Now in his 37th year Sheffield Wednesday Skipper Lee Bullen has enjoyed an eventful career that has seen him ply his trade on three different continents and occupy every position on the park from Goalkeeper to Centre Forward.
Now heading towards retirement, Lee’s highlights include winning the League One play-off final at the Millennium Stadium with the Owls in 2005 and an appearance for Hong Kong side Golden Athletic v England in the infamous build up to the 1996 European Championships.
This season and last, Lee has been preparing for the day when he finally hangs up his boots by undertaking a BA Hons in Sports Journalism at Staffordshire University under the tutelage of ex-Sheffield Wednesday star Lawrie Madden. Juggling his football commitments has not been easy and while ideally he would like to stay in the game, perhaps on the coaching side, he says that:
“Gaining an education is empowering and opens up a host of opportunities.”
“When studying and playing you do have to be disciplined. All of us on the course are different in our approach to how we get the balance right. It’s down to the individual and how they manage their time.”
Lee was a reasonably late starter in the game, becoming a full time professional player at 21 and had worked in the “real world” before his career, something he feels was very important in shaping his whole persona.
“Playing football is like living in a bubble and if that bubble bursts it is important to have an education to soften the blow. It is important for clubs to encourage young players to have another vocation.”
“An education in whatever sense is not only something to fall back on but it helps boost confidence and self-esteem. I’m a big supporter of the work LFE is doing to promote this ethos and am proud to be associated with Progression 08.”