Being a Paramedic Science student
Charli Dean-Grainger tells us about her time studying on our Paramedic Science BSc(Hons):
How did you make your choice?
I chose Brighton because I have always loved the city and personally, I think it’s just as important to like the place you will be living as the course you will be studying.
I struggled to decide on the course I wanted to study as I was stuck between two very different subjects- fine art and paramedic science. Through a lot of research and countless open days talking to current students on both courses I eventually decided on paramedic science and I’m so glad I did!
What do you like about your course?
The paramedic course at Brighton is slightly different to some other unis offering the same course in the way that the run their ambulance placements. Many unis I considered ran block placements where you spend a couple months on the road and then return to uni for a couple months, however I was drawn to Brighton because they run weekly placements all the way through the year with us in university learning the theory and clinical skills one or two days a week and then doing 24 hours worth of ambulance shifts each week.
Personally, I prefer this method as I can learn a skill and have it fresh in my mind to practice it on the road that week.
The course also offers a range of non-ambulance placements such as a week in the Emergency Department working alongside doctors and nurses, Paediatric wards, Maternity and Operating theatre to help develop your learning by learning from specialists in each field.
On the course we are assessed in a couple different ways, primarily we have OSCE exams which are a practical exams done in simulation, a couple essays (but nothing too long), VIVAs which are a question and answer session, and then we also have a book of clinical skills to complete in out ambulance placement each year. This provides a really diverse way of learning to suit most people!
Due to the current climate we have been doing blended learning which has its ups and downs but in general due to the practical nature of our course we have got a lot luckier than some with in person practice sessions and clinical skills days still running and theory lectures being moved online. I have found that a benefit of this is that the lectures are now recorded meaning I can go back and re-watch parts I struggled with.
What is Brighton student life like?
Brighton is a beautiful city with loads to do, I mean who wouldn’t want the beach right on your doorstep especially in summer! There are also loads of amazing cafes and restaurants especially if you’re vegetarian or vegan you’ll have no trouble finding something you like. If you like to go for walks there are amazing places such as wild park, Brighton racecourse or of course the beach front.
I chose to live in private housing instead of halls my first year, it is weird living with eight strangers in a new city but my advice would be to not limit yourself that circle, go out and make friends. When you do find your flatmates make a group chat and ask what everyone is bringing, trust me you don’t need six toastie machines in one house.
Another thing I recommend is not bringing a whole family sized set of plates and bowls, you will just end up waiting until they’re are all dirty to wash them and it’ll be a lot!! I think my favourite thing about independent living is being able to have full choice over what I get to eat every day and getting more confident in cooking than ever (presto pasta gets boring after a while). I would definitely suggest learning a few quick recipes before you arrive, I had a flatmate in first year who tried to cook pasta in a frying pan without any water at all and set off the fire alarms!
Alongside my studies I also am a member of the trampolining society which is great fun and has all range of abilities from pros to people who haven’t set foot on one since they were a kid. I definitely recommend joining a society it’s a brilliant way to make friends and take your mind away from work sometimes.
What are your plans after the course?
My plans after completing the course are to work as a paramedic for a couple of years and then probably move on to a master’s degree with the hopes of becoming a critical care paramedic.
I feel like I’ve changed a lot since being at university, I feel more confident in myself and have really grown into my own skin a lot in the past year and a half and I really think that is influenced by the freedom of self-expression in Brighton.