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Northumbria student nurses nominated for national awards

Thursday, 03 July, 2014
Northumbria student nurses nominated for national awards

Two student nurses at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust are in the running for national nursing awards.

Student Ben Swinney and community staff nurse Michelle Mitchell, have both been shortlisted for the ‘Student Nursing Times Awards 2014’. Both studied state nursing courses at Northumbria University and trained with Northumbria Healthcare and have been described by their colleagues as assets to the organisation and the profession.

Ben Swinney, 24, from Ashington, was nominated by Northumbria Healthcare for ‘Student Nurse of the Year: Adult’ following excellent feedback about his caring approach to patients and relatives. Ben has worked in various placements throughout the trust and is currently undertaking his final one in A&E at Wansbeck General Hospital before qualifying in September.

Ben said: “The teaching programme at Northumbria Healthcare has allowed me to learn from and work alongside experienced and talented nurses on a daily basis. This experience has been invaluable and I am grateful to have been given such an extraordinary introduction to nursing.

“It’s fantastic to have been nominated by my mentors at Northumbria for this prestigious award and I look forward to qualifying.”

Michelle is shortlisted for ‘Most Inspirational Student Nurse of the Year’. The 45-year-old worked as a healthcare assistant in hospitals and the community for 15 years before studying to become a nurse. She graduated in March last year and is now based at Whitley Bay health centre.

She is helping to inspire the next generation of nurses through her role as learning leader at Northumbria University supporting student nurses with clinical and academic practice.

Michelle, from West Allotment, said: “I’m delighted and humbled to be nominated for the award by my tutor, staff I work with and the students I mentor.

“I enjoy sharing my knowledge and helping others and I don’t see it as out of the ordinary. To be considered to be inspirational is a real honour and I feel very privileged just to be nominated.”

At her graduation, she was also awarded the prestigious Heath Medal, which recognises exceptional clinical and academic excellence in nurse training.

Rosemary Stephenson, director of nursing at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “At Northumbria Healthcare we are passionate about helping to mentor and support the next generation of nurses to work in hospitals and the community and we are delighted that two of our students have been recognised nationally.

“Ben and Michelle have been exceptional students throughout their training demonstrating the utmost compassion and empathy while caring for their patients and a willingness to learn.

“The nominations are testament to their hard work and dedication to the nursing profession and we wish them well in their careers.”

There has been a record number of entries for this year’s awards which recognise student nurses who go the extra mile. The award winners are announced on 1 May.