I sat at the desk at my first uni and read the words “ failed exam board for extenuating circumstances”. My whole world for one year vanished, I left uni that day and put my student nurse hoody that I wore with such pride into the nearest bin. As I walked out I swore to myself that I would never go back into nursing. I had received no support when my first patient had died, with no training as to how to cope as an 18 year old.
So I can remember crying on the night shift and phoning my mum (a senior nurse) who talked to me for an hour. I received no support when I was accused of having a “mental health episode” in the on call room, where I went to cry after a crash call. I received little support when I couldn’t figure out how to write a 3000 word assignment on duty of care and instead spent weeks struggling. That was in 2011-2012, in a different university.
Fast forward to this university, City, University of London. After breaking my promise of never going back to nursing, I went to work as a health care support worker with the goal of gaining enough money for my ambulance technician training. Then I was supported and praised by staff and told everywhere I went that I should go back into nursing. I applied for the new nursing associate course and after some interviews and a lot of uncertainty I had been accepted. The difference between now and 2011? I have received nothing but amazing support from the university. From advice from lecturers regarding study methods to neurodiversity screening which showed I have dyslexia and dyspraxia; to mental health support and study sessions.
If you asked me back in 2011 would I ever go back into nursing I would have said no. But ask me now nearly 11 months down of my two year course and passing every single module so far, some with a high level of percentage, I would now answer with pride “now I might just make it” and that wouldn’t of happened without the support of all the City, University of London staff which has turned me from “the world’s most over enthusiastic health care support worker” to “a passionate student nurse associate”.