Guest blogs · International Nurses' Day

What is it like to be a Student Nurse in… Wales?


Emily (Emmy) Roberts

Student Nurse




Hello my name is Emily, I am currently in my first year of Adult Nursing training at The School of Healthcare Science, Bangor University. I started my training in September 2017, and hope to qualify in August 2020 so I will be training for a total of 3 years. Our first year of training begins with two months of theory and practical work based in university, this consist of a lot of different subjects and include both theory and practical sessions in which we are given the opportunity to learn some of the basic nursing skills such as making beds, bed bathing patients and hand hygiene to begin with, moving onto injection tequniques and basic life support training. We study three modules in our first year of training, two common modules and one field specific module. The common modules are the following; Healthcare practice, where we are taught about legislation and law, but also the importance of things such as empathy, respect and the process of reflection, and Anatomy and Physiology, we not only learn about a&p in this module we also have lessons on issues such as stress, vulnerability and other biopsychosocial issues. Our field specific module is Developing Adult Nursing, in this module we have most of our practical sessions giving us the skills we need to go out into clinical practice, these practical sessions are also accompanied by theoretical sessions in order for us to fully understand the tasks we are being taught to carry out and the importance and relevance of each of them. Following these few months of theory we then go out on a short introductory placement which lasts 3 weeks and aims to give an idea of what is expected of us as first year students and also to get us used to being in clinical settings. We then come back into university for two months (after a break for Christmas), this is the time when our three assignments are due in (one for each module) and we also have our two exams, Safemedicate and anatomy and physiology. We then have our big block of placements starting in March, one 10 week placement followed by an 11 week placement in which we begin to build our skills and learn from the healthcare professionals we are working with. I am currently over half way thorough my 10 week placement, I am learning so much and I will be sad to leave in a few weeks, although I am very excited to start my 11 week placement in a very different setting to the one I am currently in. I will hopefully be moving onto my second year this September. I feel that being a student nurse in Wales is a real pleasure. The staff in our school are amazing, we have fairly small cohorts in each field/year and our tutors and lecturers all know us by name and we are getting to know them very well. While on placement I love the bilingual environment, I am not a welsh speaker but staff and patients are really nice and I am currently working on improving my welsh language skills. Wales is a great place to live and work all the healthcare professionals I have worked with have been amazing and I am learning so much from each and every one of them. In addition to these things as student nurses in Wales we still receive the bursary, and this allows a little more financial security which we are very lucky to be able to claim. At the moment I am trying to figure out what my dream job may be, I have so far enjoyed all the clinical experiences I have had and I am very excited to see where my future placements will be. I know that I would like to go on in the years after I qualify and train as an Advanced Nurse Practitioner, and I am also keen to going into teaching when I am ready to move on from clinical work. But mainly I am just excited to see where my journey takes me and I am open to any opportunities which may present themselves to me in the future. I could not be prouder to be a student nurse studying at Bangor University. I am very much enjoying every aspect of my training (even the assignments), and I am very excited to see what the next two and a half years have to offer.


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