Virtual event helps prepare student nurses for new role
University of Wolverhampton Nursing Undergraduate degree & Master’s students have attended a virtual celebration to help prepare them for their new roles and to recognise their learning achievements during the challenges of the pandemic.
The ‘Student Nursing Virtual Event’, which was held on Zoom, was attended by inspirational speakers along with students and staff from the Institute of Health and was designed to help prepare students for their new roles as qualified nurses.
Speakers included Professor Laura Serrant OBE, Regional Head of Nursing and Midwifery (Health Education England, North East & Yorkshire), Dr Lucy Kelsall-Knight, Lecturer in Children’s Nursing (College of Medical and Dental Sciences), Paul Bytheway, Chief Operating Officer at Royal Stoke University Hospital (University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust), Professor Mark Radford, Chief Nurse at Health Education England, Liz Staples who specialises in Learning Disability Nursing and Clare Dickens, the University’s Senior Lecturer in Mental Health and University of Wolverhampton Health and Wellbeing Academic Lead and Independent Chair of Wolverhampton’s Suicide Prevention Stakeholder’s Forum
Abigail Vaughan, Nursing Graduate, said: “Attending the nursing virtual event made me hit reality at that point. To think I would be qualifying this year and remembering so clearly, my first day walking into campus. Highlighting our journey so far and to hear from a few inspirational speakers, was the cherry on the top of the whole degree.
“I feel very proud to be a part of the 218 cohort, fighting our way through this pandemic has been hard. From being deployed last year to a mental health ward, to now being on my last placement with the community LD nursing teams. It just goes to show that everything does work out in the end and our nursing future is bright ahead. Counting down for that nursing pin number now!”
Lorraine Diegnan, Senior Lecturer in Nursing at the University, said: “The virtual event was organised for our final year nursing students across all sites and all fields of nursing.
“Inspirational speakers were invited to address the key themes of resilience, support and leadership to support the transition of our final year students into their new roles as qualified nurses.
“It was also an event to celebrate the student’s success and a way to let them know how proud we are of them during the last 12 months working in practice during a global pandemic and keeping up with their academic studies.”
Rebecca Gladwin, newly qualified Nurse, said: "Attending the virtual nursing event was an amazing experience and allowed for students to meet inspirational members of the nursing community and hear about their journeys in nursing. Not only did we hear about their stories and experiences we were able to ask questions and share our feelings about our own journey.
"The day was well organised, and the speakers were all so welcoming and made me feel proud to be joining a worthwhile profession. During the event, the reality that I am on the last stretch of this course kicked in and that my own nursing journey is not that far away now!!
"Working during the pandemic has been a rollercoaster of emotions, some days have been hard, challenging, and emotional. Whereas other days have felt rewarding, proud to be part of a team and the experience is something that will stay with me."
Martin Bollard, Head of Nursing at the University, said: “This Virtual Event for our third year nurses was a wonderful opportunity for Wolverhampton students, soon to qualify, to hear from leaders across the different fields of nursing. The personal testimonies shared by the speakers, including Professor Mark Radford Chief Nurse HEE, provided a unique insight into the wonderful and diverse career pathways open to our graduate nurses. I hope this is an annual event.”
Lisa Mould, Head of Nursing at the University, said: “I was proud to attend such an inspirational conference, the speakers were so motivating and our third year students thoroughly enjoyed it. It was also great that all sites and fields of nursing came together for one event and hopefully this will be the first of many. I would also like to thank the organisers of the event for providing us all with a very professional and uplifting experience.”
Carol France, Senior Lecturer in Adult Nursing at the University, said: “An engaging and motivating event, which showed our nursing students the doors that a career in nursing opens. A wonderful opportunity to hear how nurses influence practice improvements.”
Anyone interested in studying in the Institute of Health should register for one of the University’s forthcoming Virtual Open Days.
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