"At first I was very apprehensive about starting because I felt that I may be out of place as a mature student but that isn’t the case at all...”
Lisa Foster, 3rd year BSc (Hons) in Mental Health Nursing student from Kells, Co. Meath is a recipient of the Servisource Nursing & Midwifery Scholarship. She took a less conventional route into nursing and applied as a mature student after a spending a number of years working and then starting a family.
“I heard about DkIT through a close friend who had completed the Mental Health Nursing course here. She was extremely positive about her experience and about DkIT and completely sold DkIT to me”
“I have always had an interest in Nursing as it runs in my family although when I sat my leaving cert I didn’t get enough points for general nursing so I decided to take time out and work and then try again. After working out in industry and starting my family I decided that Mental Health nursing was the route that I wanted to go down instead so I don’t some research and decided to apply!”
She had some reservations about applying as a mature student and was worried that the transition to higher education might be challenging.
“Before I began my course DkIT held a mature student introduction day which I feel really helped me ease into the experience. At first I was very apprehensive about started because I felt that I may be out of place as a mature student but that isn’t the case at all and the introduction definitely helped me realise that there were other mature students just like me and that was reassuring.”
Lisa's experience at DkIT to date has been a positive one.
“I absolutely love my course and it was for sure the best choice for me. The campus is nice and small so you get to really know your class mates and they are all so supportive. It also allows the lecturers to really get to know you and because I think with the bigger colleges they don’t get that and you’re just a number essentially."
She particularly enjoys the hands-on nature of the course.
"We get do to a lot of work placement I our course which personally I love because I feel like that’s how you get the most out of the experience and that’s how you learn to react to real world situations. Placement can be very tough in a number of ways but I know it will be worth it in the end and DkIT does offer support throughout. One thing that our lecturers do before we go in placement is link us up with other years who has been in the area that you are going to so that they can chat to us about their experience and give us some tips which is a great help and makes the experience less daunting.”
She was delighted to be awarded the Servisource Scholarship which provided €1,500 towards her continued studies.
“We had to write an essay about the code of conduct which is applicable to all nursing disciplines. I enjoyed the assignment because you could reference back to your own personal experiences. The assignment allowed me to reflect on situations that I have been in and I think that’s a very valuable learning experience as a student nurse. It was amazing to be able to get the opportunity to take part in the competition and I was thrilled to win it. It’s relieved a lot of financial stress ahead of my final year as for example childcare costs are extremely expensive so it’s a real weight lifted off my shoulders which is great!”
For Lisa the best this about DkIT is the strong sense of community and the support you receive from lecturers and wider staff.
“The best thing about DkIT for me is the support that is on offer because it is a smaller college. The lecturers are all so approachable and you’re treated as a peer.”