In order to become a qualified teacher, most people will go to university and study for a degree and then go on to study for their Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE). Although there are other routes into teaching, the majority of teachers at Woodham Academy have gained their qualifications this way.

One member of staff at Woodham Academy has been spent the last ten years studying for a variety of different qualifications and has now become a Doctor in his chosen field. After completing a Masters degree in Religious Studies at the University of Oxford. Teacher of Religious Studies, Dr Lycourinos then graduated from Cambridge University with a PGCE in religious Education in 2004 and after teaching for some years decided to leave teaching to complete his military service in Greece.

Returning to education in 2011, Dr Lycourinos went on to study for his PHD, also working part time as a lecturer and tutor at Edinburgh University. His research work has been published in a number of academic journals and the ambitious teacher has recently obtained a publishing contract with Routledge to print his thesis.

Since joining Woodham Academy in December 2015, Dr Lycourinos has formed a great rapport with his students. ‘The students are intrigued by my title of Dr. I explain about my education and they’re fascinated to hear about it. I hope I can encourage the students and give them aspirations for their future.’

Now that Dr Lycourinos has achieved the highest form of education his plans for the future include: attending the British Association for the study of Religion Conference in September where he is a keynote speaker, conducting further research and releasing more of his work to be published and of course continuing his beloved teaching.

‘My advice to students considering their options for the future would be to make sure you do what you love and ensure you’re fully aware of the job market. ‘He continued, ‘Gain work experience wherever possible, network and constantly look for funding opportunities.

If you can learn a second language that can also open a number of doors. My final piece of advice would be to do sport because it clears the mind and will give you a break from studying.’