Universities spearhead event to encourage more medical students from non-traditional backgrounds

Posted by pt91 at Oct 17, 2017 11:48 AM |
Conference by Universities of Leicester and Nottingham on 18 October targets young people in Lincolnshire

Issued by University of Leicester on 17 October 2017

Young people from any secondary school can become a doctor: that’s the message that a conference organised by the Universities of Leicester and Nottingham aims to instil in sixth form students in Lincolnshire and beyond.

The universities are spearheading efforts to boost recruitment into the study of medicine by focusing on locations where young people have traditionally not applied for the subject.

The conference ‘A journey to medicine and healthcare’ takes place on 18 October from 9.45am to 2.45pm at North Kesteven Academy in Lincoln. Unlike other student recruitment events, the organisers are taking this conference out of the university, to the young people themselves in an effort to hit home the message that medicine is open to everyone.

It has already proven popular with Year 12 students as the 110 places available at the conference are fully booked.

The free one-day conference is designed for young people from schools and colleges who do not send many students to university to study medicine or are serving communities with high levels of disadvantage. It will be an opportunity for delegates to meet with staff and students from the two medical schools in the East Midlands.

The conference is being jointly organised by the University of Leicester and the University of Nottingham in association with the Medical Schools Council and North Kesteven Academy.

Professor Richard Holland, Head of Leicester Medical School, said: “Medicine is a great career. I would encourage all A-level science students, particularly those taking Biology and Chemistry, to consider a career as a doctor if they genuinely enjoy caring for people, would enjoy a career that is constantly developing, varied, and intellectually challenging.

“We should be recruiting from all schools in the country and that is why we are delighted to be visiting Lincoln and meeting Lincolnshire students.  Too few young people from Lincoln seem to consider applying for medicine, and we hope we can begin to change that now.”

Dean of the Nottingham Medical School, Professor Tony Avery, said: “We are highly committed to widening participation to medical careers and have considerably expanded the opportunities for students from non-traditional backgrounds to study at our Medical School.”

The event will provide delegates with information and guidance about the admissions processes for medicine; advice and useful resources; interactive taster workshops; and access to experts from the universities for questions.

Attendees will also hear a personal account from a former medical student now Junior Doctor working in Lincoln County Hospital.

The conference is a follow on from a range of teacher and advisor conferences funded by the Medical Schools council that took  place in medical schools across the UK over the past year.

Dr Paul Garrud, Chair of the Selection Alliance in the Medical Schools Council and Honorary Associate Professor in the School of Medicine at the University of Nottingham, said: "Our country and our region need more doctors to serve our communities. We wish to encourage young people who might not have considered medicine before. Our local medical schools now have access courses for students from disadvantaged backgrounds."

Dr Hannah Grosvenor, Widening Participation Manager at the University of Leicester, said: “Access to medicine is a core strand of our widening participation strategy because students from disadvantaged areas often dismiss the idea of a medical career. We are thrilled to be able to engage with students, provide information and support, and encourage them to make a fully informed decision about their future.”

Mr Neil Wilkinson-McKie, Headteacher at North Kesteven Academy said: “It has been our privilege to be working closely with our two Medical School partners and the Medical Schools Council to create and stage this fantastic event.

“For our students, their teachers and our parents it is an amazing opportunity to put together, host, provide face to face advice, guidance and support for students to enter the world of medicine. Not only does it encourage our outstanding students to aim high it also ensures that we have first-hand access and support from these universities who have been superb in their support of our students – I cannot thank them enough!

“Being the chosen partner and the fact that this is the only school based conference of its type in England demonstrates the dynamism at work here at North Kesteven Academy and through our innovation we are able to support other students in other settings too.”

Ends

Notes to editors:

For more information contact  wpteam@le.ac.uk

The University of Nottingham has 43,000 students and is ‘the nearest Britain has to a truly global university, with a “distinct” approach to internationalisation, which rests on those full-scale campuses in China and Malaysia, as well as a large presence in its home city.’ (Times Good University Guide 2016). It is also one of the most popular universities in the UK among graduate employers and the winner of ‘Outstanding Support for Early Career Researchers’ at the Times Higher Education Awards 2015. It is ranked in the world’s top 75 by the QS World University Rankings 2015/16, and 8th in the UK by research power according to the Research Excellence Framework 2014. It has been voted the world’s greenest campus for three years running, according to Greenmetrics Ranking of World Universities.

Impact: The Nottingham Campaign, its biggest-ever fundraising campaign, is delivering the University’s vision to change lives, tackle global issues and shape the future. More news…

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