Made in Nottingham – three major awards for our student nurses

Student nurses from the University of Nottingham’s School of Health Sciences have won three major awards at this year’s Student Nursing Times Awards.

In a record year for entries, the School’s BME Student Network won the Mary Seacole Award for Outstanding Contribution to Diversity and Inclusion, and two Nottingham nursing students won in individual categories at the gala awards ceremony in London.

20-year old nursing student, Rachel Dakin from Bakewell in Derbyshire, won ‘Student Nurse of the Year: Children’, and the award for ‘Learner of the Year: Post-registration’ went to 26-year-old Phoebe Miles from Nottingham.

The Student Nursing Times Awards are the ‘Oscars’ of the nurse-training sector and are hosted by the Nursing Times to celebrate the achievements of the student nursing community. The University of Nottingham has a long tradition of awards success in the recognition of its pioneering work in modern nurse education.

Reacting to their win, Kudzai Muganhiri from the School’s BME Student Network, said: “As the co-founder and leader of the BME network, I am very proud be the first to win a Mary Seacole Outstanding Contribution to Diversity and Inclusion. This year has been phenomenal as we aimed and succeeded in merging with our trust partners to not only work together in improving BME student experiences but also to uplift student engagement across the board. Of course, this would not have been possible without our staff sponsors, Julia Carson Little and Stacy Johnson, who have been relentlessly resourceful, supporting every decision, strategy and monthly running of the group. A special thank you goes to the University of Nottingham for harnessing my leadership skills and NUH BAME network for allowing us to work together to improve the lives and experiences of BME students.”

Commenting on her win as Student Nurse of the Year: Children, Rachel Dakin said: “I am absolutely elated to have won this national award out of so many talented future children's nurses across the UK. I would like to thank members of staff in the School of Health Sciences at the University of Nottingham and Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust for their tremendous support, encouragement and dedication to my learning. The opportunities provided have enabled me to strive for excellence and innovate care for children, young people and their families.”

Winner of the Learner of the Year: Post-registration award, Phoebe Miles, said: “I’m really thrilled to have won this award; it feels incredible to be recognised for academic achievements alongside celebrating the fantastic work of nurses. I hope that my successes along with the other winners in Nottingham can inspire future nurses to undertake post-registration learning so that we can continue to advance patient care. I’m now very much looking forward to continuing my studies through my PhD at the University of Nottingham in Ningbo, China. “

Head of the University’s School of Health Sciences, Professor Joanne Lymn, added: “We are thrilled that yet again the University of Nottingham has had a bumper year at the prestigious Student Nursing Times Awards. The three awards are so very well deserved for these student nurses and the BME Network team and our other nominees should also be hugely proud of their achievements. Our School of Health Sciences has a reputation for pioneering best practice in nurse training and education. I would also like to thank all the staff in the School who so effectively engage and empower our students to help produce some of the best nurses in the world.”