Find out more about the new Pathways Coordinator here at Continuing and Professional Education, Dr David Frayne.
Tell us what your role at Continuing and Professional Education entails.
I work here as the Pathways Co-ordinator, helping to oversee the many Pathways to a Degree courses we offer at the school. In terms of day-to-day responsibilities, I do a fair amount of behind-the-scenes work, and also spend a lot of time answering enquiries and talking to students about their educational aspirations and progression. This might involve helping students choose their course options, offering some support with study skills, or helping students to fill out their university applications and prepare for their degree interviews. Many students can be a bit daunted by this process at first, but they are always relieved to find out that we have a good support system in place.
Before working as the Pathways Co-ordinator, I also taught for two terms on our Pathway to Social Science, designing the sociology component of the course and running the classes on a Tuesday evening. This is one of the most enjoyable jobs I have ever had. Everyone got to know each other well by the end, and I also had the pleasure of teaching many of the Pathway students later on, on their degree courses in the School of Social Sciences.
I will be attending the Pathways open day on 11th January, so I would invite anyone curious about Pathways to come and talk to me. We now run Pathways in a wide range of subject areas, with students progressing from our courses on to undergraduate degrees every September.
What are your favourite parts of this role?
I like meeting the students at CPE because they have made a very conscious choice to study with us. This means that there is a lot of enthusiasm in the classes. Having a class of mature students with some life experience was also a real bonus when teaching a discipline like sociology. There were always opportunities to tie the material to current events and personal histories, and the students’ voices and experiences became quite central to what went on in the classroom. No two groups are ever the same.
What are your proudest achievements?
I am quite proud of my teaching awards. I have won a few now, including a nomination for ‘Outstanding New Tutor’ from the National Institute of Adult and Continuing Education. This was for my work on the Pathway to Social Science.
What did you do before you came to CPE?
It’s been quite a mixed-bag, altogether. I was previously a lecturer in Cardiff University’s School of Social Sciences, where I specialised in the areas of global and alternative education. I also published my first book, The Refusal of Work, at the end of 2015. The book argues for a future where jobs would no longer be so central to our survival, rights, and identities. The reception has been quite overwhelming so far, with reviews in places like the Guardian and Financial Times. I get invited to speak at quite a lot of events now, so on the days where I am not working in CPE, I can often be found talking about my book in bookshops and public debates, or on the radio.
If you’d like to find out more about our Pathways to a Degree courses, email: FrayneDM@cardiff.ac.uk or call: 029 2087 0000.