From Year 10 work experience to studying medicine at Oxford University.

Get In Cornwall is a project that brings together the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust, Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group and Cornwall Council with the aim of showcasing the best opportunities that Cornwall has to offer to help people to Get In, Get On and Go Further in careers in health and care. 

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Will Brebner is one of Get In Cornwall’s brightest success stories. Will attended one of the first Year 10 work experience weeks held at Royal Cornwall Hospital, Truro. He was a pupil at Wadebridge School, with a strong interest in science and, in particular, the human body.

He went on to do a post-16 work experience placement at the hospital, gain a scholarship at top private school, Eton and is now studying medicine at Oxford University.

We caught up with Will to discover more about what sparked his interest in the medical profession, the reality of studying medicine and the advice he would offer to other young people with similar aspirations.

He told us that that his initial desire to pursue a career in medicine was sparked by watching TV documentaries but, it was only by doing work experience that he knew for certain that he wanted to become a doctor.

“I saw a variety of departments, shadowed and talked to lots of the staff, which meant I could see what it was really like – hard work but rewarding with dedicated teams doing their utmost to help people to live longer, more healthy lives.”

So keen was Will to pursue his dream, that he applied for a special scholarship to Eton College to study A Levels, where he was offered a place and awarded a bursary to cover his fees.

“The biggest challenges to entering the medical profession are getting the high exam grades required, as well as the relevant experience to support an application for medical school.”

WILL’S TOP TIPS FOR ANYONE CONSIDERING A CAREER IN MEDICINE

  • Talk to everyone: medical students, current doctors, nurses - they all have helpful and interesting things to say
  • Get work experience and voluntary work in a caring environment to see if you’re suited to it and like it
  • Do a wide range of things to develop your personal skills (volunteering, sports, music etc.) both for interviews but also for yourself as they can help to give you a break mentally and physically from studying
  • Keep up your studies – ultimately, you need solid grades to get through the door
  • Do it for the right reasons – because of interest and passion. It is very hard work so you need to maintain the motivation when finishing off essays and revision in the early hours, and for the career in general. 

He found his time at Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust (RCHT) very useful with the application process for university, using his experiences to inform his personal statement and in interviews. He says that the biggest challenges to entering the medical profession are getting the high exam grades required as well as the relevant experience to support an application for medical school.

And, he’s enjoying his course at Oxford; “It’s very interesting stuff, especially dissections, and I have met an incredible bunch of people.” However, he adds;

“It is hard work, especially when you’re stuck in, writing essays whilst other friends are going out!”

Will is undecided regarding his area of specialism but currently feels it is likely to be hospital medicine rather than working as a GP. He said: “It’s more exciting but I will need to assess this in tandem with work-life balance, I guess time will tell.”

He adds;“ I enjoyed cardiology at RCHT, so that’s what I’d say right now, but this may change considerably – I have a while until I need to decide!”

“It is hard work, especially when you’re stuck in, writing essays whilst other friends are going out!”

The Get In Cornwall website provides a one stop shop for information on careers in healthcare, apprenticeships, volunteering and much more. The project facilitates hundreds of work experience placements in hospitals and other settings every year, covering everything from midwifery to medicine, healthcare science to mental health and physiotherapy to pharmacy. It also offers dedicated work experience weeks for local schools and colleges as well as both hosting and attending numerous events across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

For more information about the Get In Cornwall project or to apply for a health or care work experience placement in Cornwall, please take a look at www.getincornwall.com

 

University, CareersEmily Baulf