Kate and Anna celebrate being first class students.

Posted on 5th November 2013

Two members of NHS staff, who have completed their degrees at the University of Chester, will be celebrating achieving the highest marks across their student groups as they graduate this week.

Kate Hannah, 38, from Little Neston, completed a two year Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care alongside her work as Clinical Support Worker in general clinical theatres at Wirral NHS University Teaching Hospital’s Clatterbridge site.

Through a range of assessment methods, she achieved a75% average; the highest across her student group. Her work was highlighted by the External Examiner in the July 2013 Foundation Degree Subject Assessment Board as being of an exceptionally high standard which had been a joy to read.

Kate (pictured left) said: “Having not studied for nearly 20 years, I was thrilled to get some high marks for my assignments and some amazing feedback from both my tutors and the external examiners. I am really proud of the fact that I managed to achieve this while working full time. 

“As the course is directly linked to my workplace, I have already been employed as a Theatre Assistant Practitioner. This role is an extension of the role I carried out previously, and now enables me to carry out the role of Scrub Practitioner, where I assist the surgeon throughout a surgical procedure. This is something I have a real passion for, and would not have been able to do without this qualification. However, I don’t view this as the end of my study, and I intend to come back to the University of Chester to top my qualification up to a full degree at some point in the near future.

“My husband Stuart and my two children Sam and Isaac will be coming to see me graduate. I think it’s important that the boys see what can be achieved when you work hard, and also the reason why the ironing was not done for nearly two years!”

Anna Fawcett

Anna Fawcett, 21, from Burton in Lonsdale, North Yorkshire, will be graduating with a First Class honours BSc Adult Nursingafter she gained 90% for her dissertation which researched communication methods between nurses and patients who have aphasia (difficulty in understanding words or finding the words they want to say) following a stroke.

She focused on a thematic review of research about the experiences of stroke patients, as she found that most studies on the subject had interviewed staff, but rarely patients themselves.

Hazel M. Chapman, Senior Lecturer in Nursing at the University said: “Anna achieved 90% for her research proposal which demonstrated both Anna’s academic ability and her respect for the people she cares for. She uses her abilities to meet their nursing needs holistically and sensitively in addition to communicating authentically and meaningfully both verbally and in writing. She demonstrates the essential nursing skills of empathy and unconditional positive regard, committing herself wholeheartedly to her studies. She will undoubtedly become a good nurse.”

Anna (pictured left) added: “I am thrilled to make it through final year with a first class degree, especially with having to juggle writing my dissertation with placements, my (then) fiancé Rhys being admitted to hospital, and planning our wedding, which took place on September 21, 2013. We will be celebrating my graduation with fireworks…lots and lots of fireworks!”

Anna now works as a staff nurse on a stroke unit in Manchester, and eventually aims to work in research.