Jump to accessibility statement Skip to content

Rachel Kelly

Sunderland, UK

BSc (Hons) Children's and Young People's Nursing Practice


While she loved her job working as an NHS Early Years Practitioner, Rachel Kelly knew her true passion was to become a children’s nurse, so made the big decision to leave her job and go into full-time studying. After attending an Open Day at Sunderland and seeing the fantastic nursing facilities for herself, she enrolled onto the BSc (Hons) Children’s and Young People’s Nursing Practice course and is really enjoying the practical aspects of the degree so far.

I worked as an Early Years Practitioner for the NHS for eight years and loved it, so it was a big decision for me to leave and go into full-time studying, but I knew it was what I needed to do to achieve my dream of becoming a children’s nurse. After I attended an Open Day at the University of Sunderland and saw all the amazing facilities they offered, I knew it would be worth taking the leap. Another reason I chose Sunderland over other universities was due to the way the degree is structured – I like how the teaching blocks and placement blocks are separate, plus the April start worked well for me.

My favourite part of the BSc (Hons) Children’s and Young People’s Nursing Practice course is the simulations, as I feel practical sessions are my preferred way of working. I’m really enjoying learning something new every day. It’s still early days for me on my journey as a student nurse and although I’m undecided about what my future career might look like, once I’ve got to experience a wider range of placements, I’m sure I’ll have a better idea.

To any mature students, like me, whose dream is to become a children’s nurse but might be thinking they’re too old for a career change or unsure how they’ll fit studying in alongside other responsibilities – just take the leap and go for it! Yes, it’s challenging, but it really is worth it. I would recommend attending an Open Day to see the amazing facilities for yourself and take the opportunity to chat to the lecturers who’ll be able to answer any questions you might have.

My experience studying nursing at Sunderland so far has been really positive. All the staff are so supportive, approachable, and knowledgeable, and having this support alongside the facilities and library services has been invaluable in helping me develop my study skills.”

Published 21 November 2023

More case studies