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The Lucy Cav, Churchill, and Christ's women’s football team is a welcoming team open to undergrad and postgrad students of any experience level.

Erin Hayes is a second-year PhD student in astronomy at Lucy Cavendish College, Cambridge. She is also a passionate football player, and last year she joined the women's team for Lucy Cav, Churchill, and Christ's (CCC).

Erin is one of many students at Lucy Cavendish who juggle demanding academic commitments with other activities they love. In this blog post, Erin talks about balancing PhD studies with playing football, the importance of making friends, and being part of a supportive community.

“Prior to Cambridge, I completed my BA and MS in physics at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA in the US. I grew up in the Philadelphia area, so my first big move away from home was to Cambridge last year.

Growing up, my “sport” was actually dance. I have trained in ballet and contemporary since I was 3 years old. When I moved to Cambridge last year, though, I really enjoyed playing casual five-a-side football matches and watching the World Cup. So I thought it would be fun to try out football at Lucy when I saw a post about the first training at the beginning of Michaelmas Term 2023.

The Lucy Cav, Churchill, and Christ's women’s football team (affectionately called “CCC”) is a welcoming team open to undergrad and postgrad students of any experience level. No tryouts are required to join the team and students are welcome to join the team at any point during the year (so it’s not too late to come out for the team!). We meet for weekly matches during term time, and on off weeks without matches, we hold training sessions to build our individual skills and teamwork. While we love to see everyone at our matches/training every week, you are free to attend as many or as few matches as you’d like, depending on what works in your schedule. We are led by our lovely, kind, and incredibly talented captain, Sophie Claxton from Churchill College.

We have already grown so much as a team. After having to forfeit our first match of the season due to low attendance, we came back for a triumphant 1-0 win against Fitzwilliam/Corpus in our last match of Michaelmas term. We’re looking forward to more wins this term!

Off the pitch, we’ve also been very lucky to grow friendships across colleges, year groups, and degrees. This year, we’ve started a tradition of going for hot chocolate after games and had an end-of-term training after which we all went for lunch together. We are also planning to attend a Lucy formal in February, among other plans for community building outside of games.”

Thanks to your incredible support at the Festival of Giving last October, Lucy Cavendish College was able to help CCC secure a brand-new kit. We can't wait to see them take the field in it.

If you want to learn more about CCC, please follow them on Instagram (@churchchristcavwomens) or join the Facebook group, where you can find information about matches and training. Anyone is welcome to join the team regardless of experience level. No try-outs required.