Making a difference through nursing after my Manchester degree

For BNurs Adult Nursing graduate and lifelong Mancunian Adam Mellor, ensuring the people of Manchester have access to the very best healthcare services has always been his greatest ambition. Here, he talks about studying at Manchester, his job on a busy surgical assessment ward at Stepping Hill Hospital, and what it has been like to be a nurse during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Why I chose Manchester for my nursing course

When I visited the universities around Manchester and down south when choosing where to study, what really stood out to me about Manchester was the incredible expertise of the staff, and the fact the University is full of leading researchers, which is so impressive.

Nursing graduate Adam Mellor.

The University doesn’t just equip you with academic knowledge; it also offers a fantastic range of workshops and courses throughout your studies to arm you with real-life, practical experience that you can apply to real scenarios.

The University has such an enormous impact, not just here in Manchester, but globally, and I knew I wanted to be a part of that from the moment I attended their induction day. I just fell in love with the University, the course, everything.

My Manchester experience

I felt so welcome from the offset. I didn’t just feel like a college student; I felt like I was already a part of the University before I even received my offer.

The expertise of everyone at Manchester, from the tutors to the incredible researchers is amazing, and they were trying to encourage me to develop my existing knowledge before I even came to the University.

From day one, everybody at the University was invested in me, my chosen career and my future, and they opened my mind to so many areas that I hadn’t even considered before. It was so incredible to have so much support from the academics from the outset.

The University gave me an opportunity to gain the degree I had longed for, but they haven’t just given me a great job; they have given me great employability, too. They open the doors to so many incredible opportunities and give you access to so many specialities.

Nursing graduate Adam Mellor at the University.

Highlights of my time at Manchester

We did an Ethical Grand Challenges course as part of the Stellify programme, which ran across three years, and so many workshops and online activities that arm you with real-life wisdom to apply to real-life scenarios.

One thing that really stood out to me was the workplace ethics workshop, which covered things like unconscious bias, and I have really reflected back onto that and ensured I incorporate what I have learned into my everyday practice.

You get so much more than just academic education at the University. They support you in a way that really reaffirms your self-belief in your ability to do what you’re doing.

My time at the University has been an incredibly positive experience. A big spirit of Manchester is to push yourself, to accept yourself, embrace challenges and jump out of your comfort zone. If you do that at Manchester, you really will succeed.

Nursing during the pandemic

I currently work on a surgical assessment ward, where we get patients from A&E, GP referrals, 111 calls and even patients sent to us directly from other wards, so we see people in very vulnerable states.

Nursing graduate Adam Mellor.

Whenever you take care of somebody, you have it in the forefront of your mind that your patient is somebody’s loved one, somebody’s family member, and you’re making a difference to more than just your patient’s life.

Throughout the pandemic, that was more important than ever, because families struggled to actually see their loved ones in hospital, and therefore, it was all the more important for us to provide emotional support and communicate properly over the phone, to reassure people their loved ones were safe and receiving plenty of love and care.

It can be unfamiliar and frightening to come into hospital, especially during the pandemic when we had to start wearing visors, masks and gowns. There was a lot of fear built up for patients, and it really reiterated how much of a support network we are, as medical professionals.

We’re here to provide care, compassion and reassurance, and to listen to people’s worries and anxieties and provide the support they need. We’re here as advocates for patients, and here to support them wholeheartedly at a very difficult time.

We can make such a difference to their lives, and it makes me so very proud to be able to do that for a living. It’s so important for me to be making that positive difference, my job is so rewarding and I feel so lucky to have been able to pursue a career that was always a dream for me, thanks to The University of Manchester.

I hope that my journey will inspire others to consider a career in nursing, and to pursue it through the University. I also hope it can raise awareness of the incredible healthcare services available in and around the city, because so many people aren’t aware of the services available to them.

Hear more from Adam in our YouTube video and learn more about nursing, midwifery and social work courses at Manchester.

This post is an edited version of an article that originally appeared on the Manchester Evening News website.

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