My NCH&C TNA Journey
My NCH&C TNA Journey
Christie, Trainee Nurse Associate, NCH&C
I began my career in NCH&C working as an administration apprentice for the Patient Experience and PALS team. I decided to undertake this role as I knew I wanted to work within the NHS and felt this was a good way to get my foot in the door. The role opened opportunities for me and allowed me to gain insight into how the NHS/NCHC Trust works, the different localities and teams and so much more. I felt supported throughout my apprenticeship with regular visits and meetings with the LEAD team and with my Poultec apprenticeship mentor. I was also supported very well by my peers and fellow colleagues who had previously been in my role and understood the essential steps to take. If I ever had any concerns or queries I knew I could go to any of these people for support.
After my initial apprenticeship position, I enrolled as a bank staff member and I was then successful in gaining a Trainee Nursing Associate (TNA) role on a community inpatient unit for specialist elderly and rehabilitation at NCH&C.
I found the jump from administration to clinical wasn’t as tough as I thought because I was so interested in my new work and skills that I looked forward to coming in and this distracted me from any worries. Adjusting to my new role was made easier with the help of my colleagues who provided me with the knowledge and support I needed to do well.
The TNA course two years in which I work full time and complete one day a week at university. I’m required to complete specific paperwork and time sheets over this period which are then marked yearly.
I’m now over a year into my TNA course and will be joining the NMC register in November to become a Registered Nursing Associate. I’m really enjoying the course and can say I love my job. It has its hard days but it always feels worth it knowing you’ve done the best for your patients and colleagues. I’ve enjoyed that I am still able to continue my studying alongside work and although it can be a challenge at times, getting the right balance of work and study has been beneficial.
I’m hoping to register as a Band 4 Registered Nursing Associate and then complete a 2 year top-up to become a Band 5 registered nurse. I’m still unsure as to where I would like to progress following on from this and what area I would like to work in, but I’m sure once I’ve done more placements and worked in a range of places I’ll figure it out. I would like to stay working within NCH&C once I’m newly qualified to continue building my confidence and then possibly work in an acute setting.
Future learning tips for myself or others in similar roles would be to not doubt yourself, start with the basics until you’re fully comfortable, and always ask questions.
I would recommend an apprenticeship at NCH&C as it opens up a wide range of opportunities and knowledge and is an amazing way to get into working for the NHS. Starting off as an apprentice gives you the upper hand as it allows you to learn the basics first and work your way up with the information that you need available to you. As an apprentice, you get to learn what areas interest you, what you are good at and what you can improve and then use that throughout your development.