Image: Staff."It’s day 5 of my placement on the medicine ward; it's respiratory, that means it deals with people with all sorts of chest problems. I have been reading up at home on the different conditions, since starting placement, this week. There's a lot to take in but it's great. I have learnt how the ward works and listened to handovers at the beginning of each shift. I feel energised, but tired at the same time! Going to university was the best decision for me. I know it’s for three years, but there is more to learn than people think. I am glad I worked hard at my GCSEs so I could make the grade to get accepted for my training.

I have learnt from my last placement to try to balance home life with my placement, as I am still writing my assignment when not on duty. I need my assessment documents signed by my mentor on the ward, especially today when I administer my first injection. I have to achieve everything in my booklet to progress to my next placement. I work a full shift pattern, like all of the other nurses and healthcare support workers, of days and nights, including weekends. I have to work a 40 hour week, so having another job has to be flexible to fit round my training. There are certain hours and assignments you MUST do to pass the course.

I am one of the team. I help and get to know what different staff do within their role, helping patients to wash, to eat and drink and personal hygiene. But I also administer medications that only a trained nurse can do, under the strict supervision of a mentor. I also undertake activities that mainly the nurses do such as assessment, planning care, evaluation and liaising with the other professionals, again under direction from my mentor.

I may have to go and see proceduresor escort a patient, who may be frightened, for a scan, for example. I sometimes see things that might make me feel sick, or upset. But at the end of the day it’s the poor patient that’s going through it and that’s what you have to remember. I help my mentor with tasks that I am allowed to do as a student. That will help me get my booklet signed.

There are things that people don’t realise about nursing such as The Code of Conduct. As a nurse, that means abiding by this code in and out of work even on your days off……’s not hard; it’s just remembering things you can and cannot do. You have to think what it would be like for the patient if something was shared on Facebook with everybody…..I mean if it were you, how would you feel??

It’s all sinking in though, but I am working hard at this too. After all you only get out of things what you put in, and I love it so I am going to try my best!"

For more information see, and