Preston have handed young defender Bailey Wright a two-and-a-half year professional deal, with the club also holding an option for a further 12 months.
The 18-year-old Australian has made two appearances for North End this season, in Carling Cup victories over Stockport and Bradford.
The Lilywhites are now hoping to send Wright out on loan.
Boss Darren Ferguson said: "The lad has done really well and we have all been happy with the progress that he has made.
"The natural step up now for Bailey is to be given a professional contract and the lad has deserved it.
"We are now keen to give Bailey more experience so we will be looking to get him out on loan to gather some first-team experience as he continues to develop as a player."