I am a Nurse by profession, both RMN/RGN, and have had long career in the NHS with a parallel career in the Army Reserve. Currently I am Colonel Commandant of Devon Army Cadet Force, a very part time bank nurse and volunteer with UK Med.
As Commandant of Devon ACF, I have been involved with the Devon rollout of the Nursing Cadet Scheme from the outset, it appealed to me immediately as I was one of the last of the Cadet Nurses in the seventies, albeit in a very different scheme. I would definitely not have entered the profession that I love without the opportunity to ‘test the water’ as a Cadet Nurse first.
My role is to ensure that the Nursing Cadets secure placements in areas of healthcare that interest them and also to ensure our cadets are well mentored and visited where possible during their placement. Liaison with a variety of healthcare trusts and organisations is essential to foster close relations and engagement for the future. My own nursing career in the has helped me in this role immensely and my leadership position in the ACF ensures an element of connectivity and, shall we say, ‘focus’ from the cadets.
I feel privileged to be involved in such an important scheme at a time when developing the healthcare workforce of the future has never been more important.