Worcester Warriors’ scrum half, Paul Hodgson, and Sale Sharks’ full back, Rob Miller, have proved that dedication off the pitch is just as important as it is on it. The pair both recently achieved first class degrees with honours in BA Leadership and Management.
The BA Leadership and Management degree was developed by RPA PDM (Rugby Players’ Association Player Development Manager) Mandy Thompson in partnership with Northumbria University in 2012 to offer our members a different kind of educational course and one that could be tailored to a professional rugby player’s needs.
The course is designed to allow RPA members to obtain a degree whilst continuing their playing career and help them prepare for life after rugby. Players are given extra credit based on their past playing experience, supported with regional study sessions and can ultimately earn a degree in just three years.
Sharks’ Miller, who started his degree whilst playing for Newcastle Falcons and joined the RPA cohort in 2012 was delighted with how things had worked out: “When I moved to Sale Sharks in 2010 I continued my studies via distance learning. Both the staff at Northumbria University and my PDM, Tim Nicholls, were extremely supportive during that time.
“The programme was flexible and relevant and I was able to fit in the work around a busy training and playing schedule. I was really happy with my final result and hopefully now I can use this in some form in the future.