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Undergraduate study

Our students

Charlie Crichton

Charlie Crichton

BSc (Hons) Nursing Studies (Adult)

I love meeting new people and I've got an unrelenting need to be helpful, so nursing is the perfect profession for me.

What made you want to become a nurse?

It's a long story! I was in the military for 10 years and did several tours overseas. A lot of the work I did was trauma-based, so while it involved saving lives it also meant I didn't get the chance to see the full patient journey.

I love meeting new people and I've got an unrelenting need to be helpful, so nursing is the perfect profession for me.

What do you most enjoy about your course?

As a mature student with a child, I thought the age difference between the students might be a problem when I first started, but it wasn't at all.

We all had a common interest and that created an instant bond between us. The best thing about the course is the support you get from your friends - we know we can rely on each other.

Why did you volunteer to go into clinical practice early?

I was always going to say yes when they asked me because it's my job, but it was still a big decision to make.

Going into the NHS, under these circumstances, was an incredible learning experience and a perfect chance to help in the best way I can.

I discussed it with my partner (he's ex-military too so understands the situation) and we talked about the risk of infection, and the mental health implications of me possibly having to self-isolate away from him and my little girl.

He understood where I was coming from and was on board with it straight away, he's very proud and would have done the same.

Do you have a message for your fellow nursing students?

Support each other - it's a unique time in our country's history and it’s good to know you did all you could to help people in need.

Look after your mental health and remember to always be kind and stay positive, no matter how bad your situation, there is always someone else worse off.

What are you doing now?

During the first wave of Covid-19 I worked as an aspirant nurse on Ainderby Ward at the Friarage Hospital in Northallerton. I qualified in September 2020, and I continued to work there as a band 5 nurse. I was on placement there as part of my course and they’re the best team of people I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with.

During the second wave of Covid-19, I volunteered to work within the critical care department at James Cook University Hospital as a category B nurse (untrained critical care nurse). I learned multiple new skills and was asked to stay there for a few extra months to complete my enhanced care competencies. This is a great opportunity as once completed I will be able to utilise my new skills on Ainderby Ward and benefit the patients under my care.

Working through the pandemic has been gruelling, but it has given me so many opportunities to grow and develop. It has 100% solidified my learning from Teesside University.