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Thinking of retraining as a midwife... Mature student

33, 1 previous degree in a non medical subject, 10 year career in data analysis, 4 kids and currently a Band 3 Theatre HCA... Any advice on how I go about training to be a midwife?

I fell in love with midwifery whilst having my own babies and it's been a niggling passion that's not left and only got worse and really want to qualify and work with mums!

I'm looking to put things in place to gain relevant experience before I apply. I have requested a short work experience placement on my hospitals maternity ward just to affirm to myself it's what I want to do. I have then requested to "volunteer" on the Matty ward for 6 months (around my HCA shifts) using our hospitals volunteering scheme. In my current role I work in the theare teams that perform the emergency and elective c-sections in theatre, so I have a small amount of experience of observing midwife care and contributing myself to the care of mothers and their babies.

I've got that far but I don't know what my options are in terms of placements (can't travel far due to having young kids), funding a second degree, degree vs apprenticeship. I'm worried it will be impossible and financially/logistically not viable.

I know this is something I need to to pursue otherwise I will regret not doing this when I'm older...

Any help, advice, tips or tricks are greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Charlotte x
Original post by Maisiesmum18
33, 1 previous degree in a non medical subject, 10 year career in data analysis, 4 kids and currently a Band 3 Theatre HCA... Any advice on how I go about training to be a midwife?
I fell in love with midwifery whilst having my own babies and it's been a niggling passion that's not left and only got worse and really want to qualify and work with mums!
I'm looking to put things in place to gain relevant experience before I apply. I have requested a short work experience placement on my hospitals maternity ward just to affirm to myself it's what I want to do. I have then requested to "volunteer" on the Matty ward for 6 months (around my HCA shifts) using our hospitals volunteering scheme. In my current role I work in the theare teams that perform the emergency and elective c-sections in theatre, so I have a small amount of experience of observing midwife care and contributing myself to the care of mothers and their babies.
I've got that far but I don't know what my options are in terms of placements (can't travel far due to having young kids), funding a second degree, degree vs apprenticeship. I'm worried it will be impossible and financially/logistically not viable.
I know this is something I need to to pursue otherwise I will regret not doing this when I'm older...
Any help, advice, tips or tricks are greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
Charlotte x


I’m not a specialist on this (retired manager, NHS workforce), so hopefully someone a little closer to midwifery operations will reply.

First of all, well done on beginning to think this through. It’s not easy when you’re limited by other commitments, and tremendously brave.

Have a regular look on NHS Jobs website. Midwifery degree apprenticeships do get advertised, although they are rare. I saw one only last week although it now seems to have disappeared.

Have you considered a midwifery support job with training attached while you work this through? Having a midwifery support role (also advertised on NHS Jobs) should give you an advantage on application to either training pathway, traditional or apprenticeship. You could have a chat to senior staff when you do your ‘taster’?

What I’m hoping is that someone on this site will come back to you with advice on your first degree and whether that could be considered for the apprenticeship, ‘traditional’ undergraduate or Master’s level pre-registration midwifery courses.

In the meantime, the other option is to find a midwifery programme lead in the closest university to email or have an informal chat with on your best way forward with career development.

I really wish you luck. Do persist with this, because we have a shortage of midwives, so folk with a passion should be encouraged!
Reply 3
Dear Charlotte,
I don't think your age should defer you from pursuing another profession. However, I know that it can be tough becoming a clinical student on rotations whilst having a family with small kids (I am a physician with 2 kids).
I am not familiar with UK training for midwifery. In Sweden only certified nurses can pursue this qualification.
One of my best friends recently started midwife training as a very mature student after years of longing only to find out that the program was not adjusted to her sometimes staying home with sick kids.... A big disappointment for her. Also consider whether you are prepared to work nights, weekends and holidays for years to come, your potential salary, and whether chances are good of finding "9 to 5 "jobs if you'd want them.

My best advice would be to talk to the midwives where you volunteer since they have the insider information.

