That first day arriving at university was daunting, like the first day at school, new bag, new pens and pencil case, new stationery and looking like a rabbit in the headlights.
A varied bunch…
What was lovely is that our group had 23 people, so not too difficult to get to know everyone and we all have midwifery in common, so a good conversation starter! The group varied from those straight from school to a grandmother of 55. Everyone got on so well together. We also had one study day a week while we were on placement, so we were able to meet up and discuss how we were all getting on.
Getting the brain into gear…
The first year of university is a recap of biology and embryology. The essays try and get you back into the swing of writing and learning how to reference properly! We went into the hospital within the first month of being a university, we had learnt how to take blood and how to do a blood pressure, the rest was up to our mentors.
Out on the ‘shop floor’
Luckily I had such a wonderful mentor, very patient and had a good balance of working in the hospital, community and having an antenatal clinic in a doctor’s surgery. I didn’t have any problem talking to women and their families, but was surprisingly cack-handed when it came to blood taking, so it took a while to get my confidence up.
It made writing the essay easier once we were on placement learning how to be a midwife, as we could start to put theory and practice together.
The first year goes very quickly, considering the first time in the hospital was November, I delivered the first baby in January, such an amazing moment that I will never forget, like most student midwives at their first birth.. I cried!
I would say that it was quite a learning curve to balance study with working. I felt really well supported throughout the whole year though and having all your classmates to encourage each other was really important.