Yasmin Khanagha, BSc Child Nursing Student

Yasmin Khanagha

I decided to study at the University of Leeds for several reasons. Firstly, most of my placements would be based at the Leeds Children’s Hospital, a regional specialist centre for many specialities in paediatrics such as liver and renal transplant, PICU and cystic fibrosis. This meant I would be looking after children with complex conditions where I wouldn’t be able to find elsewhere. Secondly, The University of Leeds pioneers in research around health, which means I get to be taught the most relevant information from my academics.

I only found my calling for child nursing recently (unlike some of my other colleagues who wanted to be nurses since they were little). I’ve always enjoyed working with children, but it’s seeing them recovering that makes child nursing really special. I also enjoy developing a relationship with families and parents.

For me, nursing is truly is a job like no other. You are part of someone’s life at their most vulnerable and you (along with many others) are helping this family going through a difficult time. Nursing overall is truly a privilege. 

I was lucky enough to read the opportunity about becoming a student editor for the Nursing Times on Twitter. Being a student child nurse editor means that I am one of the 6 student editors who write a weekly article for the student nursing times, a part of the nursing times. My favourite part of this role is the fact that I can write about issues that are important to me, such as islamophobia and apolitically in healthcare, I also enjoy reading comments from other students.

I was lucky enough to be able to be a second speaker for the RCN Student Debates. The event was an oxford Style Debate, with the motion “This house believes that patients should not always come first”. I had to speak again the motion (IE patients should come first), referring to the 6Cs, and the reasoning why many nurses enter the process in the first place. It was hard, as I did support the motion to an extent. I was nervous as it was a national event, but everyone at the event was nice and very supportive. Speaking at a national event definitely improved my public speaking skills.

I don’t think there has just been one highlight at my time at Leeds. If we are talking strictly course wise, then placements are a highlight! I’ve been lucky in the sense that I’ve enjoyed all my placements and made the most out of them. From doing a health promotion event at a local school around bullying to leading care and building a rapport with families – it’s the smaller things that make my course so worthwhile.

I’ve had loads of unique experiences at Leeds, but if I had to talk about one that clearly sets me apart from other students it would probably be LeadLUU. LeadLUU is when students like myself, campaign in order to be elected as one of the 7 student executives at the University’s Union, it was extremely tiring, and fortunately, I had amazing support throughout the campaign. Whilst I didn’t win the election, I learned many skills such as resilience, communication skills, working under pressure, and even budgeting!

If I could give a piece of advice to someone thinking about coming to Leeds to study, it would probably be to make sure you know what you want to achieve at University. Everyone comes into University with different goals and plans, and mine was to make sure I get the most out of it.

I’ve lived half my life in sunny Brighton/Guernsey and the other half at Wakefield/Leeds. It’s different, but I do love Leeds – the combination of a city with the countryside a short drive away is a plus. I always say that I’m a Yorkshire lass without a Yorkshire accent, as despite living in Yorkshire for a while, I’ve still got a southern accent.