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A FIRST FOR NWRC SCIENCE GRADUATE TINA AND HER DAUGHTER BROOKLYN

27 August 2021
Tina downey and daughter

First Class student


Congratulations to our Foundation Degree in Applied and Medical Science Graduate Tina Downey, who recently graduated with a First Class Honours Degree in Biomedical Science from UU, on the same day her daughter Brooklyn graduated with a First in Criminology and Criminal Justice.

Tina, who previously left school without any formal qualifications, returned to education and studied the NWRC Access Diploma in Combined studies, NWRC Foundation Degree in Applied and Medical Science before moving on to Year 2 of a Biomedical Science Undergraduate Degree at Ulster University.

During her studies at UU Tina investigated the factors affecting the uptake of the childhood MMR vaccine and was published in the Reviews in Medical Microbiology.

Tina says: “Studying at NWRC was the best decision I made. Returning as a mature student is daunting and all of the students and many of the lecturers were years younger than me, but I was never made to feel too old or past it and I have made friends for life along with gaining valuable qualifications.”

This FD in Medical and Applied Science can be studied on a full and part-time basis at NWRC.

Students from the course can progress to year 2 of a range of related degree programmes at Ulster University or elsewhere or can enter at Year 1 of a wide range of degree courses.

After completing the FD you may also explore employment opportunities which could include: • Pharmacy Technician • Dietetic Assistant • Cardiology Technician • Audiology Technician • Basic Level Pharmacology Staff • School Technician • Assistant Grade Professional

To apply for a Higher Education course at NWRC go to www.nwrc.ac.uk/results

Name:

Tina Downey

Course studied at NWRC?

Access Diploma in Combined studies and Foundation Degree in Applied and Medical Science

Previous Education before you came to NWRC?

I left school before completing any formal examinations

Why did you choose to study at NWRC?

In the first instance, it was the location that appealed but after completing the access course I knew that the lecturers, facilities, and support were second to none so I didn't even consider any other colleges.

Tell us about your course.

The Foundation Degree in Applied and Medical Science was extremely engaging with lots of practical work which gave me a real hands-on experience. The varied subjects were delivered by lecturers who were extremely knowledgeable and supportive and who made the whole experience extremely enjoyable. Nothing was ever too much trouble for them!

Did you take part in any work-based learning as part of your course?

In my final year, I had the opportunity to undertake 400 hours of work-based learning and I completed this in a local pharmacy as a Dispensary Technician and I was privileged to experience first-hand the many facets of working as a community pharmacist giving me insight into the many roles and responsibilities this career entailed.

What did you do afterwards?

The Foundation Degree allowed me to progress to the second year of a Biomedical Science Undergraduate Degree at Ulster University where I recently graduated with First Class Honours. For my dissertation at Ulster University, I completed my final year project on factors affecting the uptake of the childhood MMR vaccine and my literature review was published in Reviews in Medical Microbiology. I hypothesised that one of the main inhibitors of vaccine uptake is the poor readability of materials available to parents. I, therefore, aimed to determine if parents' understanding of the material available could negatively influence uptake due to the inability to read and digest the information presented to them. I endeavoured to further ascertain if a drive to provide literature which was easily comprehended by the parental decision-makers could help with childhood vaccine uptake rates in the UK and NI.

Where are you working now?

I am currently working part-time in retail while I apply for laboratory-based jobs and hope to become a research scientist.

Would you recommend this course to other students?

Undoubtedly this was the best decision I made. Returning as a mature student is daunting and all of the students and many of the lecturers were years younger than me, but I was never made to feel too old or past it and I have made friends for life along with gaining valuable qualifications.

I knew that the lecturers, facilities, and support were second to none so I didn't even consider any other colleges.

Tina Downey
Graduate of Foundation Degree in Science at NWRC

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