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Meet Natasha, former Access to HE: Nursing and Midwifery student who is thriving at Edge Hill University

Natasha Wheatley, former Access to HE - Nursing and Midwifery student, kindly took time between her busy study schedule of tutorials and placements to speak with us about her time at Warrington & Vale Royal College and how she is getting on at Edge Hill University.

Natasha Wheatley

Natasha is currently in her first year at Edge Hill University where she is studying midwifery. Natasha had wanted to become a midwife for a while but didn’t have the qualifications needed to pursue this career. Then, when in labour with her youngest child, Natasha met a student nurse from Edge Hill University who studied Access to HE – Nursing & Midwifery at Warrington & Vale Royal College and inspired Natasha to do the same.

During her time at college, Natasha was grateful to have access to pre-recorded tutorials and additional online calls to aid her learning experience. Without these, she wouldn’t have been as sure of herself in her exams. She feels as though the Access to HE course set her up perfectly for life at university, teaching her the fundamental foundational skills like academic writing, referencing and presenting – all of which increased Natasha’s confidence. She says: “I’m grateful that I did the Access to HE course before going to university. It makes you get used to things as simple as sitting in a classroom setting again for the first time in years.”

Natasha has a lot of appreciation for those at the college who helped her to get her to where she is now, and she can’t recommend studying a Access to HE course enough. She says: “This course has enabled me to gain the qualifications I need for university and along the way I have met the most amazing friends. The tutors really take the time to ensure you’re ready for university by making sure your personal statements include everything they should. Also, participating in mock interviews before the real ones with university, takes a bit of the pressure off.” Natasha says that her tutors Gerri Capper and Chris Geal are fabulous and were good at toughening them up before moving on to the world of university and placements.

Natasha is thriving at university having already completed her first block of placement at Warrington & Halton Teaching Hospitals. She says: “I’ve been loving getting to experience working in a hospital setting, it really puts it into perspective how much midwives have to do and it makes me look forward to the future.” On placement, Natasha has observed real life births and has gotten involved with adding patients and medications to the system, postnatal checks as well as providing some feeding support.

During her tutorials at university, Natasha has been learning all things specific to midwifery such as clinical skills and the policies you must follow in the hospital. When we asked about if she’d recommend Edge Hill and the course she is currently on, Natasha said: “Absolutely. Edge Hill have great facilities and the tutorials fit well around my schedule.”

For those aspiring to become a midwife, Natasha recommend they read ‘Becoming a Student Midwife’ by Ellie Duran, which she uses as her guide. She also recommends volunteering in a hospital, care home or similar environment, as this helps to build confidence in supporting, and advocating for, vulnerable people. this experience will provide you with a range of transferable skills that can be added to your personal statement and makes the transition into placement less frightening. Natasha also had the following words of advice: “Never compare yourself to other people. Those with more experience in a hospital setting, higher grades or more confidence. Everyone is on their own journey, and it will be much more enjoyable if you focus on your own progress!”

Natasha is looking forward to qualifying as a midwife in 2025 and we wish her the very best of luck - we have no doubt she’ll go very far in her chosen career!

Find out more about our Access to HE courses