Students become Wesley interns for a week

02-12-2014
Students swap their school uniforms for theatre scrubs to become Wesley interns for a week
The Wesley Hospital is running its innovative school internship program this week (December 1-5), with 29 Year 11 students from schools around Brisbane spending the first week of their holidays immersing themselves in a hospital experience. 

The students, from 15 State, Independent and Catholic schools, were selected from more than 400 applicants keen to take part in this dedicated hospital school internship program, the first of its kind established for Queensland high school students and now in its third year.

Wesley Hospital General Manager Ann Maguire said the program aims to give students practical insights into working and learning within a key component of the healthcare sector.

“Students going into year 12 have some big decisions to make about their study and career pathways after school,” she said.  “By spending a week with us, the students have the opportunity for a hands-on, educational experience to gain an understanding of a range of careers within a hospital setting including nursing, medicine, allied health, and support services.”

This year’s Wesley school internship program will see the students learn skills in clinical simulation laboratories; spend time touring hospital departments, including theatres, wards and kitchen areas; and take part in presentations and discussions with healthcare practitioners.

The students were also visited by two of the participants in the inaugural 2012 school internship program, Michaela Gregory and Emily Ferguson.

Michaela, 18, of Ferny Grove, has this year completed the first year of her Bachelor of Nursing degree at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), while Samford resident Emily, 18, has completed the first year of her Bachelor of Paramedic Science, also at QUT. 

Both credit their week as Wesley school interns with helping them to refine their career pathways.

“All through year 11 I was thinking of going into teaching, but after two days of the internship program I started considering nursing,” said Michaela, who attended the Prince of Peace Lutheran College, Everton Hills. “I put down nursing as my first tertiary preference at the end of last year and I have really enjoyed studying it this year. I know that nursing is for me.”

For Emily, who attended Stuartholme School, a physiotherapy career was uppermost in her mind when she began the internship week.  “Exposure to the whole spectrum of healthcare at the hospital, from nursing to medicine to surgery, and seeing the interactions between all those involved in patient care got me thinking about changing my path to a career in medicine,” she said.

“The demands of Year 12 last year and balancing study, sport and my leadership activities meant I didn’t get the OP required to go straight into medicine, so I chose paramedicine. I really love it.  My goal is to finish this degree then sit for GAMSAT and enter medicine as a graduate. I’m interested in experiencing rural medicine, and then look at specialising in anaesthesiology.”