From education to employment

HSDC Alton and South Downs students help with lateral flow testing

@Be_HSDC carried out over 12,000 lateral flow tests in the first few weeks of this half term and students on the Alton and South Downs campuses were a deciding factor in making that effort a success.

Everyone involved with administering the tests was required to take and pass a series of online assessments before taking part. Leona Berry, Vice Principal – Organisational Development & People, coordinated the testing schedule across the College, “I have nothing but high praise for our students who helped with the COVID testing. They were outstanding – incredibly professional and very keen to learn and to help. Some came in on their days off and offered to do extra sessions to help ensure we had all the required slots covered. The students developed a range of skills including self-confidence and team working through this process, which will help them in their future careers or university applications. For some who were able to count this as work experience, it will be great for their CV and was a great way to set them up for the world of work.”

The students are studying for a range of qualifications. HSDC South Downs student Alex Denton, studying for a Health & Social Care Level 3 Diploma, said: “I got involved because I believe it was a brilliant experience and so beneficial to what’s going on in the world at the moment. I loved getting stuck in and carrying out the testing process.” HSDC Alton student Darcie Gibbon, in her first year studying a Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Health & Social Care, felt much the same way, “I enjoyed taking part and contributing to a team. I got really close with my class and learned new skills like communicating, teamwork and a boost of confidence.” Alton classmate Louisa Murphy agreed, “I really enjoyed it because we worked as a team. I also thought the work experience was very beneficial as I got to experience health and social care skills. I also liked how I could communicate with individuals and ensure they feel welcomed. I believe it was an excellent opportunity to participate in.”

Leona believes that the process would not have gone as smoothly without the students’ involvement. “The students had a ‘can do’ attitude which made the process much simpler. They very quickly got comfortable with working with each other and also with speaking with those taking the tests, putting them at ease in what could to some people be a difficult process. All of the feedback we’ve received has been incredibly positive, stating how professional they all were.”

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