Fourteen sixth-form students have gained first-hand experience of what a career in medicine would be like from this year’s ‘Taste of medicine’ course, run by the Medical Specialist Group.
Eight students from Elizabeth College, Ladies’ College and Blanchlande College attended the one-week course in June followed by six students from the Sixth Form Centre in July.
The unique course is run twice a year to fit in with the different work experience weeks of the Colleges and the Sixth Form Centre. Students are paired up and over the course of the week, they attend ten different sessions covering specialities such as surgery, the emergency department, adult medicine, paediatrics, oncology, obstetrics and gynaecology and ophthalmology.
Course leader and consultant paediatrician Dr Clare Betteridge says, “We are very proud of this course which has inspired and supported dozens of young islanders over the years to successfully apply for medical school. There is no other course in the UK like it as far as I am aware in terms of the range of experience that we provide at no cost to the student.”
“These students are key to the future of healthcare on the island. We wish them every success in their medical careers, and we very much hope that ultimately they will come back and work with us on the island. We’re here to support them in any way we can during their journey into medicine.”
The six students from the Sixth Form Centre undertook the course from 11 – 15 July. Melissa Hunt age 16 said of the experience, “The most memorable part of my week was definitely having the privilege to witness a caesarean section. Being able to observe a baby being brought into the world is an experience I will never forget and it almost brought me to tears.”
17-year-old, Keira Bain said, “I learnt about the importance of communication between all the individual specialities, from GP to clinic to surgery, and how they need to work together to give the best patient care. I hope to study medicine at university and have an exciting, ever-learning career as a doctor.”
Elisabeth Gardiner, age 17, said, “I loved being in theatre and watching a knee replacement and several ENT operations. Seeing the prep for theatre as well as the operation was really interesting and the consultant talked us through what was happening at each point, this was really fascinating. Also seeing how well the recovery team worked together to keep the children as comfortable as possible was really good to see.”
18-year-old, Louis Thomas said, “I took part in the course because I had heard very positive feedback from friends and other students and wanted a breadth of experience in the different areas of the field of medicine. I am applying to study Medicine at various Universities this autumn, with the hope of one day becoming a surgeon.”
Georgia Cunningham Lomax, age 22, said, “I think I learned a lot about the value of teamwork in modern medicine. When we’re being treated, it’s very easy to imagine the one person you’re interacting with as the person who’s treating you, but on the course, I had the opportunity to peek behind the curtain and see the network of plans and meetings and consultations that hold medicine together.”
17-year-old, Thomas Rohland said “I took part in the course to see what all aspects of medicine were like and to get a better grasp on what is required for each field of medicine. My ambition for the future is to hopefully study medicine with the aim of going into surgery.”