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Military nurse in training

Alex’s University Update


Well a lot has happened in the last few weeks and I don’t know where the time has gone!


My lectures at the Defence School of Health Care Studies are going well and have included Physiology, Ethics and a range of hands on, practical skills that nurses carry out. For example, we had a practical session on ‘Injections’ on Monday morning this week. It was really interesting but using oranges to practice on is undoubtedly a lot easier than injecting people. I told mum about this and it would seem nothing has changed as she learnt to give injections by practising with oranges too in 1982! I now look forward to putting this skill into practice on a real person and will try to do so confidently as if it is quite natural for me.


As well as the University demands, we are also required to attend two physical training sessions per week, which are run by PTIs (Physical Training Instructors). These are weirdly quite enjoyable and nothing like those we had to do on basic training at Halton. Although, that being said, I would love it if there were more games or sports. We also have to do 3 additional fitness sessions each week. These can be anything we want to do. Having studied classical ballet to Grade6, I have been looking to join a ballet class, but unfortunately I can’t find any nearby. So I’ve been doing some runs and going to the gym. We have to log all exercise we complete on a computer in the gym. It’s quite a clever little system! You have a key fob, which when in the gym you plug into each piece of equipment you use and it records your workout. When you log out of the main system at the end – it shows you the entire workout. The only thing is you can’t cheat and pretend you’ve been in… (Not that I would ever do that anyway of course!).


We also have Military classes every Wednesday afternoon which keep us topped up in our Military and Service knowledge. It’s very exciting really as it’s the only time we all get to wear our uniform.


The other people in my cohort are really great. There are 3 men, two of which are moving into family accommodation soon, so we won’t be able to just pop over and say hello anymore (or get lifts into University). One of the girls is pretty keen on swimming and so we’re planning on trying to go to a pool once a week at least. It’s a slightly different (and more fun) way of getting some exercise into the week.


The best bit so far is definitely having my own space. I think I’m rather a quiet person, and so it’s great that I can just sit by myself and read, study or procrastinate. But then it’s also brilliant that I can walk out of my door and there are 4 other people in my flat. The girls who I first started training with are not far away and there’s a bar/cafe on campus where we catch up quite a lot.


Anyway, I’m heading off to cook Fajitas for some of the girls. But just a quick last note…did anyone see me in the Richmond & Twickenham Times or the RAF News? With a photograph of me with my Grandmother and Mother at the Royal Star & Garter Home in Richmond? It was lovely that the press were interested in my story and great to get the word out about the brilliant work The Royal Star & Garter Homes do. My Gran was also quite chuffed to be in a newspaper with her daughter and granddaughter 🙂



AC Alex