Medical Sciences graduate Francesca Saleh says that studying Medical Sciences strengthened her determination to become a doctor.
Medical Sciences is a 3-year long course which meant I had a very long time to understand, learn and ground my anatomy, physiology and beginnings of pathophysiology for when I started studying Medicine. This has allowed me to focus more of my time and efforts into other skills and abilities required to be a doctor, such as practicing history taking, physical examinations and clinical skills, and improving my formulation of differential diagnoses, treatment options and management plans.
During my first year studying the Medical Sciences degree at USW, I had a weeklong placement with nurses and in my second year, I had a weeklong placement with junior doctors, both at the Royal Glamorgan Hospital. These placements allowed me to gain an understanding of the roles of both nurses and doctors on a hospital ward and how they work together as a team to ensure the best patient care.
It also allowed me to understand the importance of multidisciplinary teams and how they provide optimal individualised care for patients. Having placements meant I could start applying the knowledge I had learnt from lectures in a medical setting as well as building on this knowledge clinically. I was also lucky enough to observe a total knee replacement. The surgical team was very happy to have me in theatre and the lead surgeon was explaining the operation as he was doing it, showing me the anatomical features of the knee, and was happy to answer any questions I had throughout the operation.
I absolutely loved my time at USW! The course was fantastic, and I had a brilliant student life. The knowledge I have learnt from the course has prepared me so much for my studies at Medical School, the lecturers were all enthusiastic and taught the course material well, and the course leader (Dr Lewis Fall) was incredibly passionate and determined to support and prepare us to give us the best possible chance with our applications and interviews.
As part of my final year at USW, I took on the opportunity to become one of the presidents of the Medical Preparation Society and the course was very supportive in helping me balance my workload with running the society.
I took full advantage of my student life at USW. The SU was a great place to go for so many things, for example, to watch the Six Nations (I’m not even a rugby fan but I loved the atmosphere), societies hosted lots of events in the hall which was great to meet new people, a place to hang out with friends as a break from studying, and of course the club where I made loads of friends that I still keep in contact with now.
Glyntaff campus provides a lot of good study spaces, has an extensive library with books and literature relevant to Medical Sciences so you don’t really need to buy your own textbooks (unless you want your own copies) and has rooms that can be booked out so you can use them for study sessions or teaching with friends (mostly done through the Medical Preparation Society). The campus also has very well-equipped laboratories where we developed a huge set of skills, so if you are interested in going into research this will give you a great head start!