Work experience

Work Experience

Work experience during Covid-19

Covid-19 has impacted on how we support young people to gain work experience in the NHS. The past few months have been a challenge and we continue to put processes in place to protect our patients and staff. We therefore have had to reduce the amount of external people coming into the Trust. This has meant that where we would normally facilitate face to face work experience placements and workshops, we are having to consider alternative options.

It is crucial that we keep young people who are interested in a career in the NHS motivated and inspired. We are working on different ways to provide you with an insight into different careers within the NHS, including Medical, Nursing, Therapists and other essential roles.

We will be updating our work experience section as much as possible with upcoming Live Chats and activities for you to be a part of, these will be beneficial to you when completing your CV or Job Applications.

If you need to gain work experience for a University placement, please ensure that you speak to the University directly as they will be able to provide advice in what you can do.

Live chats

A one hour experience for students to meet our staff and ask questions about their job role and learn about their career pathways and successes. Please scroll to the bottom of this page to see if we have a Live Chat that piques an interest, these are listed on the expression of interest form, which you must complete in order to receive a virtual invitation.

The ‘GET IN’ Work Experience Programme

Our Trust aims to be at the forefront when it comes to giving young people and adult learners a helping hand on the road to a career in the NHS. The ’Get In’ Work Experience Programme is in line in with the NHS Health Education England Talent for Care Widening Participation Programme - ‘Get in, Get on and Go Further’.

Due to capacity within all departments, placements are limited and we prioritise local students who either live or attend an educational institute in the London boroughs of Barking and Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge.

Please check this page regularly for updates on our upcoming Medical and Nursing career programmes.

Work experience opportunities are available for the following:

Educational clips for students

Michael's journey: from work experience to Deputy Director of Finance

Michael Gilham Michael Gilham (pictured right) is our Deputy Director of Finance and at the age of just 37 he has had an amazing career journey. He grew up locally, living in Cranham and attended Campion School in Hornchurch.

Michael kindly agreed to answer some questions in order to help students that might feel a little lost in what it is they want to do as a career and comfort those that might feel a little unsettled in what to do next.

What age did you complete your work experience?  

I undertook my work experience at the age of 15 (1998).

Where was your work experience?

I did two to three weeks at Oldchurch Hospital with the finance team (Oldchurch has been replaced by Queen's). In the mornings I was with finance admin team opening the post, recording cheques, reconciling pay runs and in the afternoon I would go upstairs and work with the management accounts department. I did things like entering journals onto the financial ledger and searching for and matching invoices etc. I was supported by David Long who remains in the Trust finance team.

Michael performed various tasks, ones that are definitely not heard of now

I used microfiche which are tiny little slides that look like old photo frames to try and find snapshots of invoices that had been archived and then tried to match them up to resolve different queries. Times have moved on a tad. It was great going in as a 15-year-old and being able to talk to people about work. You learn a lot of interpersonal skills. It is good to be exposed to a bit of what working life is like.

What was your ideal career at the time?

I didn’t know. My family had worked in the hospital before and they helped me with the knowledge of the NHS. I came back to the Trust in the summer of 1998 and worked a summer job on the bank in finance. After my A-Levels in 2001 I came back again but this time I worked for about 14 months in the Goods Receiving team which receives and distributes deliveries ahead of going to university. I met so many people and I found out a lot about the services and what they did.

Even at university I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I just knew what I was good at maths IT, business studies and economics. They all just sat very easy with me.  This led me into something fairly general.

So, what happened after University?

After Uni, I joined the Society of London Treasurers finance graduate scheme (local authority-based scheme) and worked at the London Borough of Havering – this is where I studied for my professional accountancy qualification. I knew I wanted the acceleration in my career that a graduate scheme offered. I didn’t even know I wanted a finance qualification to be honest; I could very easily have ended up in more general management within the NHS.

