Congratulations, you have found the biography of Martyn Edwards! If this was by accident, escape now whilst there is still time. If you’ve already met me and wanted to know more – I’m sorry, its too late for you, you may as well keep reading.
I have travelled a long way but a short distance to get to the University of Manchester. The ‘short distance’ is literal, about 5 miles, as I was born ‘up the road’ in Droylsden and still live locally. I now live with my wife of 21 years and our youngest son, our other son having now left home and got married. Yes I am really that old!
The ‘long way’ to the University of Manchester started when I dropped out of University. I had gone to University at the age of 18, as expected by my parents, despite underachieving at both GCSE and A Levels. It soon became apparent that a change in academic fortune was not imminent. I was a square peg, trying to fit a round hole and once I realised that I was, technically, an adult I left university and spent the next 18 years working within the UK manufacturing sector. I started out, fresh faced and full of hope, selling health and safety equipment and ended up designing warehousing systems for companies like Marks & Spencer, BAE Systems, Toyota and Jaguar.
Determined to further my career I talked my way onto an MBA with Derby University. This was supposed to enable me to reach the top management positions from which I was excluded by my academic history. But then something happened which was not supposed to happen. I found that I loved studying, and wanted to share my new love. In a move which my wife likes to call my ‘mid-life crisis’, I took redundancy and started a PGCE along side the MBA.
For my Masters’ Dissertation I researched the motivations of students undertaking an undergraduate degree via work-based learning. This dissertation earned me a distinction in my MBA and I became a Chartered Manager. This, together with my PGCE was meant to be the end of my education.
Then one Friday evening something else strange happened. I had been complaining about my teaching role, and the frustrations of a broken education system when my wife ‘advised’ me that I should ‘put up or shut up’ and showed me the advertisement for a PhD position at the University of Manchester, on the Learning Gain project. After realising that she was serious, I looked into the project and its aims. It turned out that other people were interested in understanding how a students academic disposition affects their ability to achieve at university. I thought I had wasted a full weekend writing a PhD proposal, to meet the closing date, but here I am. Not so fresh faced but full of hope once again.
If you have made it through the entirety of this biography, then congratulations again. If you want to know more then you will have to contact me.