Bachelor of Health Science (Exercise) student Cooba Watkins receives sought after opportunity with ACPE industry partner, UFC GYM Bankstown

Bachelor of Health Science (Exercise) student Cooba Watkins receives sought after opportunity with ACPE industry partner, UFC GYM Bankstown

Cooba Watkins is currently on the last leg of his Bachelor of Health Science (Exercise) degree with ACPE. After studying full time, he now only has two more units left before completing his degree this year. Taking advantage of the industry partnerships at ACPE, Cooba has managed to score himself a sort after Management position with UFC GYM Bankstown.


UFC GYM Bankstown is not only an industry partner to ACPE, but also has an association with ACPE Alumni, Paul Collins (aka., who is the National Fitness Director of UFC GYM Australia. Paul who regularly speaks at the College, also has published several fitness books, which are available from the ACPE Library including his new release titled Sports Strength.


Paul contacted ACPE Head of Department, Trevor Clarke, where he was the first to reach out to Cooba about the position; “They thought I would be perfect for the position due to my martial arts background”. It was from there Cooba seek the assistance from the ACPE Career Development Services Team; “The career development team helped me with preparing for the interview”.


When asking Cooba about the role so far, he cannot speak highly enough; “I’m responsible for running the entire fitness section, which includes finding coaches and upskilling of Personal Trainers. I run my own classes such as MMA, Boxing, Kickboxing, Daily Functional Training for adults and children and have the opportunity to Personal Train to increase my earning potential. Everything I’ve learned in my course is applicable here, from advanced training principles, to skill acquisition. It’s basically my dream role.”


When asked what advice he would give to other students looking to gain work and experience while studying, Cooba says to build relationships and don’t take yourself too seriously. He says to remember it’s about providing value, the right people will find you when you’re needed. Cooba also urges all students to utilize the Library, as it really helped him more than anything. Adding; “I believe they give out free redskins now, so get amongst it.”


Coach Collins, who also gets to work alongside UFC world champions (BJ Penn and Paul – Pictured) says there are many more employment opportunities for ACPE students moving forwards in senior management, fitness management, reception and personal training both full-time and casual. UFC GYM’s located close to ACPE include Bankstown, Parramatta and Wetherill Park. UFC GYM has 10 gyms nationally with 11 more opening over the next 24 months. For more details visit:

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