I meandered a bit for the first few years, trying different things, without a clear career ambition. It has only been in the last 5-6 years that I have had greater focus on where I would like to end up. It took me a while to reflect on my career and what I had learnt and what my gaps were. I wanted to broaden my horizons and start to think more strategically so I stepped out of finance in NHS hospitals and had a go with NHS England and NHS Improvement to broaden my experience and network. That was for about 3 years before I came back to working in an NHS Trust.

What have you learnt the most throughout your career path?

It is really important to try and understand the type of person you want to be and the attitude you have. People look more at appointing your behaviours and attitude and you can then be trained, it is not always about being technically brilliant.

What were your final steps before starting with BHRUT?

I took up my first job in the NHS as a Finance Manager at Mid Essex NHS Trust in 2012, before various roles at Great Ormond Street, Barts, NHS England and NHS Improvement before coming back to BHRUT in Feb 2019 initially on secondment for 6 months and then permanently from August 2019.

How have you found your career journey in BHRUT?

I like being at BHR. I really like working for my local Trust. It helps with work life balance and I find it incredibly helpful knowing about the area. Our chairman Joe Fielder may call it having Skin in the game because you are working to improve services that your family and friends may need. For me finance is not just about saving money, it’s about looking at things for the NHS that are good for patients and our staff. You start to think about if my wife or children become sick – I want to know that there will be great care and services available for them. It gives you a common purpose for working with clinical and operational colleagues.

The people at BHR are fab. This is the first finance team I have been a part of that has no vacancies. I have 60 plus in my team and one member that is bank which is incredible and it gives that family sense of belonging.

What impact do you feel Covid has had?

Covid has really made me realise that you need to be able to deal with change and be flexible. You can go away and learn exactly how to be technically great when actually if you have the can-do attitude and maturity you can adapt. This is the type of person I would want to find and hire to work.

What advice would you give Work Experience Students coming to BHRUT or using its Work Experience Services?

Most importantly, try to get some work experience. Gain interview experience, and learn more about yourself. Don’t be afraid to be yourself when you’re going through interviews. Yes, prepare but do not be scripted, be open minded and positive. Try a range of things. You have got to try stuff before you know what you like. It’s nice to have an end goal but you don’t have to go straight there, you can move around and experience a lot of opportunities as there is so much out there. Research into how broad job opportunities are may help. For example, people automatically think finance is all about invoices and payments but actually for me it is more about enabling strategic projects and service improvement. It’s definitely strategy that I prefer rather than transactional work.

Work Experience is a great thing to have, and as a Trust we are keen to support the local population and economy. I would suggest that you get yourself out there, as that is where you see good (and bad) practice, which can be equally good learning.  Meet different people and learn about different leadership styles.

The Journey of a Physiotherapist: Jenny Smith, Team Lead Physiotherapist Orthopaedics

What made you pursue a career in Physiotherapy?

Originally, I wanted to coach gymnastics but the careers advisor at school said that it would be very difficult to make a living doing a job like that. She said until I was coaching at a national level it would not be a full time job and even then I may not earn enough to be able to ‘live a nice life like have a nice house and nice holidays’. I was then discussing with my dad what I could do and he suggested physiotherapy. I didn’t know what physiotherapy was and he explained to me that it was someone who helped people learn to walk again after they had broken their leg. And the rest is history!

Does your job role live up to your expectations?

Being a physiotherapist has been so much more than what I expected. Like I said I didn’t really know what it was. It turns out there are physiotherapists who help people learn to walk again after breaking their leg, but there are also physiotherapists so many different things.

Everyone has the same common goal though and that is to help someone either regain the quality of life they had previously, or help them adapt so that they can regain as much of their quality of life as they can.

Describe a typical day in your department?

A typical day working in Integrated Therapies starts with a morning handover. We meet with the nurses to check how our patients have been overnight and to learn about any new patients who have arrived. We then prioritise our patients for the day and assign which therapist will see them.

