Keep Informed > Where Are You Now? > 1970-1979 > Paul Chamberlin

Where Are You Now?

Paul Chamberlin

Paul Chamberlin

BSc General Science (Physics) 1971

Position and company: Retired

After completing his degree in Sunderland, Paul stayed at the Sunderland Polytechnic and started a PhD in nuclear physics and taught A Level physics to augment his Science Research Council (SRC) award. However, before completing his PhD Paul was offered a good job and left Sunderland to embark on the next chapter of his career. 

Paul commented: “I was offered a job in London with BT a year later, a fantastic and irresistible opportunity, and had a great career with them. I was working in Business Planning providing reports to the BT Board.

“I went from there into project management, then into contracts and intellectual property rights, then quality management and finally personnel. I project managed a redundancy programme to downsize the BT engineering workforce via productivity gains. I took the package myself at 49 and received my pension at 50. I then took on part time work with Group 4 and HMRC Taxes.”

He continued: “I moved back to Sunderland 33 years ago and I bought a house in Cleadon Village. It turned out my next-door neighbour was one of my former tutors Mac English, and we became best friends. I recently met Eric Fletcher another tutor who also lives in Cleadon. Would you believe it one of my former classmates now too lives in Cleadon. What a small world.”

Reflecting back on his career, Paul said: “My career is over, but I was fortunate to gain experience in a wide range of management disciplines which enabled me to embrace change and with it variety-the spice of life.”

Asked about his greatest achievement to date, Paul replied: “Getting to 74 and still physically fit.” Commenting on his biggest challenge, he said: “I always see a challenge as an opportunity. If they say it cannot be done, then I would be ready to project manage it!”

Paul still remembers with fondness his time in Sunderland. He was 19 when he came to study at the Sunderland Polytechnic, lived in a flat and was working in a paint laboratory.

“I had an ONC in Chemistry not A levels. Universities required 3 A level. So, Sunderland was a practical choice. I was lucky because in the final year of my BSc I was the sole student on the physics honours course,” he said.

He continued: “I owe a lot to Sunderland Poly and thoroughly enjoyed my time there. It provided the opportunity for me to get a degree and I am forever in its debt.”

Paul’s advice for graduates entering the job market is: “Read the job description and write a short 2-pages CV and ensure you provide the evidence to show you have the qualities and experience to match. Then role play your interview with a friend and practise your delivery and at the interview be yourself.”

As for his future plans, Paul concluded: “Continue with my Italian studies, cycling in summer, skiing in winter, singing in my choir, swimming at my club, walking holidays, doing my DIY, enjoying the pleasure of waking up every morning to start my new day and walking the dog every day with my wife.”

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