Loreto College - Coleraine, Co. Derry, Northern Ireland
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Paralympic and World Champion Michael McKillop with Senior students and Mrs M McCullough, Head of PE - View Full Size Image
Paralympic and World Champion Michael McKillop with Senior students and Mrs M McCullough, Head of PE
Michael McKillop with Y10 students and Mrs M McCullough, Head of PE, embarking on the Sky Sports Living for Sport Challenge - View Full Size Image
Michael McKillop with Y10 students and Mrs M McCullough, Head of PE, embarking on the Sky Sports Living for Sport Challenge
01/03/2016 LORETO COLLEGE STUDENTS INSPIRED BY MICHAEL McKILLOP VISIT

Triple Paralympic Gold-Medallist and World Paralympic Champion Michael McKillop paid a return visit to Loreto College Coleraine on Monday 29th February, speaking to several groups of students before working closely with a small group as part of the Youth Sport Trust Sky Sports Living for Sport Programme.

Sky Sports Living for Sport uses sport stars and sport skills to improve young people's lives. This initiative is designed to inspire and support every participant in areas relevant to them whether it's improving confidence, attainment at school or leading a healthier lifestyle.

To begin the day, Michael McKillop spoke inspiringly to Year 9 and Year 10 students about his own personal challenges and achievements.  Reinforcing the message that ‘if you believe, you can achieve’, this inspiring world champion and Paralympic triple Gold winner (2008 and 2012) spoke openly and frankly about his own personal challenges and how he had harnessed his extreme determination to turn challenges into opportunities, surmounting a succession of obstacles to achieve his goals.

Michael McKillop also talked inspiringly about the support of his family, friends, coaches and supporting team, paying tribute to those who had helped him throughout his career, as well as describing some of the rewards, whether personal or more tangible, for his determination and success.

Later, Michael McKillop worked intensively for several hours with a group of 20 Year 10 students who are undertaking the Sky Sports Living for Sport Challenge.  These students will take on a ‘Couch to 5km’ challenge, working for approximately 7 weeks before completing the Portrush Parkrun in mid April. 

Experienced runners in the group will be expected to train towards attaining a Personal Best time while also working to help the less experienced runners in the group.  For some group members, training to complete a 5km run will be a first time challenge; all group members will train several times each week, including during the Easter holidays.

The programme  aims to motivate and encourage students through the application of the skills and discipline involved in sport to life as a whole.  Mrs Maureen McCullough, Head of PE at Loreto College, paid tribute to Michael McKillop for inspiring and enthusing the students preparing to take on the 5km Challenge, while Mr Michael James, College Principal, thanked Michael McKillop for his engaging and often moving motivational speeches.