Queensland Women’s Week 2022: Paula Sargent

In celebration of  Queensland Women’s Week, meet Paula Sargent, PCYC Queensland State Gymnastics Coordinator 

A love for gymnastics and its power to propel young athletes towards greatness has been the driving force behind Paula’s 22 years at PCYC Queensland and some incredible personal achievements along the way.  

Tell us a bit about yourself and your journey at PCYC Queensland. 

I am a mum to two beautiful girls and been involved with gymnastics since I was 4 years old. I have been coaching for 30 years and have been with PCYC Queensland for 22 years. I started at PCYC Sandgate as a casual Gymnastics Coach, before moving onto the Head Coach & then Gymnastics Coordinator position at the Club. I have recently taken on the PCYC Queensland State Gymnastics Coordinator role.  

What is one of your proudest achievements during your time at PCYC Queensland (personally or professionally)?  

I’ve got lots of highlights from my gymnastics coaching career. I’ve achieved many special accolades over the years including Level 7 Open MAG State Teach Coach for Queensland, Queensland Men’s Coach of Year and Queensland Men’s Judge of Year.  I also received a special recognition award for my services in Men’s Gymnastics in Queensland. I have been proud to have coached numerous Regional and State champions over the years as well as having four gymnasts chosen to represent PCYC Sandgate at the High-Performance Centre.  

Above all though, what I really value from my job is being part of a the PCYC Queensland family, seeing our gymnasts and coaches grow up through the club and reaching their own achievements.  I love celebrating their successes no matter how small! Being part of a community that interacts with one another across all generations and regions and seeing gymnasts that I coached in KinderGym now bringing their children back to PCYC Queensland.  

Who are some of your biggest female inspirations & why? 

My mother, Maureen Sargent (OAM) is my biggest inspiration! I’ve always been in awe of her contribution to the community and her dedication to our country’s veterans. She amazes me each and every day with her tireless voluntary work. I am extremely proud to call her my mum and that my daughters have such an inspiring grandmother to look up to! She taught me to always treat those we love with respect and kindness. She has inspired, motivated & supported me to be the person that I have become today. 

Why do you think it’s important that we recognise Queensland Women’s Week? 

Working in gymnastics for 30 years which is made up by a large percentage of girls and having 2 daughters, I believe that we need to recognise and celebrate the contribution of women across our PCYC Queensland community and the state.  We need to strengthen our communities and create a more equal Queensland where everyone is valued. We need to celebrate these valuable achievements and bring about positive change. 

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? 

To always look at the positives in life and to treat all people with respect and kindness.     

What are one of your main goals for this year? 

 My main goal is to support the women in Gymnastics Coordinator roles and programs across Queensland by allowing them to be heard and valuing all their opinions. I want to work with them to build on our PCYC Queensland values of Commitment, Leadership, Teamwork, Passion and Respect and how we implement them into our clubs and gymnastics programs to the benefit of our athletes and their development as young people. I want us to work together with our athletes and their families as one PCYC Queensland family and make gymnastics (and all sport) a positive experience for everyone.