University’s nursing department in running for top awards

The high standard of nursing education on offer at Swansea University has led to it being shortlisted for four honours at a prestigious national awards event.

Next month’s Student Nursing Times Awards sees the University’s Department of Nursing in the running for the Nurse Education Provider of the Year (Pre-registration) category - to the delight of Catherine Williams, Programme Director for Undergraduate Nursing.

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She said:  “We aim to treat our students as partners and they are involved in programme design, programme validation and even student selection events as they form part of the interview panels for prospective nurses.

“Our students make us who we are and we are very proud to have been shortlisted this year.”

One student’s commitment to tackling bullying has led to the department being shortlisted for the Mary Seacole Award for Outstanding Contribution to Diversity and Inclusion.

291 x 343The Stand Against Bullying campaign is led by Paige Connet White (left), who is a member of a steering group advising Bridgend Council on projects as well as working with the Welsh Government.

The submission highlighted the University’s commitment to creating a working and learning environment free from harassment and recognised the excellent work Swansea students are doing in the field of equality, diversity and inclusion.

Paige said: “The work I do is to support young people and hopefully make a difference to reduce bullying behaviour, educating others that bullying can have devastating consequences.

“It is a real honour to be shortlisted and hope it will raise the profile of the project and encourage others to make a difference.”

Another Swansea student who caught the shortlisting panel’s eye was Mitchell Richards who is hoping to pick up the Most Inspirational Student Nurse of the Year title.

‌Since joining the programme in 2016 he has dedicated himself to ensuring his student body has a better understanding of how to care for patients with learning disabilities. He is now working towards gathering 5,000 signatures for a petition to make learning disability training mandatory for all health care workers.‌‌‌

Mitchell Richards 3Mitchell, who was nominated by Catherine Williams, said: “I have a huge passion for change in the learning disability world and I will never stop until vital changes are made for equality and diversity, not just in healthcare but in society itself. 

“I really did not expect any recognition. To get this far and to be shortlisted is such a massive achievement and through this, I hope awareness will be raised. “

Catherine added: “We now offer teaching sessions and workshops to help students’ understanding of issues faced by people with a learning disability. Our pledge is to train students across all fields of nursing to be learning disability champions and help change attitudes.”

The University is also hoping to take home the award for Partnership of the Year for its collaboration with ABMU Health Board at the Caswell Clinic medium secure service at Glanrhyd Hospital. This partnership has led to the creation and development of a Contemporary Issues in Forensic Healthcare module.

Staff at the 61-bed clinic - including Allied Health Professionals - can now benefit from the training the module provides. Hosted by staff from both the Clinic and the University, it allows for learning to be based in the actual clinical environment as well as the campus with its access to academic support.

The Student Nursing Times Awards, being held this year on April 26 at the Grosvenor House Hotel, aim to celebrate and support the achievements of the student nursing community across the UK.