Aspiring teachers encouraged to visit Nottingham’s Train to Teach roadshow

A former Nottingham Panthers player turned teacher is encouraging local people to find out about the fantastic rewards and opportunities the career offers by attending the Train to Teach roadshow when it visits the Crowne Plaza on Wednesday November 8.

Sam Oakford played ice hockey with the Panthers from 2014 to 2017 until he decided to change career.

A former Great Britain international, Sam qualified as a teacher last year is now at Bluecoat Academy, Aspley Lane, Aspley, Nottingham teaching PE and BTEC Sport alongside some academic coaching.

Sam is now backing the annual Get Into Teaching campaign, aimed at encouraging more graduates with the passion and potential to teach.

The Train to Teach roadshow is visiting cities across the country, offering a chance for aspiring teachers to get all their questions about a career in teaching answered in one place.

The events, organised by the National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL), highlight the competitive starting salaries and excellent employment prospects. They will also highlight the financial support available - you could get a £26,000 tax-free bursary to train as a teacher.

Sam, who is attending the Train to Teach event in Nottingham to share his experiences as a teacher with visitors, said: “I love being a teacher and I want to encourage more people to consider it as a future career.

“Being a professional sportsman was fantastic but everyone knows that doesn’t last forever, so when I got the opportunity to move into a new profession that was exciting, challenging and where you feel you can make a difference, I took full advantage of it. I enjoy going to work every day and that is hugely important.”

Sam also added that he enjoys the opportunity to work with young people and help them develop and grow.

He said: “As a teacher, you use your creativity to bring the subject you love to life and get pupils inspired by it. You help young people to fulfil their potential and realise their ambitions. I go home every day knowing I’ve made a real difference.

“If this sounds like a career you would enjoy, then come to the Train to Teach roadshow in Nottingham and find out more for yourself.”

Attendees will be able to meet representatives from schools and universities that provide teacher training, gain insights into how to make a strong application, and receive one-to-one advice from current teachers and teaching experts.

Applications for teacher training starting in September next year are now open and popular courses fill up fast.

Roger Pope, chairman of the National College for Teaching and Leadership, said: “Good teachers are in demand and the career provides excellent employment prospects with the opportunity to progress quickly. Alongside the generous bursaries and scholarships on offer, we provide a comprehensive programme of support to help people become teachers.

“The Train to Teach roadshow in Nottingham isn’t only for graduates – every year, we see people from other sectors switching to teaching, bringing a wealth of experience to help inspire the next generation.”

The free Train to Teach event is being held at the Crowne Plaza Nottingham, Wollaton Street, Nottingham, NG1 5RH on November 8, from 4.30pm to 8pm.

A range of online workshops and campus pop-up events offering support are also being held throughout this term.

To find out more about what life as a teacher is like, and to register for an event, visit: or call the Get Into Teaching Line on 0800 389 2500.

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