Lucie started her Physiotherapy Apprenticeship in September 2021 and currently works with the Medical Physiotherapy Team working mainly on wards C5 and D7.
Listen to Lucy and Bryony talk about their experiences of being an apprentice at CUH.
She says that she enjoyed working at CUH as a physiotherapy technical instructor and wanted to find a way that she could continue to work and live in Cambridge as well as continuing to progress her career. If she had taken the direct route to University she says she would have had to take 3 years out of work in order to study, but doing an apprenticeship allows her to do both.
What does a typical day look like in your role?
Lucie says that most of her role at work continues as it would have done before in her band 4 role where she assesses patients and tries to promote their mobility whilst on the ward. She also helps with discharge planning, contacting families and liaising within the Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT). She works alongside both Physio Assistants and qualified Physiotherapists and gets the opportunity to observe the qualified therapists and work towards becoming competent in aspects of a physiotherapists role which she can then incorporate into her work as an apprentice.
What do you enjoy about your role?
Lucie enjoys working in a variety of different specialties including diabetes and renal, and likes that she can incorporate the things that she is learning at university into her day to day role as an apprentice and that she can learn from her fellow therapists. Lucie feels that being hands on with patients, seeing them progress and helping people to recover from their illnesses is very rewarding. Her favourite aspects of the job are the team environment, seeing patients do something that they couldn't do before and learning lots of new things – no two days are ever the same!
What sorts of things do you do for the 20% off the job learning aspect of your apprenticeship?
Lucie spends one day a week at university. In the first term this included half a day of practical classes with a focus on the anatomy and clinical skills linked to the lower limb. In the afternoon the focus was on physiology.
On a Tuesday she has been completing self-study time at home which has mainly involved research into various aspects of human physiology. She has also been writing or preparing for the assessed aspect of the physiology module in which she had to write an essay and lab report, plus she has been revising and watching lectures based on the anatomy that she was learning at university.
Does this involve attending college or is it all completed at work?
Lucie has one day a week which is face to face at university, one day of self-study at home and 3 days a week are spent at work. In her first year she will also have a placement in the 3rd term when she won't go into university.
What are your future intentions?
Lucie would like to remain working at CUH and complete a rotational band 5 position so that she can gain experience in all aspects of hospital physiotherapy. At some stage she also hopes to gain some experience abroad and in other environments.
What advice would you give to others who may be looking to take on an apprenticeship?
I would encourage anyone looking to progress their career to look into taking on an apprenticeship. I would say that it is definitely hard work and requires a lot of organisation. The first term has been tough but also enjoyable.
I think that the apprenticeship is ideal for someone like me who has not been to university before and that people shouldn't be off put by their prior experience. There are people from all backgrounds on the course and whilst those with a previous degree may initially have an advantage, everyone is bought up to the same level and can access support if they need it.