Sian commenced her degree programme in Midwifery at the College of Human and Health Sciences in 2013 and has been achieving high academic grades as well as excellent grades and feedback from her mentors whilst on clinical placements. Sian inspires many people in many different ways but for the purpose of this initiative I would like to focus on how she has inspired me, her personal tutor, with her courage.
A little while ago Sian volunteered to support the midwifery teaching team in a new initiative of peer-led teaching. It was all arranged fairly last minute and, as expected, Sian agreed to participate in our experiment. With no notice and in front of a crowd of strange onlookers I put Sian on the spot. I asked her to demonstrate resuscitating a new born baby to a large group of final year paramedic students. I knew I was challenging Sian; it was an intimidating task and I suspect that many students in her position would have thanked me kindly and declined my offer. But without batting an eyelid she got on with it and performed an inspiring and faultless practice demonstration. I was almost speechless. Not only was she able to show her peers how to correctly perform this complex intervention, she also took the time to explain the theoretical rationale underpinning everything she did.
This is the kind of person Sian is; always willing to go above beyond to help others and I know this is reflected in her relationships with her mentors in practice and the women she cares for. Her last mentor, a senior midwife with nearly 20 years’ experience of working with students, commented on her exceptional positive attitude, ability to integrate into a diverse team of clinicians and a willingness to embrace change and challenge.