Careers event gives students insight into health professions

Aberdeen has played host to a collaborative event which was organised specifically to give third year school students a unique insight into health professions at a critical decision-making point in their lives.

Careers in Health, which was held at the Suttie Centre, Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, on Wednesday 25 January was jointly organised by the University of Aberdeen (UoA) and Robert Gordon University (RGU).

60 students from 12 schools across the Aberdeen City, Shire and Moray took part in the day-long event, which comprised a series of interactive workshops plus opportunities to network with health professionals and academics from each of the organising bodies.

Introductory and closing statements were delivered by UoA reach project officer, Shawn Webster, and RGU education liaison officer, Lynsey Cumming.

The series of ten workshops were been designed to give participants insights into a broad spectrum of health and medical careers. Each student elected to participate in three workshops across the day, giving them the opportunity to learn more about specific professions that interested them.

Among the workshops on offer were an interactive trauma session which gave the students hands-on experience of using medical equipment such as simulators to demonstrate procedural skills that are taught during the training of healthcare professionals. 

Other workshops in the series focused on specific disciplines, such as diagnostic radiography, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy and physiotherapy – each making use of the equipment and clinical facilities of the Suttie Centre. 

During the lunch break, participants networked with academics and professionals from both universities plus NHS Grampian who engaged with the students at presentation stalls set up in the venue’s main reception area.

Lynsey and Shawn worked together throughout all stages of the event, marking it as a truly collaborative effort between the higher education institutions.

Explaining the ethos behind Careers in Health, Lynsey said: “A core element of the day was to inform students as to how they can best prepare for entry into highly competitive professions. This was at the heart of the workshops, such as in the afternoon seminar which offered advice on how to write a competitive application form for medical schools.”

Shawn added: “It’s vital that we provide this kind of opportunity for students at this stage so that they can make informed decisions on their future careers. With entry to higher education increasingly competitive, preparation is key. The interactive format of the workshops provided a fun and effective way to get students to start thinking about their choices now.”      

  • Cults Academy
  • Hazlehead Academy
  • Speyside High School
  • Forres Academy
  • St Margaret’s School for Girls
  • Oldmacher Academy
  • Torry Academy
  • Keith Grammar School
  • Alford Academy
  • Banchory Academy
  • Milne’s High School
  • Kemnay Academy


The full workshop programme was as follows:

Diagnostic Radiography

Staff from RGU’s School of Health Sciences will offer students the chance to look at a variety of x-ray and radiographic images, to learn about the technologies that are used to produce them and the range of exciting opportunities within radiography clinical practice.

Getting into Medicine

Dr Kath Greaves, Associate Dean of Admissions for Medicine at the UoA, will discusses what medical applicants need in order to write a competitive application form. This session will include information on the academic grades, work experience and research required.

Interactive Trauma Session

Students will have the opportunity to participate in an interactive session to use medical equipment such as simulators to demonstrate procedural skills in training of healthcare practitioners.

Medical Science and Research
Medical science researchers from the UoA will deliver interactive sessions outlining the research currently being conducted at the University.

Nursing and Midwifery 

Students will be able to talk to qualified nurses from RGU about the everyday challenges they face and see what a career in modern nursing and midwifery has to offer.

Nutrition and Nutrition and Dietetics

RGU staff will explore the complex reasons for food choices, and how nutritionists work to help people make healthy choices.  The workshop will also give an insight into how dieticians support individuals nutritionally or to manage their disease process by changing the foods they eat. 

Occupational Therapy

In this workshop, run by academic staff from RGU, students will be able to explore some of the equipment and aids to daily living which the occupational therapists use with clients and patients.


In this workshop students will have the opportunity to learn about what a pharmacist really does.  Staff from RGU will also help explore how the body works; the effects of disease; and how drugs are delivered to and affect the body.


Within this workshop, participants will get the chance to see and experience some physiotherapy treatments. Physiotherapists from RGU will be on hand to explain some of the techniques they use to treat patients with sports injuries, movement problems and pain. 

Speech and Language Therapy
UoA academics will explain the ways in which speech and language therapy is used to assess and treat speech, language and communication problems in people of all ages to enable them to communicate to the best of their ability. This session will introduce the skills and techniques used by Speech and Language therapists.


Issued by the Communications Team, Office of External Affairs, University of Aberdeen, King's College, Aberdeen. Tel: (01224) 272014.

Issued on: 25 January 2012

Contact: Jennifer Phillips