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Lenka in nurse uniform

I chose Brighton because nursing is my dream job!

Since I was a child, I was always attracted to and fascinated by healthcare. I loved hospitals and medical terminology and I admired everybody working in that field. My life journey though took me elsewhere and I became a language teacher instead. However, reconsidering my career options during a long maternity break, I was drawn back to the medical field.

I decided to become an NHS volunteer then I got a job as a healthcare assistant at the Alex, the children’s hospital in Brighton. By then I was in love with nursing, and I knew with certainty that I wanted to become a nurse. Since I loved working with children as a teacher and I was now a mum myself, I opted for the child field.

Getting an offer at Brighton

I applied for child nursing course at Brighton even though I knew that the competition for places was tough. I was nearly 46 then, I had a five-year-old, and my brain was going into cardiac arrest quite frequently because perimenopause was knocking on my door. However, I decided to go against the odds and when I was accepted on the course I was over the moon. My long-life ambition was finally happening even though I knew there would be a very bumpy road ahead.

The day I was starting my first lectures, my daughter was starting primary school. The never-ending anxiety of being neither the perfect mum nor the perfect student kicked in immediately and I had to learn to live with it. However, I never regretted this decision and never looked back because I loved the course since the first day.

Placement opportunities

It was hard at first getting used to studying again while also looking after my family. But it was all worth it and even though writing assignments is daunting, I love my placements. In fact, I have yet to meet a student on my course who does not love being on placement. Since placements constitute 50% of the course, this is quite important. Brighton University has excellent links with local healthcare services and provide us students with a variety of placements in both acute and community settings that give us fantastic opportunities for interdisciplinary learning. It also shows us different areas of nursing and all the possibilities that are there for us when we qualify.

The future is bright!

Once we graduate, we will all be eligible to apply for registration as nurses with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) and entitled to practice anywhere in the UK. The best thing about this course apart from being interesting and inspiring is that I feel I can easily walk into a job straight after graduating. The career prospects in nursing are endless and it is only up to you which path you choose to take.

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Lenka Huntley • 17th June 2021


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