Hannah achieves dream of becoming Paramedic

Former A Level Biology, PE and Psychology student Hannah Harrington-Hardy begins her dream career as a qualified Paramedic for the NHS.

Hannah, who has recently graduated from University of Plymouth with a 1st class honours in Paramedic Science and previously attended Budehaven Community School, shared how she is feeling to have graduated: “I feel like I have finally accomplished my end goal of becoming a qualified paramedic. It has taken blood, sweat and tears but it’s all been worth it. It’s allowed me to reflect on my journey getting there and see how every step of the way including school and college has helped me to get where I am today. It feels surreal now going into the world of full time employment within the NHS and away from my normal study routine so I think that will definitely take some getting used to!!

“I thoroughly enjoyed university, I was able to meet lots of new people and gain a new sense of independence. I participated in the netball society which enabled me to carry on netball after college. My degree involved 50% placement which gave me great practical experience and a different side to learning.

“All my experiences at Callywith set me up for university, I thoroughly enjoyed my time at college. My tutor and other teachers at Callywith helped me understand the UCAS process, and the importance of university open days. My tutor would prepare questions and I would participate in ‘mock’ interviews which benefited me when it came down to the actual interviews and I genuinely believe this helped me get 5/5 university offers.

“I am now employed by the South Western Ambulance Service as a frontline Paramedic working in the North Devon Area. At the moment, I hope to find my feet and settle into the job, get to know all my colleagues and enjoy being qualified. I hope in the future to complete a Masters to further my knowledge and allow me to progress into advanced rolls within the NHS. I am currently completing a month volunteering in Nepal alongside other Paramedics. We are working within schools, hospitals and the Nepal Ambulance Service in order to improve education and global health. I have been teaching children and their communities about how to use basic everyday objects as medical aids such as cardboard and bamboo. I have so far really enjoyed this type of work and hope to continue to do something similar in the future.

“My advice to anyone who is interested in becoming a Paramedic is to know there are two routes: the university route where you study BsC (Hons) Paramedic Science for 3 years or you can join the ambulance service as an ECA (emergency care assistant) and you can complete an internal apprenticeship after 2 years to become a paramedic. Both routes are excellent it just depends what fits yours lifestyle.

“I would also say, gain as much healthcare/social experience as you can (such as a residential home) to understand if shift work and the medical field is for you. And go for it!! It’s a rewarding job that constantly keeps you on your toes everyday.”