Alumni Collaborations & Visits Class of 2013

Mental Health Nursing

Making a real difference in mental health, thanks to Bucks degree.

Mental health nursing graduate Will Barker came back to Bucks New University to help with activities around World Mental Health week by coordinating an event and leading workshop sessions for students.

Will Barker with Alan Baillie

Will has kept strong links with the University since graduating with a first class BSc Hons in Mental Health Nursing in September 2013. He has become a student mentor and taken part in lectures to share his experiences for the benefit of those training to be mental health nurses.

He explains: “I enjoy working with students and I’m delighted to be a mentor so that I can offer my support to students throughout their degree programme to qualification. I think it’s important to give something back to the University as I had a great experience. Today’s students are the workforce of tomorrow and helping them to reach their potential will ensure that their patients get the best possible care and outcomes.”

“I loved my time at Bucks New University. The course leaders – Alan Baillie and David Rawcliffe – run a fantastic programme which really prepared me for life as a qualified mental health nurse. I started my first job confident that I had the practical skills, backed up by the relevant theory, that I needed to make a real difference to people’s lives. I’m so pleased I chose Bucks New University and am proud to still be part of the institution,” said Will.

Alan Baillie, senior lecturer in mental health at Bucks New University, said: “It was a pleasure having Will as a student on our mental health nursing programme. Given the drive and enthusiasm he showed during this course, his current successes are well merited. Will is testament to the success of our graduates who leave us with the skills and experience they need to secure jobs in their preferred fields. I’m looking forward to collaborating with Will on future projects.”

After graduation, Will joined West London Mental Health Trust as a staff nurse on an acute inpatient admission ward for adults with mental illnesses and has recently been promoted to become a Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) nurse. Will hopes to train as a clinical nurse specialist for children with learning disabilities.

David Rawcliffe, senior lecturer in mental health, commented: “Will is an inspiration to me and others; he has the ability to connect with all people and uses this skill to help them develop. He has an extraordinary career ahead of him and I’m confident that he will continue to demonstrate compassion and challenge to his patients, colleagues and the students with whom he works.”

We are also delighted that Will has been included in the ‘how to be a mental health nurse’ feature on the Success at School careers website which is targeted at 13 to 19-year-olds. The site receives 70,000 visits each month and the interview has been published to tie in with the launch of Mental Health Awareness Week.
Read the interview here.

Picture: Will Barker with Alan Baillie

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