We received the following nomination for our Wonder Welsh Women campaign from Assembly Minister, Julie James, and had a fairly easy decision in picking Robyn Lock this week:

It is my pleasure to write a letter nominating Robyn Lock for the Chwarae Teg initiative, ‘Wonderful Welsh Women’.

I think that Robyn is someone that exemplifies the characteristics and traits that the Wonderful Welsh Women campaign is aiming to highlight.

In her role as Swansea University Students’ Union Sports Officer, Robyn’s achievements in promoting women’s sport and charity fundraising are outstanding. Furthermore, her successes away from this role, both sporting and otherwise, serve as true inspiration to all students.

Being elected to the role of Sports Officer was an impressive accomplishment in itself, winning around 2000 votes from students. Robyn became the first female full-time officer in two years and the tenth to ever be elected.

Once in the role, her achievements were extraordinary. In November alone, she oversaw the raising of £10,000 for charity: £6500 for the men’s health charity ‘Movember’ and £3500 for Children in Need. Of particular relevance to the ‘Wonderful Welsh Women’ title is her advancement of female participation in sport at Swansea University. She ran a ‘Ladies Day’ which had unprecedented results in the amount of money raised and the number of girls taking part in female sports day competition.

Outside of the Student Union, her personal accolades in sport are equally as impressive. Robyn captained the Swansea women’s rugby team at Varsity, the most prestigious sporting event for students of both Cardiff and Swansea. Beyond university, she represents the Swansea Whites ladies and the Ospreys, playing to a regional standard.

Her talent and passion for a sport often regarded as ‘male’ gained her the role of Ospreys U18’s Women’s Team Manager. Robyn is also Chair of the Welsh University Sports, helping improve sport for all students across Wales and has worked with BUCS to help host the World University Rugby 7’s Tournament.

All of these accomplishments are exceptional in their own right, but become truly inspirational in light of her personal circumstances. During her second year of studies, Robyn was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, a disease she had witnessed her best friend and house-mate battle, and also defeat, just months previously.

Despite this, she seldom mentions the experience and took it in her stride as another challenge to be faced rather than the cruel reality of a situation that few could comprehend. Having taken a year out of studies to fight the cancer which she already had first-hand experience of, Robyn graduated with a 2:1 (Hons) in Marine Biology, an incredible achievement, even compared to her remarkably high standards.

Robyn faced circumstances that anyone would dread and struggle with, let alone a student in her early 20’s but can still proudly show her achievements that stand out in their own right.

I have personally been inspired by Robyn as a female role model and passionately believe she deserves recognition.