February 1, 2022, by hayleychipman

Get to know our School Interns!

An image of the internsWelcome to our blog and thank you for being here.

Who are we?

We are the first pair of interns hired by the University of Nottingham School of Health Sciences.

How did we get here?

The role was advertised to all second-year health sciences students (Nursing, Midwifery, Physiotherapy and Sports Rehabilitation). We were both selected from the adult nursing course at the end of our second year.

What are we doing?

For 12 months we are working as salaried staff members! The idea is for us to participate in, and learn about, the day-to-day running of the health sciences school. Our job description includes assisting in teaching, research and self-directing a student experience project!

We will go back to finish our degrees after the 12-month internship term is complete.

This blog is intended to share our experiences for the benefit of other students and future interns. There are many different aspects to the internship and we hope that each month we will discuss one of these areas.

We think it’s great that the university has started to offer this programme and, by sharing our knowledge and experience on this blog, we hope to spread out the benefit of the internship with others.

So, let’s get started. To begin with we would like to briefly explore some of the reasons the internship was created. As the first ever Dean’s interns with Health Sciences, we’ve been very interested in how this opportunity came about!

Why did it come about?

There is a national shortage of academics in many health professions. The shortage of nurses in practice is common knowledge but did you know there’s also a shortage of teachers in nursing, midwifery and other health professional courses too?

It’s been absolutely fascinating to work alongside the academic staff in the first two months of our internship. It’s certainly been incredibly eye opening to consider how much is going on behind the scenes. It’s understandably hard to get a perspective on this as a student as we’re so focused on getting to grips with our placement assignments, professional expectations and integrating these values. Yet, behind the scenes, so much fascinating research and strategizing is going on to get us out in to practice.

Centring the student voice is something that is constantly mentioned in staff meetings and we’re yet to meet a member of staff that isn’t truly passionate about using the resources available to them to provide Health Sciences students with the best possible experience.

Improving the student experience is not without its challenges. In 2021, the dropout rate of student nurses leapt from 21% to 33% (Nursing Standard, 2021) yet nursing remains one of the most valued and well-respected professions in society… how can we protect Health Sciences’ students? Ensure they have the education they deserve? We think all students would agree with us that the University of Nottingham’s School of Health Sciences needs to keep improving the experience of students and be informed enough to advocate on their behalf. This is how we view our role as interns and its one we hope to demonstrate we are taking seriously.

We hope we can continue to explore how students and staff relate to one another and grow as advocates for the best possible student experience.

Watch this space!

Posted in Student profiles