Derek Bowler returns to Dundee to Instruct a Course
McGuire Programme Course Instructor Derek Bowler returned to the Queens Hotel, Dundee, this month to instruct a four day, intensive, course. Seven years earlier, in 2007, Derek was a new student in the Queens Hotel, awaiting the start of his first life-changing course on the McGuire Programme. How times have changed for Derek over the last seven years! He has now learned to control his debilitating stutter and has become an articulate and eloquent speaker. He also has the skills to inspire and motivate new students to do the same as he did.
On Wednesday 10th October 2007, Derek Bowler, 39, from Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, arrived at the Queens Hotel in Dundee to begin his first McGuire Programme stuttering therapy course. Over the next four days Derek went through the transformation to his speech and mindset that typifies the experience of so many people who stammer who attend McGuire Programme courses. On the Sunday afternoon Derek Bowler left the course in full control of his stutter and was ready to go back home and to return to work to carry on his journey to become an eloquent and articulate speaker. Derek followed all directions given after his first course - he spoke regularly to his allocated coach, devoted time to phoning all the other available coaches for advice and support, attended his local McGuire Programme support group and put effort into challenging his remaining feared words, sounds and situations. A month after his first course Derek traveled to Bournemouth to attend his first full McGuire Programme refresher course.
Over the next few years Derek Bowler continued to work hard on his speech and remained solidly in control of his stammer. He attended numerous further courses. Newspaper articles and a TV interview soon followed. He applied for and was successful in staff training and became a coach on the Programme. Following further training, in February 2013, he co-instructed his first course in Wigan, Lancashire.
Other speaking opportunities and challenges continued to appear. On Thursday 9th May 2013 Derek Bowler was invited to the House of Commons in London to attend the launch of the British Stammering Association's Employers Stammering Network. An introduction to the Rt Hon Ed Balls MP, Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, was made. Like Derek (and everyone else on The McGuire Programme), Ed Balls is a person who stutters but he does not allow it to impact on his role as a Labour Party politician.
On Wednesday 15th October 2014, Derek Bowler, 46, returned to the Queens Hotel in Dundee to begin his first solo instruction of a McGuire Programme course. Seven years, nearly to the day, since he attended his first McGuire Programme course in the same conference room, in the same hotel, in the same city, the story reached full circle. There were sixteen apprehensive but determined new students on this year's Dundee course. As usual, they displayed a wide range of stuttering behaviours at the beginning of the course. All worked hard, all followed directions and all completed the course. Derek Bowler instructed the course material and was the main role model for the new students.
If you stutter, if you stammer, something can be done about it. In 2007 Derek Bowler wanted to learn how to control his stutter. He was given the necessary techniques, tools and weapons to enable him to control his stammer and to learn how to let go and actually have fun speaking. By October 2014 he had come so far that he was very able at teaching sixteen new students how they could emulate him and do the same for themselves.