Adrienne is a first year student midwife and mother from Scotland. She is yet to start her practice placement, but gives an insight into applying for midwifery and what the course has been like so far!
1.Tell me about you, where you are from and what year you are in.
My name is Adrienne Dye, I am a first year student midwife at Robert Gordon University on the north-east coast of Scotland.
2. Why did you decide you wanted to become a midwife?
Midwifery wasn’t honestly something I had given any thought to when I was younger. I am qualified in early education and childcare and worked for years as an early years practitioner in private nurseries. My midwifery “light bulb moment” came when I misscarried my first baby. The midwife who looked after me was so caring. I have since had two children and my interest in the career grew with each child and i learned more about what was involved. I just knew this was what I wanted to do.
3. How was the admissions process? Did you do any preparation before you applied? What was the process for writing a personal statement like?
As soon as I knew I wanted to be a midwife, I started researching what i needed to, what qualifications I needed and how my family would be impacted. I phoned up SAAS (student Award Agency Scotland) as I needed to know if the course would be funded, if the course wasn’t going to be paid for then I would have fallen at the first hurdle as I could never have afforded the fees. I have a young family so I also needed to make sure I had some income, we are very fortunate in Scotland that we get the nursing and midwifery bursary from the government to help with the costs of living. I already had the qualifications from school that I needed to get in so I knew I could apply for direct entry. I attended an “insight into midwifery” day at the teaching hospital in the nearest city that was run by the university, as well as a university open day on campus to meet the lecturers and look round the facilities. I must have rewritten my personal statement 7 times and had different people proof read it every time to make sure it was perfect. I directed my personal statement directly at midwifery and I was only applying to the one university. I submitted my application through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service) in December and was given an interview in February. It was a group interview and very nerve wracking, even though the people giving the interview were lovely. I was offered a place in April and was over the moon!
4. What has been the highlight of your time so far?
I have really enjoyed learning the anatomy and physiology side of things, so much i didn’t know about how our bodies work! It is fascinating.
5. What have you not liked so much?
Referencing! Harvard referencing is not something I have ever done before so learning how to do it to support my essays has been a challenge, I have to spend ages making sure they are in the correct format.
6. Tell me 3 qualities that make an excellent midwife
I believe a midwife needs to be caring, honest and non-judgemental. If a midwife doesn’t care then they should not be doing the job, a woman needs to know that her midwife is doing their best, to build a trusting relationship at this important stage of a woman’s life. The midwife needs to be honest, to provide evidence based information to women and their families. Non-judgemental is so important, everyone lives their own lives and midwives have the joy of meeting so many women and not everyone will live their life the way the midwife does and that is fine.
7. What are your plans for when you qualify? Do you have any specific interests?
I am finding so many areas of midwifery fascinating to learn about that I don’t know where I will want to be when I qualify. I have not been on placement yet so I don’t have the experience to be able to say any specific interests.
8. What is the workload like, really?
As I have not yet been on placement i can only reflect on the theory workload. It is pretty full on straight away, at first it feels a bit overwhelming. I am a “mature” student so i was not in “learning mode” and it took me a while to find my stride but I have found my uni/study/life balance after a few months. Second and third year students have said that the pace doesn’t let up but you do get used to it.
9. Do you have any interesting placement stories that stand out?
I have not been on placement yet so have no experience of this yet, very excited to start my placements in the spring.
9. Give me a few random facts about yourself!
Ermm, I am not very interesting! I am in my thirties, married with two children, I have a dog and two cats and I like to read fantasy novels. I make all sorts of little art and craft projects, in lockdown I taught myself how to sew (basic) clothes using patterns and made a few items for my children.
10. What tips do you have for any prospective student midwives?
If this is what you want to do then go for it! It doesn’t matter if you are in your teens or in your forties it’s the passion that drives you. Read, read, read! Follow people on twitter and instagram it really is amazing the information that is out there on social media (something i am still getting the hang of)
Twitter @Adi01463993 and Instagram @studentmidwifeadi