The School of Nursing hosted a ‘Men in Nursing’ event on 20 June 2019, during which over 40 Year 9 to Year 11 male pupils were given an insight into nursing.
The pupils came from Holy Cross College in Strabane to this event which was held on the Magee campus, and they had the opportunity to experience various aspects of nursing including clinical skills and mental health nursing.
The pupils also had discussions with staff and students about what nurses do. They also heard from men who are currently working as registered nurses in the NHS and in higher education, as well as undergraduate students currently studying for a degree in nursing.
The day was highly interactive with nursing students from Ulster University demonstrating clinical skills such as hand washing, CPR, trauma and wound dressings, blood pressure measurements and bed making, with the pupils enjoying some hands-on experience of nursing through involvement in the various activities throughout the day.
This project aimed to address the stereotypical view of nursing as a female-only profession and in doing increase pupil’s knowledge and awareness about nursing and to influence perceptions so that they would consider nursing as a viable career option in the future. They heard from university staff that by undertaking a degree in Nursing at Ulster, they will learn to nurse in a compassionate and respectful way that promotes dignity and wellbeing.
Darryl McCullagh (FHEA), Educational Outreach Officer in the Centre for Flexible Education, said:
“Through our school-partnership work with primary and post-primary schools across Northern Ireland, we are engaging with the next generation.
Through this ‘Men in Nursing’ event, we are working to inspire the next generation of male nurses, by breaking down barriers and stereotypes of men in nursing. In partnership with Derry City and Strabane District Council, school boys from Holy Cross College in Strabane had the opportunity to hear about opportunities for careers within the nursing profession.”
Professor Sonja McIlfatrick, Head of School and Professor of Nursing and Palliative Care, explains:
“We want to get young people, including boys, to think about a career in nursing from an early age and through events such as this ‘Men In Nursing’ event, we are able to demonstrate how our nursing graduates will have the skills to respond to the changing needs of adults who require nursing care within a variety of rapidly changing healthcare environments.
Career prospects for our nursing graduates are excellent and we will continue to work with partners to attract even more people to nursing as a career, leading to better care for patients.”
This project was led by Stephanie Dunleavy and Ursula Chaney in collaboration with Darryl McCullagh from Educational Outreach, who would like to thank the many staff members who contributed to making this event a success including
- Dr Neal Cook (Associate Head of School of Nursing)
- Claire McGlone
- Gerard Baxter
- Dr Ben Fitzpatrick from the School of Sport
Northern Health and Social Care Trust staff:
- Roisin McSwiggan (Lead Nurse for Workforce Planning at the Northern Trust)
- Eugene Douglas and Anthony Scullion.
Alongside these members of staff there were nursing students who volunteered to lead the activities at the event and were inspirational role models for males within the profession.