The placement was very helpful for my future role. It was my first experience of working within an office environment, with a variety of different team members. I very much enjoyed my time there, the team were very friendly, welcoming and I was lucky enough to have a really great Supervisor, a Clinical Psychologist.
I felt quite valued. Whilst working with social workers, nurses, psychologists and psychiatrists it was different for each person. Within the team I worked directly in I felt valued and part of the team. However, when inputting ideas that needed to be put forward I was sometimes not taken seriously, but this was perhaps because of the perceived level of importance of the tasks I was talking about.
I was given weekly supervision, as is usual with psychology placements. I had the opportunity to talk about things I did not understand, things that were emotionally challenging etc. it was very supportive. She also made an effort to suggest places I could visit and things I could sit in on so I could get the best possible experience.
It depends of the project I would be working on. Sometimes I did not have enough to do, sometimes I would be very busy working on projects. Day to Day there was a lot to do, meetings to attend, things to check and update, resources to make, groups to help run with. I was happy to take work on, but there was sometimes not much to do.
I was given a fair amount of responsibility, co-facilitating groups and writing notes myself. However, in the environment it was also important that I was protected and not given too much that was beyond my role, for safety of me and the patients/ the ability to make decisions. This was well checked and I feel that I was given a good amount of responsibility for the area I worked in.
It very much assisted in the future. I was able to understand how a healthcare service works, understand the different roles. I believe it is thanks to this placement that I received future roles that were paid, or other volunteer roles. It was important for my understanding of the NHS and my masters degree. I think it taught me how to reflect, which is very important for psychology work.
It was quiet at times when people were away on visits or working hard. But sometimes it was friendly and bubbly, with chatting and people offering to make cups of tea for eachother. There were times where there was stress from others, but this is normal. I noticed the supportive environment when people struggled, there was always someone to talk to about it.
It was well organised, the NHS and uni worked well together. I think the university was quite strict on how many days, hours and weeks I did but the team didn't mind. There was good communication from the uni and the NHS HR department and my time was organised ok. Quite well organised I would say
I was able to go to any trainings, in fact I was encouraged. I was able to read up on topics, was invited to CBT conferences where I learnt a great deal. There was a lot of freedom and choice for what I felt I wanted to pursue in terms of interest.
Staff Sales/Staff Shop
Following my placement I was offered to go onto the bank, which is agency work for the NHS. There were also opportunities to work as an Assistant psychologist, this was very appealing and the direction needed for my future roles and interest as a psychologist. However, there is was not a job at the end of the placement because of my work, it was independent, more about connections.
There were no other placement students, and not really anyone my age, as expected. There was a team away day, where we went to the high ropes and did some team building, there was also a christmas party. I think that there was a lot going on but as I didn't drive I wasn't able to partake.
So I think the area was ok, less than in london. But I didn't really spend that much time. I was living an hour and a half away from the placement so would want to leave for home quite soon after. It was the brighton and haywards heath area, but i didn't spend that much time socialising.
There was no nightlife in haywards heath, everyone went home after work at the hospital. I think perhaps a few people went to the pub but there wasn't really a 'club scene'. It was more of a professional setting, especially as there weren't many others my age so there wasn't opportunity to have a nightlife.
Activities outside of work such as meals, or fun days out were not really offered. As explained above, I think as there weren't many people my age, and as i travelled far i didn't take the opportunities to socialise. I do think that the value of the placement for me really was about my learning.
Placement (5-9 Months)
17th July 2019