I do in fact work with patients who have broken their legs, and other bones as well. I start by seeing anyone who can go home that day if I have assessed them, and then follow this with any patients who had surgery the day before. It is my job to check that they can move their arms and legs, that they can walk, and that they will be safe at home. I work closely with the Occupational Therapists to ensure that a patient can manage their daily activities at home such as getting washed and getting dressed.

What challenges do you face within your job role?

Physiotherapists do encounter several challenges in their day-to-day work. The biggest one is always having enough time to spend with the patients. You always want to spend as long as you can with them but also want to make sure you see everyone. It is a constant balancing act. And as you would expect when dealing with people in a hospital you can often be involved in quite emotional situations when patients or relatives might be up upset or angry.

Clinically there will always be the challenge of complex patients who maybe require specialist rehabilitation or who require multiple types of rehabilitation for multiple problems. And of course COVID has brought it’s own set of challenges. Our role often involves getting quite close to patients and treatment is often hands-on. Respiratory therapists complete breathing exercises with patients and require them to cough. We have had to adapt what we can.

What are the best bits about the job?

Without a shadow of a doubt the best thing about being a physiotherapist is helping someone regain a skill or function that they had lost and did not think they would get back. It might be something as small as being able to button their own shirt or as complex as being able to walk again but it is the best feeling in the world.

What do you feel are the most important qualities in being a good Physiotherapist and staff member?

To be a good physiotherapist you have to be hard working and have a degree of physical fitness - a lot of the specialities can be physically demanding. You have to be patient – improvement can be slow to achieve. It is vital that you keep your patient motivated.

And you have to want to help people – the hours can be long (often involving being on-call overnight and working weekends), the demands on your time plentiful and sometimes you cannot help despite your best efforts and realising that can be tough so you have to really want to help and make a difference.

Tell us more about the career/education path you took and the qualifications you gained

I have been qualified quite a while now but when I did my training I needed 3 A-Levels grades B or above to get into university and one of them had to be a science. I was lucky to get what I needed. I went to Brighton University and did the standard BSc which took three years. After graduating I started working as a Junior Physiotherapist (sometimes called a Band 5) and did this for about eighteen months. As a junior you complete general rotations through the different specialities as this helps you consolidate what you learnt at university.

I then took what used to be called a Senior 2 Physiotherapist job (now a Band 6) which was a slightly more specialist role based in MSK and Orthopaedic services. I had this job for around 4 years before getting what I considered to be my ideal job as a Specialist Physiotherapist in Trauma Orthopaedics. I have been very lucky with my career to achieve what I set out to.

What advice would you give students looking into pursing this career?

I would definitely advice doing some work experience and getting to know what the different types of physiotherapy are. There are so many that you just don’t realise and who knows what your area of interest might be. I would also advise be prepared to do the rotations. A lot of people get into physiotherapy already know which area they want to specialise in and aren’t keen to complete general rotations however the basic knowledge gained by doing this is essential. You never know when your patient with a broken leg might also have a stroke!

The Journey of a Rapid Response Team Physiotherapist: Aime Perrin

Aime Perrin What made you pursue a career in Physiotherapy?

When I left ccollege,I gained my Fitness Instructor certificate. I knew I didn’t want to do it forever but I didn’t know what else I wanted to do. My manager at the time encouraged me to look at University Courses to compliment my fitness knowledge. I didn’t have the A levels for Physiotherapy so I chose to do a course in Injury Rehabilitation. 

I took a year out to work abroad after this degree and applied for an Undergrad Physiotherapy course while I was away. I had an interview with the University of Brighton. I was accepted on the course and started on my return.

As a junior I rotated through all the different specialities and knew I wanted to work with inpatients within a medical setting. On joining the Trust as a Band six I secured a post in the medial team. It covered the care of the elderly, medical, respiratory, oncology and haematology wards and the front door services. Soon after joining I rotated into the Rapid Response Team that cover ED, Elderly Short Stay and the assessment units for medical and elderly.

