Celebrating our nurses and midwives: Jackie's story
Jackie McBride became an adult nurse to make a difference to the lives of her patients and improve the delivery of care across the sector, influencing policy change. This is her story.
"I’ve always been interested in people and their stories. In my teens I worked in a nursing home and got my first insight into caring for others. Here, I made connections with residents and saw the difference I could make to their lives. Soon after, I started working in a hospital and watched nurses looking after their patients. I was drawn in by the variety of their work and I decided that nursing was the right career for me.
"Not long after, I started my nursing course and became a qualified nurse by the time I was 21. Over the next 25 years, I worked in several roles and settings, including critical care, as a ward sister, managing a large oncology and haematology unit, and for Macmillan Cancer Support.
"I’ve also been involved in implementing the national nursing strategy, to help improve patient care. This has included the development of a multi-professional course in the care of acutely ill patients (both locally and nationally), evolution of the Critical Care Outreach Service, and the introduction of the Early Warning Scores system.
"I started working in a hospital and watched nurses looking after their patients. I was drawn in by the variety of their work and I decided that nursing was the right career for me."
"I was keen to specialise in oncology and further my career progression, so I completed a BSc (Hons) Clinical Practice course at the University of Surrey. The staff were incredibly supportive and Melaine Coward, the Head of the School of Health Sciences, was my tutor.
"I’ve always related to educational initiatives within my clinical practice, and I took the leap into teaching and learning eight years ago, joining the University of Surrey as a cancer nursing tutor in 2012. I’m now the Head of Professional Preparatory Programmes, educating and preparing the next generation of healthcare professionals. In my role, I get to create innovative ways of learning and teaching through curriculum design, contributing to future healthcare professional practice.
"I’m humbled to have been nominated for an excellence in teaching award recognising my contribution towards the student experience. The best part of my job is working with students, watching them develop and grow in confidence throughout their healthcare journeys. I look forward to contributing more to the healthcare sector through my research, once I’ve completed my educational doctorate."