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“I have found my true vocation in teaching, and discovered a lot of happiness.”

Are there any similarities between professional football and teaching religious education? Yes – according to one Edge Hill University alumnus who’s done both!

Glynn Hurst was a professional footballer, playing for the likes of Tottenham Hotspur, Barnsley and Notts County, before injuries forced him to think about a new career off the pitch. After graduating with a BA in Key Stage 2/3 which majored in RE, he’s now found that new challenge as a teacher at Sacred Heart College in Crosby, Merseyside.

He says that you have the same aims, whether you’re standing in front of a class of schoolchildren or a stadium full of football fans.

Glynn says: “The two are actually linked. In both cases, their future outcomes depend on me and they are both a performance, of a kind. You just want to do your best for all of them.

“Football was all I ever wanted to do – probably to the detriment of my studies. When I had injuries and some problems with my back, I realised I had to start looking at a number of options to prepare for the future, and it was teaching RE which stood out.”

Glynn discovered his own faith in his mid-20s so using his interest in scripture, history and Christianity seemed an obvious choice for a new career. And, thanks to the Fastrack course at Edge Hill University, he was able to enrol on a degree course, despite his lack of formal qualifications.

“The lecturers at Edge Hill were so supportive and encouraging it bowled me over,” added Glynn. The way they brought together people in the same classroom made it a really good experience. We were people coming from lots of different backgrounds, but we could still relate to each other and share our knowledge, as well as talk about the skills we needed to learn. We really helped each other, I think.

“Now I have a fantastic job, I have really landed on my feet. The children are very teachable, so keen and interested – they are the people who make the job so enjoyable. I know it’s a Roman Catholic College, but the children are so open to RE as a subject.

“I also have a great work-life balance so I can spend time with my wife and my son Josh. I don’t have a long term game plan now – I simply want to become as good a teacher as I can.

“I have found my true vocation in teaching, and discovered a lot of happiness.”

To find out more about studying this programme, please view full course information for BA (Hons) Secondary Religious Education with QTS.