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'My passion and enthusiasm for learning disability nursing has driven me through'

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As she starts second year, Amy looks back on the year just gone and reflects on how her feelings towards the course have changed as her confidence developed

Amy Wixey-SNT

What have I let myself in for?

This was the question I asked myself as I walked through those doors on my first day of uni. Enrolment, applying for student finance and accommodation had already overwhelmed me.

The same thoughts kept going round my head: will I make new friends? Have I enough experience? Can I actually do this?

I was overwhelmingly anxious walking into a brand new place with my new peers, some of which already knew each other, and little old me from Wales not knowing anyone around me.

On my first day I thought I would try and get to know as many people as I could, after all we were all in the same boat here whether we were 18 or 45! At the end of the day we all had a something in common that we could talk about: why we wanted to become nurses of the future.

I feel so lucky as on my first week I sat next to my now best friends. I can’t imagine going through this course without their support, through ups and down during the course and in my personal life.

The opportunities that I have been given as a student nurse have been fantastic. I’ve acted as advocate for my cohort as a student representative to make sure everyone’s opinions are valued and listened to. I became a care maker, which allowed me to attend open days at my local trust, speak to other student nurses about their experiences, and meet the director of nursing and the matrons at my local trust.

I also have an incredibly rewarding part time job with a fantastic company, which has helped me throughout university and made me realise “Yes, Amy, you can do this”.

To all new student nurses

The next three years are going to be the most difficult, exciting, positive and overwhelming experience you’ve ever had. If ever feel this isn’t for you, please just keep on pushing through and you’ll get there sooner than you think.

This journey is a fantastic one, I’m so grateful for everything it has given me and hopefully you’ll soon feel the same way too - if you don’t already.

Anytime doubts have run through my head about whether I can do this my passion and enthusiasm about learning disability nursing has always driven me through. I’m so glad I’ve joined this wonderful profession and as I ready myself to enter a new term all I can say is bring on year 2!


Amy Wixey is in her 2nd year studying learning disability nursing at University of Chester

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