Occupational therapist Holly-Anna scoops top prize

Shauna Loughran


Shauna Loughran

BALLYMENA woman Holly-Anna Steele (22) recently graduated from the University of Cumbria’s Occupational Therapy BSc (Hons) programme and was awarded a prestigious prize.

Holly-Anna received the ‘Undergraduate Prize for Excellence in Placement’ for gaining consistently high marks while in placement.

Over the course of three years, students carry out 1000 working hours on placement. In the last three placements, Anna achieved the top AA category, and the last placement she scored 100%.

“I feel honoured to have won the prize; there were so many good OT students who could equally have deserved it,” said Holly-Anna.

She continued: “I can't recommend the University of Cumbria enough. You get so much support from lecturers, they are so helpful.

“The small cohort sizes help you to become close and mean you support each other. It's been a really positive experience for me.”

Occupational Therapy BSc (Hons) is fully accredited by the Royal College of Occupational Therapists and approved by the Health and Care Professions Council.

The programme is ranked 8th for graduate employability nationally at 88%, according to the Complete University Guide.

“The occupational therapy programmes at University of Cumbria enable our motivated students to become skilful, talented, committed health professionals,” Michael Doak, Senior Lecturer in Occupational Therapy at the University of Cumbria, said.

“They take up jobs locally and nationally assisting people to manage and recover from all sorts of injury, illness and disadvantage.

“Spanning many age groups from working with children, adults and older adults in a variety of health and social care organisations.

“We are proud of the contribution our graduates make to their local communities in assisting people overcome problems in their everyday functioning.”

He added: “Holly- Anna has consistently performed at a very high standard on her placements in health and social care settings, displaying skill, dedication and enthusiasm.

“She resoundingly deserves to be recognised through this placement excellence award.”

Holly-Anna has secured employment as an occupational therapist in paediatrics at Furness General Hospital in Barrow, Cumbria which she'll begin work in August.

Holly-Anna will also be stepping aboard the university’s Clearing Bus at the end of this month, which is transporting the university's courses, tutors, staff and alumni off campus and out to towns and cities across Northern England and Ireland.

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