More Student Success in Science at Solihull College & University Centre
Tuesday, 16 May, 2017

Students studying towards their Foundation Degree in Applied Biosciences are already reaping the rewards of their hard work and they still have another year left of their studies.

Recently, student Kelly Boyd secured employment with Sandwell Hospital as a phlebotomist just 7 short months after starting her Foundation Degree at the College. Now, fellow student Rob Walford is following in her footsteps as he too has secured a position at a local hospital and is not even half way through his studies.

The Foundation Degree, accredited by Oxford Brookes University, was developed last year to tackle the skills gap currently found in hospital laboratories. With the investment into the labs, including a brand new LEP funded Life Science laboratory, matching the standard of the laboratories in the NHS, the students at the College are able to gain a range of skills which they can transfer directly into a workplace, putting them in a competitive position in the job market.

This has proven to be true for student Rob as he has secured a role at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham as a Medical Lab Assistant.

Rob began his studies at the College after being out of education for 5 years and deciding it was the right time for him to give learning another shot. This is where Rob discovered the Access to Science course at Solihull College & University Centre, commenting “The course gave me a good footing for progression as you covered a range of different topics. The setting at the College is more manageable as the class sizes are much smaller than at a large university and you also benefit from more contact time with tutors.”

After progressing with the Access course Rob spoke to his tutors at the College about his next steps and decided that he wanted to progress further with his education and started on the Foundation Degree in Applied Biosciences.

Andrew Schneider, Head of School for Science at Solihull College & University Centre commented, “The courses we offer allow students to embrace the learning culture of the College and embark on a learning experience which requires maturity and responsibility from the very first day. Our students are able to take advantage of work placements with our NHS Trust partners, which will in turn help them to progress within the industry.”

Rob added “I did not expect to have the opportunity of a work placement within the first few months of my studies, but it was a great experience as it reinforced my thoughts on the direction I wanted my career to go in. I was able to transfer the knowledge and skills I have learnt at College into my work placement at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and make the most of the opportunity. The materials you use at College ensure you are well equipped to work in a professional setting and I feel my confidence has increased since studying.”

Rob’s hard work and knowledge was clearly noted at the hospital as they offered him a position within hospital’s laboratories. Rob will be working as a Medical Lab Assistant on a casual contract whilst he continues with his studies, with the hope of becoming permanent once he gains his Foundation Degree.

Find out more about Solihull College & University Centre’s Science courses.

Rob Walford, Science Student