Double award win for the University of Derby at the Student Nursing Times Awards 2022

8 June 2022

The University of Derby has been recognised at the Student Nursing Times Awards 2022 - taking home accolades for ‘Best Student Experience’ and ‘Outstanding Contribution to Student Affairs’.

Community Chesterfield, which is a partnership between the University of Derby and Derbyshire Voluntary Action, won the ‘Best Student Experience’ award, which recognises universities and providers of nurse and/or midwife education that put an emphasis on the overall student experience. This focus ensures students are supported in a learning community that is nurturing of the whole person as well as being conducive to encouraging excellence in learning and sharing best practice.

People at the awards ceremony
Community Chesterfield Partnership members and Student Nursing Times Awards judges

Faith Vargas, Lecturer in Pre-qualifying Health Care at the University of Derby, said:

“Working with Community Chesterfield over the last few years has been such a rewarding part of my role. I have made many new connections that have led to positive experiences for students and the Community Chesterfield team is always eager to collaborate.

Ultimately, the partnership with Derbyshire Voluntary Action has enabled us to widen our students’ knowledge and exposure to the voluntary sector, it has increased their learning potential and provided them with a unique insight into the role that the community has within the health sector.

Winning this award is recognition of all the hard work that has gone into this partnership, and it will send a positive message about the University of Derby to future students and other educational institutions. It feels incredible to be a part of this work and I am so proud of the team who have contributed to making this happen.”

Jennifer Raschbauer, Community Chesterfield project manager, added:

“We are absolutely thrilled to have won the ‘Best Student Experience’ award.

Over the last three years we have created almost 4,000 meaningful connections between the University of Derby and local voluntary sector organisations, so it really recognises the hard work of everyone who has been involved in the Community Chesterfield project – colleagues in the voluntary sector and those at the University of Derby.”

The ‘Outstanding Contribution to Student Affairs’ category was won by Derby’s Kayty Richards, who is a first-year BSc (Hons) Midwifery student and president of the University’s Midwifery Society 'Midwifery Rocks'.

Awards ceremony
Kayty Richards (in the middle) and Student Nursing Times Awards judges

The Outstanding Contribution to Student Affairs award seeks to recognise a student who has made an exceptional contribution to student affairs during their time at university and judges were impressed with Kayty’s wide range of activities linked to this.

Commenting on her award, Kayty said:

"I was speechless when I heard my name called out as winner of the Outstanding Contribution to Student Affairs category! I feel incredibly proud, and it is a moment I will never forget.

I hope this achievement inspires others to follow their passion and that it can highlight the importance of kindness and peer support, and the power it has to make a difference in a multitude of ways.

I'd like to thank everyone who has supported and believed in me in my journey so far, including the incredible judging panel who I feel privileged to have met."

Jayne Leverton, Lead Midwife for Education at the University of Derby, added:

“Kayty began her Midwifery journey in September 2021 and from the outset has been interested in student affairs, demonstrated through her involvement in the Union of Students, and forming a Midwifery society.

She has been instrumental in encouraging the group to be involved in events, and with her positive nature and enthusiastic approach, this has been highly successful. I am very proud that Kayty has won this award. It is so deserved, and it recognises her commitment to both the profession and her peers.”

The Student Nursing Times Awards brought together close to 500 talented student nurses, education providers and mentors at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London.

The University was shortlisted in multiple categories, taking home two of the top prizes on the night.

Steve Ford, Editor of Nursing Times, said:

“Congratulations to all our winners at the Student Nursing Times Awards 2022. Once again, I was really impressed by the strength of entries that we received this year.

Our awards recognise a group of outstanding students on their journey to entering the nursing profession, as well as all those who support them along the way, including lecturers, universities and healthcare providers.

They celebrate students from all over the UK and at different stages of the nursing education journey, from first-years to those who have recently qualified. Their innovation and achievements so early in their career already mark them out as sources of inspiration and rising stars for the future.

Meanwhile, the winning higher education institutions and placement providers demonstrate the constant evolution and development in the way the next generation of nurses are educated, equipping them to deal with the challenges they will face and to provide the best care possible.”

See the shortlist for the Student Nursing Times Awards 2022.

Read Kayty’s blog about finding her voice as a future midwife.

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