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Mental Health Nursing: Running in our blood?

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The University of Stirling has become somewhat of a household name for my family in Ireland. My older sister Céire started studying Mental Health Nursing in the University in 2013 and later graduated in 2016. From hearing about the coursework, the different range of placements and different opportunities available, I decided to follow in her footsteps to pursue a career in nursing. I decided to leave my job as a nursing assistant in Ireland in 2015 to commence studying as a Mental Health Nurse also. Since making the short ferry trip over, Stirling has become a home away from home. It wasn’t long before I found myself working away on the wards gaining extensive skills whilst continually learning.

Whilst Céire and I were both studying and working in Stirling, our youngest sister had just completed secondary school back home in Ireland. She was working full-time in a local nursing home to gain experience before figuring out her future plans. It was during this year she became passionate about caring for others. She began looking at universities to further her learning, and from discussions with us, she decided she too wanted to attend the University of Stirling to study Mental Health Nursing. She is now just a few months into her training, after starting in 2017, and enjoying life in Stirling.

To have three sisters in the same university who all studied the same course may seem strange to some, however with many nurses in our family, it seemed to be more of a vocation. The University of Stirling has since become home to us, and provided us with endless opportunities since arriving in this beautiful city.

The reason I have chosen Mental Health Nursing is that my Mum is a Mental Health nurse and has been for many years.  I remember from a young age she would bring me and my siblings into the ward, to visit the patients to have a chat with them, and on the occasion we would  show the patients our Irish dancing skills. Within our home mental health was always spoken about and of the importance to look after your mental health but also your physical health.

Furthermore it definitely made my decision to become a Mental Health nurse evident with the passion and love my mum has for her job, and hence from this three of her daughters are following in her footsteps.

Sophie Casey
29 December 2017

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