Good luck!
Original post by Maisiesmum18
33, 1 previous degree in a non medical subject, 10 year career in data analysis, 4 kids and currently a Band 3 Theatre HCA... Any advice on how I go about training to be a midwife?
I fell in love with midwifery whilst having my own babies and it's been a niggling passion that's not left and only got worse and really want to qualify and work with mums!
I'm looking to put things in place to gain relevant experience before I apply. I have requested a short work experience placement on my hospitals maternity ward just to affirm to myself it's what I want to do. I have then requested to "volunteer" on the Matty ward for 6 months (around my HCA shifts) using our hospitals volunteering scheme. In my current role I work in the theare teams that perform the emergency and elective c-sections in theatre, so I have a small amount of experience of observing midwife care and contributing myself to the care of mothers and their babies.
I've got that far but I don't know what my options are in terms of placements (can't travel far due to having young kids), funding a second degree, degree vs apprenticeship. I'm worried it will be impossible and financially/logistically not viable.
I know this is something I need to to pursue otherwise I will regret not doing this when I'm older...
Any help, advice, tips or tricks are greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
Charlotte x

Hi

How can I assist you with your idea of becoming a midwife.....
Any questions I can help with please don't hesitate in contacting me and I will do my best to answer them for you.
You can PM me if you want to.
NHS registered midwife.
Original post by Tracey_W
Hi
How can I assist you with your idea of becoming a midwife.....
Any questions I can help with please don't hesitate in contacting me and I will do my best to answer them for you.
You can PM me if you want to.
NHS registered midwife.

Hi Tracey, thanks for the reply. I'm not sure what an apprenticeship in Midwifery would entail and how is it different to studying for a midwifery degree? Also is their funding available for midwifery degrees?

Thanks,
Charlotte
Original post by Maisiesmum18
Hi Tracey, thanks for the reply. I'm not sure what an apprenticeship in Midwifery would entail and how is it different to studying for a midwifery degree? Also is their funding available for midwifery degrees?

Thanks,
Charlotte

If you would get your finance through SFE, then a midwifery degree is an exception course and you would be eligible for undergraduate finance (both tuition fee loan and maintenance loan) despite already having a degree. If eligible for student finance and you choose to study at a uni in England, then you could also apply to the NHS Learning Support Fund which provides and annual training grant of £5000 plus other benefits. The finance available is different if you don't live in England and have to apply to SFW, SAAS or SFNI.
Hello again Charlotte.
You asked what midwifery degree apprenticeships entail. Bit of a long answer here, but accurate.
In England, midwifery apprentices are in effect sponsored employees, not full-time students, although the course has the same outcome.
Apprentices complete a programme awarding the same midwifery degree and registration with the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC), as a traditional student.
Degree apprenticeships may be longer than 3-year standard degrees, students are paid a salary to live and tuition fees are paid by the employer. Pay grades are the same on attaining a first job, whether you qualified through a traditional route or an apprenticeship.

Please read the advert via the link I posted earlier, for a degree midwife apprenticeship with Lewisham & Greenwich NHS Trust, posted on NHS Jobs.
Although the advert is closed, the job description and person spec give an idea of what’s required.

If considering a traditional university student route (with loans), may I suggest you look at MSc Midwifery pre-registration programmes on UCAS?
This is still a 3 year degree, you would register with the NMC on completion but with a higher level qualification, which would help career promotion later.
You didn’t say what subject your original degree is in. I haven’t seen specific subjects requested for the pre-registration MSc (except not wanting nursing), so you should be ok on that front. A 2:1 undergraduate level or above is required.
You would have to check on the UCAS website for providing universities and eligibility; they are rare so may not be available where you live.

I realise that placements are an issue when you have children, so you’d need to raise this during the application process. I can’t help with details of placements or teaching, hopefully someone else will reply on that.
Just to reassure, many women with children change career to retrain as midwives, so whichever route you take, the organisers should be able to support.
(edited 1 month ago)
Original post by Maisiesmum18
Hi Tracey, thanks for the reply. I'm not sure what an apprenticeship in Midwifery would entail and how is it different to studying for a midwifery degree? Also is their funding available for midwifery degrees?
Thanks,
Charlotte
Hi Charlotte ☺️ ☺️

I haven't dealt with apprenticeship as our student midwives are all university based as I think it is more a English course.
First of all you need to try and get a local health trust hospital to be willing to take you on with the apprenticeship course.
You might be best to do the university degree route and getting the financial help mentioned by narrow in reply 6. As the university will do all the arrangements for placements for you unlike the apprenticeship you have to convince your local health trust to take you on.

If you were a Scottish applicant then if successful with getting a university place then you'll be able to apply for the SAAS bursary of £10,000 per year plus any other financial help that was available for you to claim for.
For information, Lewisham & Greenwich (London) advert, closes 20 May 2024.

https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showpost.php?p=99435162

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