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Rob Waterson, BSc (Hons) Adult Nursing

For graduate Rob Waterson, seeing first-hand the impact that good nursing can have on patients and their families has inspired him to embark on a career doing just that

“I chose to become a nurse mainly because of my mum,” says Rob.  “She was a nurse, and has been one of my inspirations in life. Despite that, I don’t think I understood the impact of good nursing until she was diagnosed with cancer when I was 16. After spending most of my Wednesdays during sixth form with her in the Chemotherapy Day Unit, I learned how a good nurse interacts with patients and their families.”

Diverse cohort

Rob enjoyed BSc (Hons) Adult Nursing at LSBU because of the diverse make-up of his cohort. “People came from all over the world to study at LSBU,” he says, “as well as from a lot of different backgrounds. I was studying alongside people who came straight from school, others who has done access courses, and others that had previously studied in different areas or worked in other careers. That wealth of experience came together at LSBU, helping us form a new workforce being trained to deliver excellent, forward-thinking care.”

Insight into the world of nursing

Like many of our graduates, Rob looks back at his placements as being absolutely key to a successful start to his career. “I did all my placements with Guy’s & St Thomas’ Trust, and learned a lot about leadership in my time there,” he says. “It gave me my first practical experience of dealing with patients, and an insight into the world of nursing. I feel extremely lucky to have had the chance to shadow and work closely with Matrons and the Site Nurse Practitioners. It showed me how far you can go in nursing, but also the skills that nurses have – including clinical, managerial and communication skills that help them deal with difficult, often highly emotional situations.”

Become a nurse leader

That exposure to nurses as leaders has clearly had a big impact on Rob. “I want to study for an MSc in Leadership, and go on to become a nurse leader,” he says when asked of his plans for the future. “I want to build on the great success of nurses, and play my role in encouraging more nurses to get involved with things that they can have an impact on. I want to enable and empower nurses to get their voice heard.”

The best thing about studying at LSBU is the contact you get with those at the top of the profession. You are encouraged to think about the future of nursing, and the future of your own career as well as training at some of the best London hospitals.

Rob Waterson

Stop The Pressure London

Helping the voice of nurses to be heard is an aspiration that Rob has already started to live up to, playing a key role in organising the first London-based Stop The Pressure Conference. “The conferences are organized by students for students, and I was emailed about the chance to get involved in Stop The Pressure London,” he says. “The aim is to work together to try and stop pressure damage from occurring to nurses, providing a forum for discussion and debate. When I volunteered to chair the organising committee, I didn’t realise just how big a challenge it would be.”

Huge success

The conference was a great success, chaired by Michelle Mello, deputy director of Nursing NHS England, with speakers including Ruth May, Nursing Director Monitor, and Ann Keen, formerly Minister for Health. “The event seems to have been a success,” smiles Rob. “LSBU is still buzzing, and staff and students are still talking about the day. I learned a lot from running it, and will take that experience forward into anything I go onto in the future.”

Harnessing potential

In many ways, Rob’s commitment to developing the future of nursing reflects the relationship he has with LSBU himself. “I feel that LSBU saw the potential I had and harnessed it. The University has worked with me to help me achieve to the best of my ability, and learning from specialist nurses who do an amazing job has been a great experience,” he says. “Developing the potential of others is certainly something I hope to pass on throughout my career.”