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Nursing Degree Apprenticeship shortlisted for national award

20th February 2024

Northumbria University’s Nursing Degree Apprenticeship has been shortlisted for the Nursing Apprenticeship Provider of the Year award in the Student Nursing Times Awards 2024.

The Student Nursing Times Awards highlight excellence in student nursing education. Shortlisted organisations are recognised by judges for providing an enriched educational environment which provides outstanding support to students throughout their studies. The awards also recognise individuals as being some of the brightest talent to enter the profession.

The Nursing Apprenticeship Provider of the Year category, new for 2024, is intended to acknowledge universities and health and care providers which deliver high standards of training and experiential teaching to nurture and inspire their nursing apprentices.

Northumbria’s programme, which launched in 2018, was the first 18-month nursing degree apprenticeship course in UK and is approved by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

The course was specifically developed to open up nursing careers to more people and to give individuals with previous clinical experience the opportunity to graduate as registered nurses within a compressed time frame.

Delivered in partnership with NHS Trusts across the region including Newcastle, Northumbria, South Tyneside and Sunderland, Gateshead and more recently South Tees, as well as Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation and other primary care organisations, the government-registered scheme will see its 100th apprentice graduating in March, marking a huge milestone for the programme and demonstrating the impact on the region’s workforce. 

L-R: Elaina Henderson, Dominic Simpson, Deborah Gee, Zoey Kennedy, Karen Corder, Julie Derbyshire, Tracy Ord, Paul Gill.

Speaking on the shortlist announcement Professor Paul Gill, Interim Head of the Department of Nursing, Midwifery and Health, at Northumbria University said: “We’re incredibly proud to have been shortlisted for the awards. To go from being the first 18-month degree apprenticeship to run in the UK to seeing more than 100 apprentices graduate and enter the NHS workforce is a huge achievement and really is testament to the quality of the programme and the apprenticeship team, led by Julie Derbyshire and Karen Corder.

“Workforce shortages within nursing are one of the biggest challenges faced by the NHS and these registered apprenticeship courses significantly contribute to reducing this shortfall.

“NHS England’s workforce plan aims to increase the number of student nurses training through apprenticeships from 9% to 28% by 2031-32 and it’s great to be able to see how much of a contribution we can make to achieving those goals.”

Dr Julie Derbyshire, Director of Apprenticeships and Assistant Professor in Nursing added: “The apprenticeship course at Northumbria is an outstanding programme. Since its inception there has been significant investment into its development, and we have some brilliant partnerships with employers.

“This is evidenced by the outcomes. Over a three-year period, 91% achieved a first-class degree and 100% of those who completed the course secured employment.

“It’s really great to have that success recognised. The apprentices themselves also need a mention as without their enthusiasm, dedication and work ethic we would not have seen such amazing success.”

In addition to being shortlisted for the Nursing Apprenticeship Provider of the Year, Assistant Professor of Nursing, Dr Sarah Annesley has also been shortlisted for Nurse Educator of the Year, after being nominated by her students.

The award recognises exceptional teachers that inspire, enthuse and motivate their students to further their knowledge and understanding.

Commenting on the shortlisting Dr Annesley said: “I'm thrilled to be shortlisted for this award and even more delighted that the nomination was made by both current and former students.”

The award ceremony will be held on Friday 26th April in London.

Northumbria’s Department of Nursing, Midwifery and Health was recently recognised in the Times Higher Education Awards for its Outstanding Support for Students, noting the success of a specialist six-week summer programme designed to support students within the department who had taken a break from their studies to complete their course.

Northumbria University is dedicated to delivering high quality learning and development opportunities through experiential teaching using simulation-based education and innovative virtual reality technology to enhance practical learning.

Northumbria University is one of the largest centres for healthcare professional education in the North of England, offering a range of specialist degree and CPD programmesacross many areas of nursing, midwifery, operating department practice, physiotherapy and occupational therapy. The University’s Children’s Nursing programme is ranked third in the UKin the latest Guardian University Guide.

The University is dedicated to reducing health and social inequalities, contributing to the regional and national workforce and improving social, economic and health outcomes for the most marginalised in society. Through its new Centre for Health and Social Equity, known as CHASE, researchers will be delivering world-leading health and social equity research and creating innovative, evidence-based policies and data-driven solutions to bring impactful change across the region, the UK and globally.

Click here for more information on higher and degree apprenticeships at Northumbria University.

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