I quickly realised that this was the area I wanted to peruse and applied for a permanent position within the team. I knew I wanted to be based in one specific area but I wasn’t sure what I wanted to specialise in, I love the rapid response team and the areas we cover as it’s such a broad scope of patients we will have on our caseload, I feel like you get a bit of every speciality. I work Monday to Friday - 8am to 4pm - and participate in a seven-day weekend service rota.

Does your job role live up to your expectations?

I think it has exceeded it. The reason I enjoy working in the front end of the hospital is that you never know what’s going to come next. You may be assessing someone with an ankle fracture one minute and then the next patient may have been admitted with neurological concerns. I have a particular interest in spinal injury patients. These can occur frequently in Emergency Department (A&E); it definitely keeps you on your toes and you have to use a broad range of skills.

Describe a typical day in your department

Directly as a team I work with physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and therapy assistants. However, day-to-day, we work with a range of other professions: doctors, registered nurses, health care assistants, the frail older persons’ nurses. Depending on the patients we may work alongside speech and language therapists and orthotists. Currently my team covers the Emergency Department (A&E), frailty unit, and Medical Assessment Unit (MAU). 

We can be called anytime to attend ED to assess patients. Between the frailty unit and the assessment unit we carry a caseload of patients that are referred by doctors or nurses, or anyone we identify as needing therapy input. We attend daily huddles for handover of patients, speak to patients and relatives to gain information about patients have been coping leading up to their admission. This helps us complete functional assessments that would include looking at bed transfers and patients mobility status.

We may have to complete neurological assessments or even respiratory assessments and treatments. Working in the front door services a lot of our day is based around assessments for discharge planning from hospital and admission avoidance, so we do a lot of referrals and communicating with the community teams.

What challenges do you face within your job role?

Of course, Covid-19 has been a big challenge over the last year. We all had to be extremely flexible and adapt to a constantly changing environment. You come across difficult situations, especially working in the front door services. If you have a patient that has a particularly complex discharge plan this can be a challenge, but it makes you think and to bounce ideas off of your colleagues really helps. There’s never a dull moment.

What are the best bits about the job?

Working with patients and when know you have done something to help them that has avoided them coming into the hospital and getting them home. That’s always really rewarding. But also the team; we have a great one and being around people that are positive and want to help each other makes it even better

What do you feel are the most important qualities in being a good Physiotherapist and staff member?

I think one of the main qualities in being a physiotherapist is communication and listening skills. Sometimes when you think of physio you automatically think about physical/exercise and the assessment side. Often we are one of the professions that will spend more time sitting talking with patients and relatives and sometimes that’s what they need more than anything. So being able to talk to patients and relatives and other staff and being able to listen to concerns and feedback is really important.

Tell us more about the career/education path you took and the qualifications you gained

As I mentioned above I didn’t have a direct route in to physiotherapy. When I was at college I was actually studying music technology and was quite certain I wanted to work in radio behind the scenes. While I was at college I did a short course in fitness instruction and I worked in the gym on and off for around ten years. 

On leaving college I took a complete u-turn and studied Injury Rehabilitation at Middlesex University. I believe this really helped build my confidence in meeting new people and learning the foundations about anatomy and physiology in more detail. I decided to take a year out and work abroad in a school for a year and apply for a physiotherapist degree.

I initially wanted to do a masters as it was for two years. However, after speaking to universities and with my learning style, I’m not sure the more intense course would have benefited me. I chose to go back to undergraduate training and was accepted in to the University of Brighton. I passed my degree with an upper second class with honours. I didn’t like school and didn’t want to go to University on leaving school, but I’m really pleased I went down this pathway and I don’t see myself doing anything else.

What advice would you give students looking into pursing this career?

