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Royal College of Nursing appoints LSBU nursing student to its council

LSBU Learning Disability Nursing student Sylvia Duval becomes the newest member of the Royal College of Nursing Council
20 April 2015

Ambitious mother-of-two and London South Bank University (LSBU) nursing student Sylvia Duval has been elected as the new student member of the Council of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN).

Council members hold a key role as governors of the RCN, and Sylvia, 28, who is a second year Learning Disability Nursing student at LSBU, will be responsible for enhancing student experience and influencing practice.  She will be in post from April 2015 until 31 December 2016. 

"My main responsibilities will be to ensure a point of contact for students to forward their views, experiences, opinions and ideas to influence decisions and improvement to student services as well as promoting the culture and values of the RCN," Sylvia explained.

"I am delighted to be given the opportunity to have a really positive impact on the experience of student nurses around the country. All nursing students go through challenges which sometimes go unnoticed. But I hope that all students will feel they have someone who understands their position and gives them a platform to voice their views and ideas."

In order to be elected for the position, individuals have to be nominated by at least two other students who are members of the RCN. The seven most outstanding candidates, selected by the committee, are then put forward to be elected by RCN student members.

Before training as a nurse, Sylvia worked for five years as a health care assistant and was quickly promoted to Team Leader. She says the skills gained in this position enabled her to develop leadership and communication skills which she believes are vital for her new role.

"It can be quite a challenge juggling studies, work and also looking after my two small children. But with the support from LSBU I have been able to not only excel in my studies but also take advantage of the many opportunities that are presented to students studying nursing," Sylvia added.

The RCN is a union membership organisation with over 432,000 members in the UK and describes its mission as representing nurses and nursing, promoting excellence in practice and shaping health policies.