Five and not out for motivated student coach

6 September 2021

Mature student graduates for the fifth time after completing PhD study

An academic coach has graduated from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) for the fifth time after completing a six-year long PhD study.

Joe Pryle, 42, started off his journey on a foundation degree at a partner college, before attending the Preston Campus to top up his undergraduate coaching degree, and has since obtained a PGCE and Master’s qualification in Coaching.

Born in London before moving to Bolton when he was three-years-old, he then embarked on a PhD six years ago, in which he has recently completed a ground-breaking ethnographic study, with international significance, on a cultural exploration of Cricket in California.

Upon graduating, he said: “It has been the single biggest challenge of my life, but one that I am proud of and can help me to influence others. I have been working towards this since my return to the UK in 2008, after spending a period of time in the USA and Australia.”

Now a Student Coach in the School of Sport and Health Sciences at UCLan, Joe found the requirements of his PhD study challenging in parts but wants to use his student experience as a support mechanism to help others.

"It has been the single biggest challenge of my life, but one that I am proud of and can help me to influence others"

New PhD graduate Joe Pryle

“There are often periods during such a lengthy study that have you doubting your reasons for embarking on such a project, but I have several motivating factors that have driven me on,” admits the Blackrod Cricket captain.

“I am aiming to collaborate with a renowned author to create a book documenting cricket in Los Angeles, a socio-cultural view of how the sport can be used to positive effect to help integration and inclusion in a world fraught with division.

“I also want to continue to use my experiences as a student and researcher to help others in my job as a coach.

“I am a proud Lancastrian and have had a journey across five degree courses now at UCLan, each time having a positive experience and have built relationships with staff and peers that are second to none.”

Joe is now looking to the future and aiming help other students with his invaluable experience.

Written by Daniel Woffenden