Midwifery / Registered Midwife for registered nurses BSc(Hons): What our students say
Don't just take our word for it – here's what some of our current and recent students say about what it's like to study at Kingston.
Name: David Diaz Gomez
Course: Midwifery / Registered Midwife for registered nurses BSc(Hons)
When David Diaz Gomez realised he wanted to become a midwife he had to overcome several challenges to make this happen – not least being a male in a female dominated profession. Read his story below.
"To be honest, as a child I never thought I would be a midwife. I was born in Spain and during my childhood I always thought I would become a mechanic. In 1994, I obtained my diploma as a mechanic and worked for eight years in a factory, fixing all kinds of machines and robots. While working in the factory, I also trained as a professional diver and dive instructor. As a diver, I was working in the EEUU after the Katrina hurricane devastated the North of Florida and Mississippi. During this period, I managed to save enough money to pay for my studies in Spain, in this case a nursing degree. I was 31 years old at the time.
In Spain, midwifery is considered a nursing speciality and therefore there is no direct entry into the profession. A nursing student has to rotate for a period of one year in maternity and child-care. After my maternity rotation, I was so fascinated by the role I realised that I wanted to become a midwife.
I had to choose either to stay in Spain and work as a nurse-midwife or to come to England and apply to university to obtain a midwifery degree. The last option was more challenging; I knew before I could begin my midwifery degree, I had to improve my English language so that I could effectively communicate with people and colleagues.
Once I had finished my nursing degree, I got a job for a year on an acute medical ward in London. During this time I also enrolled in a range of activities that would help me reach my goal, such as English classes. These experiences gave me the confidence necessary to successfully undertake the midwifery access interviews and also the midwifery degree.
At the age of 35, I started to fill out application forms for all the universities which offered an 18-month conversion programme from nursing to midwifery. Many of my friends could not believe I was applying for this course because in England is very unusual to meet a male midwife. However, I knew that this was my dream and I did not care what people thought about me. I just wanted to do it and this is all that mattered in the end.
I was invited to an interview by a number of different universities in London; one of these was Kingston University. I attended all the interviews in order to make sure that I would definitely obtain a place. Fortunately, I passed the interviews and was offered a place at all the universities I applied for. Now I had to choose just one.
I decided to enrol at Kingston and St George's for several reasons. Firstly, the selection process for candidates was well organised and it gave me a good first impression. In addition I felt comfortable at all times during the interview and I had the feeling that I would be very well supported. They also offered me accommodation and access to many other facilities and I was surprised as no other universities offered me anything like this at the other interviews. Secondly, Kingston and St George's had a good reputation and this also mattered to me. Finally, I loved the location which was a really nice area. All these positive aspects influenced me and I decided to choose Kingston and St George's. Today I recognise that I made the right decision.
During the midwifery 18-month programme, I have felt exceptionally well supported by teachers, mentors, clinical facilitators and my personal tutor Valerie Sheridan. As a male student in a midwifery degree, you might expect to face some difficulties. However, with the appropriate support and guidance, it can be seen as a positive experience rather than an inconvenience. Kingston and St George's really care for their students, providing a range of tools and techniques to ensure that students are very well supported and guided during this time.
Nowadays, I am working as a midwife in one of the healthcare trusts where I was trained. This course has not only provided the opportunity to study the midwifery degree, it also provided the means to gain the job that I always wanted. It has been a rewarding experience."
Name: Jo Bécares
Course: Midwifery for registered nurses BSc(Hons)
"This 18-month programme has been consistently challenging throughout. Varied teaching methods have maintained an upbeat learning environment with each individual's learning capabilities and styles being complimented.
"As a student I have experienced a high level of support both on a personal and professional basis with skilled academic and practice mentorship facilitating my grasp of the varied concepts of midwifery care.
"Overall, studying midwifery at Kingston University and St George's, University of London has been a life-enhancing experience resulting in my ability to make the transition from nurse to midwife with a broad sphere of confidence and competence in the specialist area of midwifery."
Name: Rosemarie McLoughlin
Course: Midwifery for registered nurses BSc(Hons)
"I joined the 18-month BSc Midwifery programme as a mature student, having been a primary school teaching assistant for many years whilst raising my own three daughters and after completing a Diploma in Adult Nursing (also at Kingston University).
"The course is fast moving, and at times challenging, but the academic and personal support provided by both tutors and colleagues is excellent. There is always someone available if you need to discuss any aspect of your practice or need guidance with academic assignments.
"I have enjoyed the course immensely and feel privileged to have been given the opportunity to learn how to professionally support women and their families during the life-changing events of pregnancy, childbirth and adjustment to parenthood."
For more examples about what our students think about the course, visit the Faculty of Health and Social Care Sciences website.
- Five midwifery students and graduates reflect on their choice of career.
- Three BSc students compare notes.
- A midwifery student's diary of two days at university and two days on placement.
- Three third-year BSc students travelled to Uganda on a two-week placement, where they learned how to provide midwifery care without the technology available in the UK.
- Experiences of the Faculty's exchange programme to the Suny Downstate Medical Center in New York.