Skip to main navigationSkip to main content
The University of Southampton
Health SciencesPostgraduate study

Oliver Saddler MSc Advanced Clinical Practice, 3rd Year

PG Student

Oliver Saddler's Photo

Hi, I am Oliver and I study MSc Advanced Clinical Practice at the University of Southampton.

I have been able to achieve things I had never previously considered.

Why did you choose to come and study at Southampton?

Southampton is a very well-regarded institution that has an excellent reputation for research with close links to University Hospital Southampton, where I am employed. The access to internationally respected academics and clinicians is second-to-none, the Highfield Campus is easy to get to – I have no need to travel to an institution further away than Southampton as the course here meets all my needs.

What is it like studying here?

I enjoy studying here and look forward to lectures – the course material is delivered by a variety of lecturers, many of whom are practicing clinicians, which adds to the credibility and relevance of what is being taught. Studying with healthcare professionals from different backgrounds has been great, I have learnt a lot from classmates employed in diverse parts of the health service from mental health and primary care to emergency medicine and intensive care. Southampton is a good city for socialising and has everything that I need, links to the New Forest, Isle of Wight and South Coast are easy too.

What is the most inspiring or insightful thing you have learnt or discovered in your time at Southampton?

With support from the university staff that, although I may not be a natural academic there is pleasure to be found in continuous development and with a bit of application, the right support and guidance I have been able to achieve things I had never previously considered.

Please tell us about a moment when you learnt something at Southampton, which reinforced or changed your mind about your direction in life.

I learnt that with the appropriate education and experience, it is possible for paramedics to work in intensive care. As a result, I have recently started a new role in the Neurosciences Intensive Care unit at University Hospital Southampton. This has opened up a whole realm of possibility to me – prior to study at Southampton I had resigned myself to the fact that to progress beyond a certain point as a paramedic I would have to go in to management, which is entirely not the case thanks to the rapidly developing world of Advanced Practice.

How do you rate the study facilities at the University?

The library is a great place to study with plenty of resources and face to face support if you need it. The classrooms are fit for purpose – good lighting, seating, screens etc. There is a broad choice of venues for eating drinking and socialising and having a pool on site is really good for winding down after a day of lectures.

What are you most proud of from your time at Southampton so far?

I am most proud of managing to study at postgraduate level whilst working full time. I have only been able to do this thanks to the support of my employer and understanding of the university – they have always been approachable when I have needed to juggle work-life-study commitments and helped me find solutions.

What do you think you have gained from your studies that you wouldn’t have developed without them?

My ability to apply critical thinking to my day job has improved significantly – I am comfortable searching for and then processing evidence to improve the care I deliver. Reflecting on my practice has been a real positive, some of my most valuable lessons have come from reflecting on what I have done and how I would do it differently in the future.

Have you undertaken any extracurricular activities?

I have not (although the Student Union is very active!)

What will you do with your degree/research after you have finished your studies?

I could be tempted to continue to carry on postgraduate study – I am thinking about the possibility of studying towards a doctorate and will make sure I use the wealth of experience in the Health Sciences faculty to help guide my decisions.

Who will you keep in touch with from Southampton once you graduate and why?

I will keep in touch with my tutor Helen Rushforth as she has been so helpful in giving me advice about my education and career. I have met a number of paramedics during my studies and will try to keep in touch with them – the breadth of opportunity available to paramedics continues to grow and I am always excited to hear about new developments in our profession.

What will you miss the most about being at Southampton once you have finished your studies?

The opportunity of meeting up regularly with other health care professions from a broad range of backgrounds and countries to share experiences and learning opportunities.

Share this profile Share this on Facebook Share this on Twitter Share this on Weibo
Privacy Settings