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From Hollywood to Wrexham: WGU's Star Connections

From Hollywood to Wrexham: WGU's Star Connections

So, it looks like our university might be getting a new neighbour – with Ryan Reynolds revealed as a potential bidder for our football club, Wrexham AFC – right next door to our campus.

The Deadpool star – and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’s Rob McElhenney –have been confirmed as the two investors interested in the club, after members of Wrexham Supporters’ Trust voted overwhelmingly to proceed with negotiations with the bidders.

Despite the news seeming to come out of the blue, it’s not as surprising as you’d think. Ryan himself confirmed that when he replied to a Twitter user who said ‘you never know when Ryan Reynolds is going to turn up in Wrexham’ – and, when he does, he’ll find both a warm welcome and a town which has welcomed all kinds of famous faces before – including right here at our university.

Our Chancellor – Colin Jackson CBE – is among the famous faces you might see around Glyndwr – and with a background which covers both sport and the media, we’re sure he’d be happy to give Ryan some tips!

Colin started his Glyndwr journey as one of our Honourary Fellows – and, like him, our fellows are both famous for their sporting prowess  - like Robbie Savage, Michael Owen or Ian Rush – and through their links to stage, screen and beyond – such as the The Walking Dead’s Charlie Adlard and film director Sara Sugarman.

Each of our Honorary Fellows has appeared on stage at the William Aston Hall on our Plas Coch campus as part of our Graduation Ceremonies – as have hundreds of stars from comedy, music and beyond.

So when our Fellows have trod those boards, they’ve also been following in the footsteps of a host of stars who have appeared in the Hall – from comedy legends such as Jimmy Carr, Rhod Gilbert and Jason Manford to local heroes turned international bestsellers Neck Deep.

Stars

Our students have had the chance to work with professional musicians as part of their coursework thanks to the strong links we’ve built up with local organisations- such as the annual FOCUS Wales festival, parts of which are hosted on our campus.

And while live events may be on hold for the time being, that work is still continuing – with a series of Covid-secure events being filmed in our broadcast-standard studios to help keep FOCUS Wales fans in touch with the latest live music.

It’s not only our students on Creative Media courses who get the chance to work with top professionals – over the summer our sports students have heard from a range of key industry figures such as All Blacks performance analyst, Jamie Hamilton, alongside staff from Everton, Liverpool and many more.

Our Football Coaching and The Performance Specialist course also has regular contact with Wrexham AFC and the Racecourse as well – with students getting the chance to go behind the scenes at Wales internationals as well as Wrexham AFC matches.

So, as Mr Reynolds himself says, you never know who is going to turn up in Wrexham…

About the author

James Bailey

James Bailey

James graduated with a Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism many more years ago than he'd care to admit. He has held a number of roles in communications and journalism and is currently Press and Communications Officer at Wrexham Glyndwr University. He doesn't like having his picture taken.

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