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Nursing graduates share a bright future in health on the Gold Coast


Jessica Nelson
2 May 2018

Nicholas Drew and Jackson Chetwynd-Jones are two Southern Cross University Gold Coast graduates who are now forging their career paths in the world of nursing. Both students undertook placements at the John Flynn Private Hospital as part of their training which led to both of them being offered placements at the hospital of choice.

Jackson says: “I applied directly to John Flynn and found out I had an offer for interview. I thought my interview was the best I’d done which was exciting. I then got a call from their graduate coordinator Jan Taplin offering me a two-year position - I couldn’t believe it!

“Right now I’m on a six-month rotation on the medical ward, then I will move in to a different ward. After that I will stay on for another year and become part of a team.

“I love being able to work in such a beautiful work environment with incredible minds. I’m always still learning - every day is a new challenge where I am learning something new. One of most rewarding things about it is finally being able to help people with my degree.

“This job is so close to home and right near where I studied at Southern Cross University. It works out perfectly as I live right on the border in Tweed Heads and am able to stay where I am without having to move. It was great doing my placement at John Flynn which really helped with getting a job there.

“I can see Southern Cross University across the airport runway from where I now work at John Flynn. I love this end of the Coast –so close to the beach and right near our famous surf breaks. This area of the Coast is the best place I’ve lived.

“My friend Nick (Drew) from Southern Cross University also got a graduate position at John Flynn in Theatre, and I often get a handover from him or spot him on my way past. It’s great having one of my university mates also working here.”

It wasn’t always smooth sailing for Jackson and there were challenges as he navigated his way through his studies. “It wasn’t easy going on extended placements where you have to balance it with work and other commitments. Clinical simulations can also be daunting at first because you want to get them right, but as you get used to them you gain more confidence before heading into real-life situations.”

“I also broke my arm just before I went on my final placement in my last few weeks of university, but I still wanted to be able to go on placement and register to graduate on time.

Thankfully Southern Cross University was able to fit me into another block during last period of prac and were then able to fast track me for graduation which also enabled me to apply for the job I now have.”

John Flynn Private Hospital Graduate Coordinator Jan Taplin says the hospital couldn’t be happier with both Nick and Jackson. “Even though it has only been a short period of time that both gentleman have worked for us here at John Flynn we have known them for some time.

“Nicholas completed placements originally as an enrolled nursing student prior to moving on to become a Registered Nursing student and Jackson completed his Registered Nurse placement with us in his second year.

“Already they are becoming valued members of the team at John Flynn in the role of Registered Nurses. We are pleased that they have joined us and are looking forward to a bright future for these professional team members.”