100th nursing degree apprenticeship graduates from Northumbria University

Over 100 registered nurses have now been added to the region’s NHS workforce through Northumbria University’s 18-month nursing degree apprenticeship programme

The programme started in 2020. It was specifically developed to help more people into nursing careers. This included helping people who already had experience in clinical healthcare settings to graduate as a registered nurse in a faster time frame. 

This year’s group of nursing degree apprentices is special because it includes the 100th registered nurse to come through the programme. Further, this year’s cohort includes the first 18 apprentices from South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. 

Northumbria University’s nursing degree apprenticeship course

The apprenticeship programme is a joint effort with several with NHS Trusts across the region including Newcastle, Northumbria, South Tyneside and Sunderland and Gateshead, as well as Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation and other primary care organisations. 

Dr Julie Derbyshire, director of apprenticeships and assistant professor in nursing at Northumbria University, says it’s been a huge success: “This is a fantastic milestone for us to hit. These types of apprenticeship routes were brought in to help us, and other higher education establishments, offer an alternative route for individuals to become registered nurses and ultimately help to tackle the huge workforce shortage faced by the NHS at the moment.” 

She also highlighted how successful the programme has been: 91% of apprentices have achieved a first-class degree, which is the top possible grade. On top of that, every single person who completed the apprenticeship programme secured a job at the end. 

Dr Derbyshire says, “This is not only testament to the course quality but also a clear reflection of the enthusiasm, dedication and work ethic of our students. 

“To be able to say we’ve now added over 100 newly qualified nurses to the NHS is brilliant and is an incredibly strong foundation for us to build on. We’re looking forward to continuing to contribute to reducing the shortfall in nursing staff as we welcome future cohorts to Northumbria University.” 

What the programme is like for nursing degree apprentices

Nursing degree apprentice Nicola Hill, who completed the programme at Northumbria University, said: “The programme itself has been amazing and I have had so much support throughout my journey from the programme leaders, personal tutors, academic coaches and lecturers. All the teaching and guidance has been impeccable. 

“Each module has been very well structured with clear learning outcomes and a very good mix of learning from physical examinations, simulation sessions, written exams and assignments. 

“Although the programme was tightly structured, I feel it has been very successful in helping students achieve their dreams and goals. I am so happy I chose Northumbria to help me excel in my career and I will be forever grateful.” 


Image: Northumbria University newsroom 
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