Research the job. Physiotherapy can take you down lots of different routes. If one area doesn’t sound like it is for you, there are probably other areas that you will love. Try to go on some work experiences within the NHS. This will help you to get a feel for the different areas and what a day may look like as a physiotherapist. The fact that there are so many options to specialise in and rotate through makes it a great career.


Tina's journey as a Speech Language Therapist

Tina My name’s Sangeeta also known as Tina. I’m Hindu Punjabi, multilingual, and proud to say that I am a Speech and Language Therapist (SLT). We work hard for our patients so they can have access to basic human rights: communication, eating, and drinking.

I work with adults who have communication and swallowing difficulties, as a result of a stroke. My role is to provide assessment, diagnosis, and therapy. I also facilitate mental capacity assessments advocating for my patients. I do this by using my expertise in communication assessments and facilitation. This ensures my patients receive the specific support they need to understand, think, and talk about decisions during mental capacity assessments, as well as advanced care planning.

My role also involves advocating for my patients when a decision is made in their best interest. I explain their preferences and views about different decision options to the people making the best interest decision.

We all communicate in different ways, but when things go wrong it can affect our whole world: from our feelings, to the way we act and the relationships we have with others. When working with my patients I am not just providing therapy to repair their speech and communication, but looking at ways I can help them restore their confidence, regain their independence, and re-establish their sense of being.

Eating and drinking is also an important part of our lives. It provides us with social opportunities, independence (for example going to a restaurant or café with family and friends or family gathering where we make memories around the table). For me it is important to give my patients the practical and psychological support to build up their confidence.

I also provide practical solutions to everyday challenges associated with eating, drinking and swallowing safely (minimising risk of chest infection/aspiration). It involves taking a wide approach so they can achieve meaningful goals, and improve their psychological well-being and quality of life. 

The latest statistics on the ethnic distribution of speech and language therapists show that 93.4 per cent of the SLT work force is made up of white Speech Language Therapists (HCPC EDI data, 2020). I stumbled upon Speech and Language Therapy when I was working with adults with learning disabilities as a support worker after I had finished my BSC in Psychology and Msc in Health Psychology.

I was one of the very few Indian girls on my course at City University and initially the only speech therapist, and then one of the few Indian speech therapists in my career. When I was growing up I only knew what the role of a doctor, nurse, lawyer or teacher is, I never came across the words speech and language therapy.

What challenges do you face within your job role?

Wearing PPE which made our service users feel like patients rather than humans. Once you have a gown on and are lying in a mechanical bed, you have people analysing you, touching you examining you, asking you questions and then you are surrounded by other people that are sick too.

Yes they are patients being admitted into hospitals but humans too. The PPE made it tricky to build rapport at times with patients which is key to building trusting relationships, and this is important for achieving meaningful goals helping our service users in their road to recovery. 

The PEE presented therapists as clinical or associated with an institutionalised setting and less approachable. This made our service users feel like patients - diseased and frail - rather than human who can recover, are resilient, have loving families and backstories and challenges to overcome and a life to return to. Humans who want to get better.

This made me really sad. Especially wearing PPE made it difficult at times to treat patients with communication difficulties, as you are taking away their visual support as they are unable to see your facial expressions and mouth movements which are essential when seeing them face to face especially for your apraxia and dysphasia patients. It felt as though you are taking away their crutches (their support).

It is tricky to carry out rehabilitation tasks integrating patients back to the community as those patients with Covid-19 had to be isolated, making it difficult to rehab them.

We also provided an efficient service to patients whose first language is not English. As family members were not allowed on the ward we had to get interpreters virtually on Microsoft Teams or Starleaf, which isn’t the same as human contact.

This is when I realised what a unique and valuable service I was able to provide as a multilingual SLT as I often worked on the wards as a translator as I can speak Hindi, Urdu and Punjabi as well as English advocating for the patients and making information accessible to them.

