Francesca Clarke, Former NHS/Healthcare Ambassador
Francesca Clarke participated in the Better Learners Better Workers healthcare programme working with Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust. She now works at the Northern General Hospital after completing the programme and then taking on a Level 2 Business Administration Apprenticeship with the hospital which led to her current role as a Clerical Assistant.
For Francesca, the two-week work experience was the highlight of her time as a Better Learners Better Workers Ambassador: “I worked with the Clinical Engineering Department and I gained experience at the Hallamshire Hospital, some at the Jessop’s and some at the Children’s Hospital. We did things such as building blood pressure machines and testing the new thermometers that came in to make sure they could go out to be used. I kept a log of all the things I did and the skills I’d used, then typed it up and it became part of my Better Learners Better Workers Skills Passport.”
Francesca believes that her communication skills were improved on the programme: “I feel that I’ve become more confident now. Before, in an interview I’d be really shy and I couldn’t give eye contact because I felt really awkward. Now, if I was to go to an interview I’d feel like I’d be able to do it more confidently. The communication skills also help you on the phone and when people come to the reception desk and you’re meeting face to face. I feel like I came out of my shell a bit more.”
Going forward Francesca plans to study the NVQ Level 3 in Business and Administration. Whilst she doesn’t know where she wants to go with her career, she highly recommends the Better Learners Better Workers programme as a starting point: “It opens another door. If you don’t know what you want to do it still helps you. I’m happy with where I am because I feel like I’m doing something and I’m achieving something every day. Somebody could just phone up and want to change an appointment and we’ll have a chat and you feel like you’ve made someone’s day a bit better. It’s things like that which make it a rewarding job.”