy and Strength and Conditioning course will also have opportunities for final year placements.

There will be further opportunities for final year undergraduate and postgraduate students from both courses on the Leinster Rugby Athletic Development Mentorship Programme, which has a long-standing relationship with DCU, to engage on a range of applied practical modules led by members of the Senior, Academy, and pathway staff at Leinster Rugby.

Dr Siobhán O’Connor, Associate Professor in Athletic Therapy and Training, DCU, said, “DCU’s School of Health and Human Performance is thrilled to team up with Leinster Rugby to elevate sports excellence and drive innovation through these research and placement opportunities.

“The School of Health and Human Performance prides itself on ensuring our students receive high-standard applied opportunities throughout their time in DCU and this new collaboration signifies both DCU’s and Leinster Rugby’s commitment to advancing the sport of rugby through cutting-edge research and providing unparalleled placement opportunities benefiting the club, players and students themselves.”

Leinster Rugby has a long history of research projects with various institutions and this latest partnership with DCU is a further statement on intent to continue investing in the player pathway and is an extension of the work already underway in the Ken Wall Centre of Excellence and across the communities of the 12 counties of Leinster.

Working together with DCU, applied research questions will be developed with practical insights from the team at the Centre of Excellence and the research expertise of the staff at the School of Health and Human Performance.

The aim of this research collaboration is to develop practical and useful information that can be used to improve practice on Leinster’s player development pathway, and also provide DCU students with further knowledge and skills to excel in their future careers in sports science and medicine.


Hear more from the partnership launch below.