I remember a patient saying to me ‘when people talk to me it goes to my brain, but when you talk to me in my language it goes to my heart’. I was able to provide that comfort and reassurance to these patients and their family members who felt equally comforted despite not being able to see their loved ones in hospital face to face they were reassured that I could advocate for them.

I was often referred to as ‘daughter’ or ‘granddaughter’ rather than Tina SLT. This also provided a great opportunity for me to educate the team on different types of cultural knowledge or competence and teach them words in Punjabi, Hindi, or Urdu so they could understand their basic needs.

What are the best bits about the job?

My patients! I feel privileged that my patients and families allow me to be a part of their journey. Whether it is to be there for the end, ensuring that they can still eat their fish and chips or samosas like always. Not only that, to help them communicate to get their affairs in order or a path to a new beginning. We help people to have  meaningful life after a stroke, and show them how valuable they are to this world. It is so rewarding and gives me that job satisfaction; making a difference, changing the world one word at a time.

What do you feel are the most important qualities in being a good SLT?

Communication skills,  interpersonal skills, Passion, dedication, compassion, empathy, caring, kind, team work, flexibility, active listening skills, patience, adaptability, creativity,  initiative, and organisational skills.

Journey of an Adult Speech Language Therapist: Sophie Whitehead

Sophie Whitehead What made you pursue a career in (your job role)?

I knew I wanted to do something working with people, but not teaching or nursing (this was the extent of my careers knowledge at 16). When I discovered Speech and Language Therapy (SLT) I thought it would be a good fit. It provided the opportunity to work with varied client groups in individual or small group sessions. It covered lots of interesting subject areas: biology, psychology, sociology, ethics, English language.

Does your job role live up to your expectations?

Yes. I’ve been really fortunate that I chose SLT on a whim and have loved it ever since I started working in 2013.

Describe a typical day in your department?

Currently I lead our acute Speech and Language Therapy Team. A team of four of us cover all acute medical wards across both our hospitals. The day starts with checking new referrals and huddling as a team regarding what the day looks like for everyone.

Some days I am mostly see patients but other days it’s interspersed with meetings, teaching, clinics, supervision.

Clinically, I mostly work on our admissions units and on the care of the elderly wards. I see patients who have swallowing and/ or communication difficulties for assessment and management. We work closely with ward teams (nurses, heath care assistants, doctors, physiotherapists, and occupational therapists) but also with the wider MDT. This can include dietitians, palliative and the end of life care, nutrition support, dementia, and learning disabilities teams.

I often attend multi-disciplinary team meetings particularly around complex decisions around eating and drinking. I also am trained in Videofluoroscopy (swallowing x-rays) and completing my FEES (swallowing assessment with a small camera in the throat).

What challenges do you face within your job role?

In Speech Therapy are we see a large volume of patients who have life limiting conditions (i.e. progressive neurological conditions) or sudden life changing events (i.e. brain injury), so it can  be emotionally draining.

During Covid it’s been challenging having such large numbers of patients deteriorating/ dying, often without their families being able to be there.  Also working in full PPE makes communication really difficult particularly with our patients with communication and/or hearing difficulties.

What are the best bits about the job?

The best bits are:

  • no day is the same and you’re always learning
  • Sometimes you feel like you’ve done something to contribute towards improving/ maintaining someone’s quality of life
  • meeting so many different people and hearing their stories

What do you feel are the most important qualities in being a good Speech and Language Therapist and staff member?

  • ·Being empathetic and compassionate
  • ·Being flexible and adaptable – especially working in an acute setting
  • ·Being driven and a team player

Tell us more about the career/education path you took and the qualifications you gained

I found out about SLT by sheer luck. I was 17, so had just started sixth form with no idea what I wanted to do after. My best friends were going on a school trip to our local University and I wangled my way on the trip.

While I was there I was looking at their perspective and SLT caught my eye and decided I would look into that. A little bit more reading that evening I was decided and I’ve never looked back.

