Work Placements : Charlie

Multiple Work Placement case study – Charlie

As a medical school applicant work placements have been a valuable component of the curriculum here at Scott College.

I’ve undertaken three in my time here, two at University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust and one with the Peninsula Medical School.

In my first placement with the hospital I volunteered on a Minor Stroke and Neurology ward, this was my first experience in a patient-facing environment and massively helped in improving the content of my personal statement and knowledge level in my Biology and Psychology lessons.

The second was also at Derriford, for one week, we had the opportunity to go into theatres and observe a variety of procedures including a cardiac bypass and prostatectomy. We were also able to observe rounds on a severe Neurological Injury ward and to go into the Emergency Department for a day and lots more.

There were two key moments in these placements that really stuck with me, the first was watching the cardiac surgery and seeing a man’s heart beating within his chest as a surgeon skilfully worked on bypassing coronary arteries that could no longer suffice. The second was in the ED when the doctor I was shadowing was able to tell a patient that she would be able to receive better care than that which she was already receiving and that it would be more specialised.

Both these experiences helped to prepare me for medical applications because they demonstrated the variety of roles within the NHS and the importance of each role both individually and as a part of a functioning team as well as highlighting to universities that I already have a base level of knowledge and experience.

My final work placement was at the university which gave us a taste of what it was like to be a first year medical student and was lead by the upper years. Here we learnt about history taking, medical examinations, tests and were able to use their simulation rooms.

All of these experiences will be available to aspiring medics with the Peninsula Pathways Programme, something I would highly recommend for future medics, and through the placement coordinator at Derriford Hospital. These are opportunities that should be taken advantage of  as they provide invaluable insight to the medical professions you may be a part of and will massively improve your university applications and interviews.


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