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College operating theatre unveiled during event exploring NHS careers

October 19, 2022

Staff from the NHS smiling with large balloons which say 350

Future NHS workers were inspired by a careers event at HSDC Alton which marked the opening of a brand new operating theatre learning space.

Alton College has teamed up with NHS Hampshire and Isle of Wight’s 350+ Careers Programme to create the permanent medical learning environment at the college, giving students year-round learning opportunities to explore all the roles needed to facilitate a successful operation.

The opening of the hub coincided with national T Levels Week, and HSDC students on these new technical courses will have the opportunity to use the operating theatre to enhance their learning.

Hundreds of local students from Anstey Junior School, Eggar’s School, St Lawrence CE Primary School, Alton School and HSDC took part in a careers event at the College on 14 October, which is Allied Health Professionals Day.

Students visited the hub to meet NHS colleagues representing all 14 Allied Health careers, including paramedics, physiotherapists, radiographers and speech and language therapists. 

Ashley Grute, Assistant Principal Vocational Curriculum at HSDC, said: 

Students stood by a hospital bed in the ward

Students in the operating theatre

“We are so proud to be part of this project to promote NHS careers and encourage young people to consider a wide variety of career routes. It’s been fantastic to see our visitors use the operating theatre’s facilities, and we are looking forward to our T Level students having the opportunity to utilise the equipment to enhance their learning on our variety of Health courses. 

“Throughout our Vocational and Technical curriculum, we work hard to make sure our students are prepared for their future careers and have the industry skills they need to succeed. This operating theatre is the latest in a series of investments to equip our students with the high-quality facilities they need.”

As the UK’s biggest employer, the NHS offers more than 350 different career paths and the purpose of the 350+ NHS Careers Programme is to help children and young people explore the huge range of options open to them. 

The programme’s outreach team runs free sessions in schools and education settings, also providing expertise around T Level and Apprenticeship routes into the NHS. 

Following the successful opening of the hub, the NHS Careers Programme will be hosting regular educational events at the facility with young people from across the area.

Kat Millmore-Davies, Education Outreach Lead for the 350+ NHS Careers Programme, said:

“We visited HSDC Alton with our Allied Health team to give students an in-depth introduction to 14 of the amazing careers they can have in the NHS. As the students moved through the operating theatre, they explored roles and tasks based on real-life scenarios, ultimately learning what a vital contribution these roles make to the patient experience. 

“Thank you to Assistant Principal Vocational Curriculum Ashley Grute and the team at HSDC Alton for hosting our first permanent hub for the programme – we know the operating theatre is going to spark a lot of imagination and help inspire the next generation about the career options open to them.”