By this point I had already picked my A-level choices, which to be honest left much to be desired. I was totally clueless about what I wanted to do at the time of picking, so once I’d settled on SLT I then picked up an additional AS level of Human Biology to do alongside my A2 year so I met the requirements for the course.

I did the compressed three-year undergrad degree at the University of East Anglia, qualifying in 2012. When I qualified the job market was poor. Most people from my year did something else for a year to gain more clinical experience. I wasn’t too sure about this but randomly applied for a ‘Rehab Assistant’ role which after a disastrous interview I surprisingly got and did that for nine months and loved, before getting a position as a newly qualitied Speech and Language Therapist.

Academia has never really been for me; I’ve never pursued any further educational qualifications (which you don’t really need as a SLT as clinical experience is what is most important), but I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to complete an MSc module on End of Life Care via LSBU in 2019.

What advice would you give students looking into pursing this career?

Do it, it’s a great career. Try and gain experience directly in SLT or just in working with people with communication difficulties to help you get on the course. The course is intense (SLT is a four-year course but lots of people will do it compressed into two/three years) and not always enjoyable but working is so much better.

Ameera’s virtual experience with our Widening Participation Team


Ameera Ameera, 16-years-old from Newham High School, blogs for us on her virtual experience with our Widening Participation Team.

25 February 2021: Live chat with Aiysha Ahmed, Senior Occupational Therapist, Oncology

This session was really fascinating. You can really tell how much Aiysha enjoys her job, just by really listening to how passionately she talks about her roles and the work she carries out. I definitely learned a great deal, as I didn’t know much about being an occupational therapist and what it actually entails.

Listening to the talk made me learn that being an Occupational Therapist is about being of service, giving needed assistance to patients and being a huge part in their process of recovering and developing the skills they need for daily living.

The skills that I learnt for what is needed to be an Occupational Therapist are:

  • Empathy - it’s something that you can always develop
  • Patience - sometimes the process just takes its time
  • Determination - as it genuinely is an intense role and you’re very involved in a person’s life
  • Flexibility - you are going to be working with a wide variety of patients and have to be able to adapt to different situations and finally teamwork is essential, as well as prioritisation.
  • Being an Occupational Therapist you have transferable skills and can try out other roles as well as moving around demographically, within the NHS of course.

Overall the session was very much enjoyable and I definitely discovered a lot!

12 March 2021: Healthcare Science Programme

The whole programme had been extremely informative. Hearing from the different healthcare scientists about what it is that their job involves was intriguing. It was also really interesting to hear that some of the healthcare professionals didn’t take the traditional route of going through medical school. That was comforting to hear there are always alternative routes available. 

4 March, 11 March, 16 March, 30 March: Dr Chandu’s sessions

Session one: communication skills

The first session really took me by surprise when they asked everyone to do a quick introduction. It was unexpected and really put me on the spot. Undoubtedly the session has helped me gain a sort of idea of what it is that you should talk about and all the things you should cover when asked this question.

I would definitely say the session has helped me improve more on my communicating skills and helped highlight what it is that I need to improve on.

Session two: the need to know about the role of a doctor

This session helped in answering all the questions I had, learning what really sets doctors apart from the other ‘helping people’ roles. It also cleared misconceptions; the idea that doctor’s know everything or that as soon as you graduate that you’re perfect. You're still learning and investing that knowledge as you go and picking up things as you experience them.

Session three: interview and application skills

The session really cleared most of my worries about taking an interview. I now know the basic structure of an interview and the best way of carrying a successful interview. Even though you may not get accepted in, the experience itself is a gain and you have that familiarity of what the experience is like. You can use that to your advantage and become better prepared for the next time.

Session four: skills day - everything learnt

The last session was really enjoyable to interact with the other attendees and discuss our viewpoints on the interviews we’ve seen. It was nice seeing a different perspective. I would definitely say that I left knowing what it is you should and shouldn’t do at an interview and the standard of how you should carry it out.

