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25 September 2017

From a hospital cleaner to an undergraduate nurse…

One started their career at Papworth as a cleaner, the other doing admin work, but now two members of staff are closer to their dream job as a nurse – thanks to the opportunities working as Healthcare Support Workers (HCSW) opened up for them.

Natalie Baker, 28, and Zoe Tesseyman, 23, were among a number of HCSWs who this month (September) completed their Assistant Practitioner (Nursing) foundation degree, which they studied for while working on Varrier Jones Ward. It means they will now become Band 4 members of staff and  have the recognised skills to take their career to the next stage and become qualified nurses.

Natalie first worked at Papworth as a part-time cleaner while studying at sixth form college. “As soon as I came I knew I just wanted to stay here – it’s brilliant,” she said. “The people make it what it is, it’s a lovely atmosphere.”

After leaving college and working as a Radiology Assistant at the hospital, Natalie realised her future lay on the wards and became an HCSW in 2012. “I just wanted more patient contact," she said. "I spoke to one of the sisters and she helped me get the job. The training was excellent; Papworth has its own programme, supported by ARU, and after that we had the chance to start the foundation degree course. We spent Tuesdays at the university - it was hard, but it was a really good training opportunity.

“Now we’re hoping to be accepted on to the apprenticeship course at the hospital which starts next April - after that we will be qualified nurses.”
Zoe, who originally joined the hospital team as a Customer Services admin worker, didn’t realise the HCSW role existed until she spotted a job advert one day. “I saw it, looked at the job description and thought ‘I want to do that’. It was the fact that you didn’t need a background in healthcare particularly, that you could be trained on the job. Papworth puts you through the courses to get your qualifications. It was such a great opportunity.”

Natalie added: “The job is very rewarding and every day is different – there are so many amazing things we do here that really make a difference to people’s lives.

"I would encourage anyone who’s interested in a career in healthcare to find out more about the HCSW role. Papworth is so helpful when it comes to training opportunities; there are so many pathways and skills and they are really good at pushing us to succeed here.”

For more information about careers ar Papworth Hospital, call 01480 364982 or click here.