When Gleb decided to study at Bournemouth University in 2013, little did he know that he’d also be starting an incredible journey with the town’s local football club. Gleb has been working at AFC Bournemouth since the very start of the university’s partnership with the club, a role he gained through the BU Student Ambassador scheme.
“When I first heard about the chance to work at AFC Bournemouth, I didn’t really know what to expect. But it all sounded so exciting, having the chance to be involved with a Championship club,” Gleb explains.
He was selected as one of four student ambassadors to work at the club that first year, and has been there every season since.
“The best thing about the job has been getting tickets to every home game,” he tells us. “I’ve been involved in a lot of different activities at the club, including helping on reception, working at the fan zone and kids’ zone and doing research, all before the game starts, but then I get to watch the matches.”
Gleb, who is originally from Latvia, admits that before he came to Bournemouth he didn’t know about the existence of the club, but just discovering it was exciting.
“When I came to university, it was my first time in the UK and I didn’t realise there was such a big club with big ambitions in Bournemouth, but it didn’t take me long to figure it out,” he smiles.
One of his standout memories is, naturally, seeing AFC Bournemouth gain promotion to the Premier League last season.
“I remember that day so clearly, I was with a group of fans who I’d got to know during my time working there. We were all talking about how we were feeling, sharing these memories, feeling super excited, but at the same time really scared.
“Standing in the stadium and listening to the crowd singing was amazing. And when Bournemouth scored the first goal, you just can’t describe the atmosphere, it was incredible.”
Aside from developing a personal attachment to AFC Bournemouth, Gleb has gained a lot from his time working at the club, including experiences and contacts that he hopes will serve him well once he finishes his degree in Business with Marketing and Finance.
“I’ve met so many interesting people,” he enthuses. “Rob Mitchell is a good example. I asked him to speak at a guest lecture for the university’s Marketing Society last year, which went really well and is something I wouldn’t have been able to do without my job at the club.”
Although he’s not sure what he wants to do when he graduates, Gleb is certain about one thing: “I really hope that I’m able to stay close to and active within the club, even if I’m not working there anymore, and at least enjoy watching the games and seeing AFC Bournemouth play in the Premier League.”