AS Level students - years 12 and above

If you are in year 12 and looking to apply to medical school in the next 12 months, our three day medical work experience workshop can help give you an insight into what it’s like to have a career in medicine.

We are currently unable to hold any face to face placements or programmes, however we are organising various virtual experiences please keep checking this webpage to keep up-to-date with the latest Work Experience News and Virtual offers.

School students - years 12-13

School students (year 12 to year 13) who are seeking a work experience placement within context of their school’s career activities. We support local schools by providing placements for school students. 

Unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to support applications from schools outside our local boroughs.

Please note: We only offer a structured work experience programme for medical and nursing placements. Medical work experience programmes are only available to students in Year 12 and above. Please do not submit an expression of interest for any medical related (Doctor/Surgeon/Consultant shadowing) or general nursing placements as we are unable to process these requests.

Please check this page regularly for updates on our upcoming Medical and Nursing career programmes.

Important information about work experience

People and young people must not directly contact relatives, friends or employees within our Trust requesting placements or send generic letters to wards/departments or individuals who already work within our hospitals. Any requests need to be submitted by completing the below ‘expression of interest’ form. 

Unfortunately we are unable to accommodate any work experience requests for students that are under the age of 16, this is due to the nature of the work carried out in the hospital.

Please note our numbers are restricted and therefore not every applicant can be accepted.

Students are advised to consider carefully what their area of interest is and formulate their personal statement of application accordingly.

The length of placement will depend on area of work experience.

We will not be able to consider applications where you do not fit the criteria or do not follow the correct procedure for expressing an interest.

Due to the need to protect individuals from potentially upsetting situations, the need to safeguard patient confidentiality and health and safety concerns there are no placements available for the following areas:

  • Theatres (including day surgery and recovery)
  • Intensive Care Units
  • Breast Screening Unit

For the same reasons as above there is also an age restriction of over 18 years in the following areas:

  • Emergency Departments (A&E)
  • Midwifery
  • Paediatric, with the exception of the Little Explorers Day Nursery
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Expression of interest for work experience

Please do not submit an expression of interest if you are under the age of 16 as we will be unable to consider your application. 

If you meet the essential criteria, please submit an Expression of Interest by completing the form below.

Please ensure you include all the information required. If you do not meet the criteria or do not send all the necessary information we will not be able to process your request. If your expression of interest meets all criteria you will be sent the relevant application forms for you to complete.

If you do not receive a response within three months of your initial request, you should assume that there is no availability at this time. 

Please note: We only offer a structured work experience programme for medical and nursing placements. Medical work experience programmes are only available to students in Year 12 and above. Please do not submit an expression of interest for any medical related (Doctor/Surgeon/Consultant shadowing) or general nursing placements as we are unable to process these requests.

Applications for summer 2020 placements need to be submitted from March onwards. Any applications submitted before this time will not be processed.

Each expression of interest must include the following information:

Note: Questions marked by * are mandatory

  Yes No
*This is a mandatory field. Are you aware that your form will not be processed if you are looking for a medical placement i.e. Dr/Surgeon or Consultant? Any queries regarding medicine/Doctor's please contact the Medical Education team:
*This is a mandatory field. Are you applying for a non-medical placement? If "yes" at this moment in time your application will not be processed as we are currently not holding any onsite placements. We are only offering virtual experiences such as Live Chats.
*This is a mandatory field. Are you applying for a Live Chat or Virtual Programme? If "Yes" please continue to answer all the following questions and make sure you answer question 17. Please check what you are applying for and check the title and who is hosting the live experience.

  Yes No
*This is a mandatory field. I understand that in order for me to join a Barking Havering and Redbridge Work Experience Live chat I must download MS Teams on the device I intend on using
*This is a mandatory field. I understand that this is an opportunity for me to better my career and I will be kind and courteous during the live chat
*This is a mandatory field. Would you be happy for the session to be recorded so that other students can benefit from this chat?

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