From high flying city finance to teacher training

Published: 9 November 2006 at 11:37

The prize-winning university student and Chelmsford Borough Councillor making a lifestyle change.

Over 25 years of working in financial markets in the City of London, ultimately as the Treasurer of a Danish Bank, would seem a highly acceptable career path for most people - but not so for Martin Bracken from Chelmsford.

The Chelmsford Borough Councillor, and family man, had always thought he would be ideally suited to teaching rather than to finance and having a wife and sister in the teaching profession helped to confirm these thoughts. So he joined Anglia Ruskin University, as a mature student, to study for a first degree, the pre-requisite to entering teacher training.

Now at the age of 47 he is preparing to attend his graduation ceremony (on 22 November) with fellow students from the Ashcroft International

Business School; and pick up a prize for being the strongest overall performing student from his Business Management degree programme, an award sponsored by independent chartered accountants and business advisers Bird Luckin. The average mark he attained during the course was over 80%.

His course leader Graham Webster said of his performance:

“Martin has been an exceptional business management student. His many years of experience derived from the financial services sector have stood him in good stead for his degree study experience. His reason for studying with us was to progress onto a teacher training course but if he had gone onto study for an MBA (Master of Business Administration) he would undoubtedly have excelled in this also.”

Martin is currently studying for a Professional Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) at the University’s Faculty of Education which will see him qualify as a teacher in May 2007.

Martin explained:

“When I’d completed 25 years of working in the  City I think I realised that that was enough and that I wanted a change of lifestyle which was when I approached Anglia Ruskin University about undergraduate degree study.”

“It was a strange experience being from a different generation to my fellow students. I had to sidestep the social life because of the age difference. You could say that I had more in common with the lecturers than the students.  But it was all a very positive experience. The University helped me to achieve what I wanted to achieve and I am very grateful for that. My son is a student there now and so we both share the same University.”

“My interest is in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and I have already gained some experience of teaching the subject in school. It is definitely the right career choice for me and, who knows, I might be helping to teach some of the high flying financial managers of the future!”