Choosing a career as a nurse tutor

Nicky Genders is head of the school of care sciences at the University of South Wales, responsible for pre-registration nursing and midwifery programmes.  She talks to Colin Parish about her career so far

When Nicky Genders began her career as a learning disability nurse she was thrown in at the deep end. Now she is head of the school of care sciences at the University of South Wales, responsible for pre-registration nursing and midwifery programmes.  Here, she talks to Colin Parish about her career so far and her research into nursing identities

Abstract

Nicky Genders began her learning disability nurse training in Leicester in the early 1980s just as the old long-stay hospitals were about to be closed down.

‘I trained in a college of nursing funded by the NHS and based in a large, long-stay hospital,’ she says.

‘My first workplace was an all-male ward comprising 40 men of different ages and abilities. The staff said: “Here you go, get on with the bathing and people’s care needs’. I was 17 and a half, and it was a bit of a shock.

‘You would walk into the bathroom area and somebody would be in the bath, another would be brushing their teeth, somebody else was in the shower and another was on the loo. There was no privacy. The ward had no toilet doors and everyone’s toothbrushes went into a pot. I knew something was wrong and, to be fair, so did most of the staff.’

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This article was published under the original title 'Putting people first' in Learning Disability Practice, 2 March 2015, volume 18, issue 2. 

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