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Successful NHS careers showcase attracts hundreds of potential employees

Posted: 20 January 2023

An NHS careers event hosted by West Nottinghamshire College looks set to become a regular event following its huge success.

The Step into the NHS event, organised by Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, West Nottinghamshire College and Nottingham Trent University showcased the wide range of opportunities available in the NHS.

More than 650 people attended the event, which took place on Tuesday 17 January at the college’s Derby Road campus, could find out about the various career paths, apprenticeship opportunities and how to enrol at the university’s Mansfield-based campus.

There were interactive displays by operating theatre, paediatric and maternity teams as well as dietetic, physiotherapy, orthotic and ophthalmology departments.

Visitors could watch demonstrations and use mannequins and real equipment to get hands-on experience of CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), putting a breathing tube through a patient's mouth into their airway (intubation) and placing a feeding tube into a baby’s stomach through their nose. 

Health and social care student Freya Scott, 16, said: “I thought I wanted to be a midwife but before today I didn’t have enough information to be sure. Speaking to a midwife about what the role involves and using mannequins to have a go at delivering a baby has made me realise that this is definitely what I want to do.”

As well as medical and nursing roles, there was lots of information on roles in research, human resources, IT, customer service and administration – among many more.  

Staff from the university were on hand to discuss entry requirements for enrolling onto qualifications, including adult nursing and mental health nursing degrees, nursing associate apprenticeships, ambulance technician certificates, the paramedic degree and more.

Visitors had the chance to have a tour of NTU’s nursing facilities, including a training ward with up-to-date equipment which is used in a hospital setting.

Teachers from the college provided advice on a range of apprenticeships, health and social care courses and the Access to Nursing programme, which can be studied before attending university.

The adult and community team as well as the electrical, plumbing and joinery teachers were in attendance for individuals considering working within the estates and facilities side of the health service.

Trainee Nursing Associate Harriet Hanson, who is doing an apprenticeship at King’s Mill Hospital, in conjunction with Nottingham Trent University, was on hand to talk about how university isn’t the only option.

Harriet said: “Many people I spoke to were really surprised to hear that you don’t need to go to university. I’ve gained so much knowledge and so many skills from hands-on experience working in the hospital that I wouldn’t have got in the classroom. I can’t think of anything else I’d rather be doing, and I’d recommend it to anyone.”

Rob Simcox, Director of People at Sherwood Forest Hospitals who oversees the Trust’s recruitment efforts, said: “The aim of the event was to show that no matter what you achieve in your education, we have a wide range of pathways into meaningful work in your local NHS. Running a hospital requires a lot of people with a lot of skills – not just nurses and doctors, but porters, cleaners, caterers, scientists, administrators and researchers to name just a few.

“It was fantastic to see so many people at the event who were interested in what the Trust, college and university can offer. As a result of the positive feedback, we’ll definitely explore the possibility of holding similar events in the future.”

Principal and chief executive of West Nottinghamshire College, Andrew Cropley, said: “It was thrilling to be part of our NHS Careers event. Seeing so many people learning about the opportunities that the hospital has available and then exploring with NTU and ourselves how they could develop the skills they would need was hugely rewarding. 

“This event exemplifies what we can achieve through constructive partnerships and I look forward to seeing further opportunities emerge over the coming months and years.”

Sarah Mayfield, Director of Nottingham Trent University’s Mansfield Hub, said: “We were delighted to see so many people interested in a career in the NHS. It was rewarding to be able to suggest options that many hadn’t realised were available to them, and also to demonstrate to people looking for a non-medical career that the NHS could be an option too. We also got the chance to catch up with some of our graduates who are now enjoying employment within the local hospital, and hope to be helping many more in the future.

“For anyone that wasn’t able to attend, or have further questions, we encourage them to get in touch with us, we’d be happy to chat to them about their options or arrange a visit to our Hub.”

For information on current job vacancies at the Trust, visit https://www.sfh-tr.nhs.uk/work-for-us/our-vacancies/

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