James Baxter

Coming to Uni was an incredible opportunity for me to continue pursuing my sporting passion while studying for my future career. From the Students’ Union staff to the lecturers, the team at Bucks has been exceptionally helpful in making the balance between training and studying as easy as possible. From joining the Swim team to graduating, they have been there every step of the way. They’ve encouraged my involvement in the university community and supported my development as a student and as an athlete.

When I was a fresher, I was introduced to the swim team by a member of staff and they had such a warm welcome, which made fitting into the team and the Bucks sporting family feel seamless. We compete in the British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) league. The BUCS competitions and the annual Bucks Varsity are a great chance to get to know the broader team of the Bucks supporting community.

In the second year of my studies, I had the chance to be a student leader by becoming the chair of the swimming squad. The team at the Students’ Union helped so much in supporting the role and keeping me fully informed with my duties and assisting me with the best way to carry them out whilst balancing training and my studies.

The community and attitude at Bucks is unbelievably supportive and friendly, no matter what sports you decide to take part in. I came to Bucks to swim and study, and now as I complete my final year of study, not only do I take part in even more sport socially than I ever thought I would, but I’ve also been awarded a space in the elusive Hall of Fame. It’s an honour that is given to a select few athletes at Bucks and it now means that I have a frame hanging in the gateway building along with the other winners. I was given this award at the 2021 Athletics Union Dinner and it’s honestly one of the highlights of my sporting career.

There’s so much more on offer than simply ‘playing sports’ and it’s all down to the Students’ Union’s commitment to providing the Big Deal, which means all students can take part in any sport free of charge. It’s a fantastic offer that opens up sporting opportunities to everyone and removes so many barriers, and I would advise all fresher’s to take advantage of this and try their hand at any sport that interests them, it’s a once in a lifetime chance.


- James Baxter, Sporting Hall of Fame 2021