Robyn Midwinter Graduates with Foundation Science Degree in Veterinary Nursing

Following two years of study and a year’s work placement, Robyn Midwinter of Half Tree Hollow has graduated with a Foundation Science Degree (FdSc) in Veterinary Nursing with Merit from Harper Adams University in the UK.

During her first year of studies, Robyn had to complete all the basic Veterinary modules including Anatomy and Physiology, Companion Animal Management and Large Animal Management. The latter two modules involved handling and caring for a wide range of species and being assessed on these skills. During her second year, Robyn focussed more on Animal Health, Nursing skills, Anaesthesia & Surgery, Animal Medications and Clinical Practice. There was a large number of practical sessions across all these modules.

Robyn’s work placement at a Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) accredited training practice within the UK saw her work at a small Animal Veterinary Hospital in Gloucestershire with a team of 13 Vets, 14 registered Veterinary Nurses, five student Nurses and eight Receptionists in a busy environment, dealing with a variety of caseloads.

Robyn commented:

“My time on placement was the most interesting and rewarding experience as I got to put into practice all the information and skills I had been taught at University, whilst learning from and working with an amazingly talented and knowledgeable team of professionals. During this time, I had to complete a Nursing Progress Log (NPL); an electronic skills list designed and reviewed by the RCVS to support a process of clinical mentorship and learning in addition to recording competent achievement for Vet Nurses. The NPL contained many skills ranging from Laboratory Techniques, Diagnostic Imaging, Nursing Care, Client Communication, Dispensing Drugs, Theatre Practice, Anaesthesia and Infection Control.”

 In her final year of studies, Robyn had to complete the NPL and pass the Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCE). The OSCE are overseen by the RCVS and involve several clinical tasks being performed and examined for correct procedure. Passing these two components allowed Robyn to gain her registration as a qualified Registered Veterinary Nurse on the RCVS register.

Robyn added:

“Being on an FdSc course, I also had to complete a ‘mini dissertation’ for which I received a Distinction. For my Professional Research Project, I investigated client awareness of the risk and benefits associated with neutering in canine patients. I found this research area very interesting as the full list of risks and benefits are not always fully explained to clients, and the internet contains such a wide range of information that is not always relevant or true.”

Since completing her studies, Robyn has continued working at the Animal Veterinary Hospital in Gloucestershire to build and expand on her skills and confidence in the various areas of veterinary nursing.

Robyn concluded:

“Being a Veterinary Nurse is challenging, magical, emotional, amazing and heart-breaking. It’s not just a job and it’s not a money maker, it’s a lot of hard work, with often very little appreciation. It’s not cuddling puppies and kittens all day. Every single day is different and unpredictable.

“I would like to extend my thanks to everyone involved with the Scholarship process that gave me the opportunity to embark on the amazing adventure of attending University in the UK, and would encourage anyone contemplating further education overseas to grasp the opportunity.”

Director of Education & Employment, Wendy Benjamin, commented:

On behalf of the Education & Employment Directorate and the Scholarship Awards Committee I would like to extend congratulations to Robyn on her achievement and we wish her well in her career in Veterinary Nursing.”

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17 October 2019

St Helena Government Communications Hub

Telephone: 22470