Caring and compassionate people at the start of their careers have a wealth of opportunities on Teesside.
And there are courses for learners of all ages and abilities studying for qualifications in the health and care sector at Middlesbrough College.
With diverse pathways including youth work, nursing and social care, specialist training facilities and links with regional employers, Middlesbrough College is a great place to kick-start your career.
All courses include work experience placements in a variety of settings – including Sure Start and James Cook University Hospital.
Level 3 health students Sophie Presley and Lucy Coles did a seven-month placement working on an elderly ward.
The two students shadowed nursing staff working on the ward and provided much needed companionship to many of the patients.
The pair, who both have plans to follow a career in health, agreed the work placement helped them understand the different options available.
Sophie said: “It was great to get out on a work placement and lovely to meet the residents.
“I now feel prepared for university and have made loads of friends since studying here.”
Lucy added: “I enjoy how varied the course is. My favourite modules have included psychology and sociology, it’s very interesting.
“My favourite part of the course has been the placement; I’ve enjoyed building relationships with the long-term residents.”
Level 3 student Hollie Gilroy also plans to follow a career in healthcare after accepting an unconditional offer to study adult nursing at university.
She also received a £1,500 scholarship towards her degree – awarded to students who are expected to achieve triple distinction stars in their College courses, the highest possible grades.
Hollie said “I have found my course at College really rewarding and it has helped me decide to study nursing at University.
“My midwifery placement was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had.
“I would love to continue studying after my degree and become a qualified midwife.”
And it’s not just school leavers who could study for a career in health and care at Middlesbrough College.
Access courses are designed to prepare learners for university – and they’re ideal for career changers who may have been out of education for a long time or don’t have formal qualifications.
Sarah Clarke started a new career as an operating department practitioner after studying an Access to Health diploma.
After completing her course Sarah went on to study operating practice at university before landing her dream job supporting patients undergoing operations.
She explained: “I'd been out of education for a long time, so it was quite daunting coming back into college, but I very quickly settled into the rhythm of it all.
“The course definitely prepared me for university – I felt like I had a head start to my classmates who hadn't completed an Access course.”
Health and care students benefit from a range of opportunities to get practical skills – including in a fully-fitted healthcare ward at Middlesbrough College’s Middlehaven campus.
The state-of-the-art training facility gives learners the chance to get hands-on experience and fine tune their professional skills in areas such as infection control, first aid, resuscitation and communicating with patients.
Find out more about health and care courses at Middlesbrough College.