Could you step up in a pandemic?
How Swansea’s students stepped up for the region GRADUATING INTO A PANDEMIC
From study hacks to where to live - we’ve got it covered GETTING READY FOR UNIVERSITY
Big Data and Public Health research in COVID-19
April 2021 | Vol 02 Pandemic Edition
HEALTH AND WELLBEING OPEN DAYS 7
Our one million pound pioneering project provides state-of-the-art teaching and research facilities
HEALTH AND WELLBEING
Gain on-campus placement experience and benefit the local community
Work with real patients using top-of-the-range equipment
In this issue
Welcome from Professor Keith Lloyd Global Challenges: Healthcare
4 5 6 8
6 ways we’ve adapted Spotlight on: Study Skills Why I chose Swansea Nursing in a Pandemic
10 14 16 17 18
Life in Lockdown: Sleep and Dreams
Spotlight on: Self Care Life after Lockdown
ON THE COVER: Part-time student nurse, Jade Thomas, is also an Operation Department Support Worker at Swansea Bay University Health Board’s Morriston Hospital. Throughout the pandemic, she stepped up to provide care to critiallly ill COVID-19 patients. Cover Image: Jade Thomas
19 How your Coronadiary could go down in History 20 Spotlight on: Foundation Year 22 This is Swansea: a Local Guide 24 Why Wales? An International Perspective 26 Global Challenges: Research 29 Making Headlines 30 Microneedle Skin Patches to Administer Vaccines 32 Global Challenges: Public Health 33 Study with us 34
CONTACT Swansea University Singleton Park
Teaching Excellence Framework
Swansea SA2 8PP
+44(0)1792 295111 firstname.lastname@example.org swansea.ac.uk
FUNDING YOUR STUDIES
Mae’r ddogfen hon ar gael yn Gymraeg hefyd
PUTTING OTHERS FIRST...
GLOBAL CHALLENGES: Healthcare AT THE HEIGHT OF THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC, OVER 1000 STUDENTS VOLUNTEERED TO HELP HEALTH SERVICE COLLEAGUES
Welcome OUT OF EVERY ADVERSITY, COMES OPPORTUNITY. HERE AT SWANSEA UNIVERSITY WE HAVE RISEN TO EVERY CHALLENGE AND COME TO FIND GREAT RESILIENCE. WELCOME TO THE PANDEMIC EDITION OF PULSE MAGAZINE.
A group of Graduate Entry Medicine students provided free emergency childcare to NHS key workers alongside their studies
HOW UV ROBOTS ARE REVOLUTIONISING THE WAY WE DISINFECT Swansea-based Evolve Raybotix has launched UVC disinfection robots in the UK in response to the increasing focus on keeping spaces safe. These robots are being distributed exclusively in the UK via Evolve Raybotix based in the Institute of Life Science at Swansea University. FOUR SWANSEA UNIVERSITY PROJECTS AIMED AT MAKING A LIFE-SAVING DIFFERENCE TO PATIENTS RECEIVE MRC FUNDS The initiatives, based at Swansea University’s Centre for NanoHealth, received funding from the Medical Research Council as part of its 2020 Confidence in Concept (CiC) award. This seeks to take nanomedicine projects from the discovery research stage towards development and the goal of patient benefit. UNIVERSITY CANCER RESEARCH PROGRESS LEADS TO PARTNERS’ FUNDING BOOST A Swansea University project’s ground- breaking work to improve diagnosis and treatment of ovarian cancer has helped it secure more than £3 million of investment from industrial partners and further £2 million from Welsh Government.
In April 2020, final year medical students from Swansea University joined NHS staff in the fight against COVID-19. The first group of students were inducted as doctors after the General Medical Council offered early provisional registration to those who wanted to sign up to begin their duties early. Participation was voluntary and offered to students who had completed the requirements of their programme, passed the relevant summative assessments and the mandatory components of the programme. Student Alex Ruddy admitted he was filled with a sense of nervous duty but said at the time: This is our calling, and although it has arrived at an unexpected and unpredictable time, we could not ignore it. We are all concerned about the pressures facing the NHS. Perhaps most concerning for us are the pressures staff are under to deliver effective care for patients whilst putting themselves, and their loved ones, in very real
I am delighted to welcome you to the latest edition of our Pulse Magazine. This has been a year of unprecedented change and uncertainty. A time where “normal life” is a distant memory, a time in which we have all had to face challenges. However, this period has also seen us flourish as a University. We have seen accelerated innovation in health and care research; we have responded quickly to the needs of our students by offering safe and high quality teaching; we have worked together to support national and international efforts to tackle COVID-19 head on, and; most importantly, come together as a community to support each other in these strange and unique times.
I am proud of both staff and student achievements this past year; they have shown great fortitude, resilience and even bravery by supporting our local community, each other and the NHS. This edition of Pulse will give you a glimpse of some of the amazing work which has taken place this past year and I sincerely hope you can see yourself as part of our wonderful community in the future. The world needs bright, driven and caring people more than ever, people like you! I look forward to seeing you in Swansea very soon. Keith Lloyd
“This is our calling...we have trained for this moment” Dr Alex Ruddy
danger every day. However, despite entering the profession during a global pandemic, we have trained for this moment and above any sense of personal fear or anxiety I think we are all eager to apply ourselves and help at this time of immense need. The entire third year of the University’s midwifery degree also stepped “
up to assist qualified midwives as they looked after women and their families at maternity units in health boards across South Wales and over 100 paramedic students signed up to work with the Welsh Ambulance Service and supported the service that carries out non-urgent and non-critical, planned patient transport such as bringing dialysis and cancer patients for treatment.
Professor Keith Lloyd Pro-Vice Chancellor Executive Dean
Interested in studying a course that will lead you to work in the NHS? Turn to Page 34
If the last year has taught us anything, it’s been how to adapt. Here at Swansea, we’re an innovative bunch! Here are just some of the ways our staff and students have kept things going...
6 WAYS WE’VE
BRYONY BALL MSc Physician Associate Studies Graduate in General Practice
“Completing a 2 yearMaster’s in Physician Associate Studies during a global pandemic strangely enough hadn’t featured inmy future career planningwhen I initially started studying at SwanseaUniversity! From completing clinical placements in hospital wards under extreme pressures at the height of the first wave, sitting exams in COVID safe environments and learning towork in newways when startingmy career in Primary Care, the last 12months have been a challenging situation.
“I’ve learned that flexibility is key, that the learning curve is very steep and that the changes in our working environments affect all of us, newand experienced staff alike. I’ve also found that traditional examinations and history taking need to be constantly adapted. Perhaps most importantly, the situation has highlighted the need for each of us to be aware of our ownmental health, to talk and reflect regularlywith friends, family and colleagues.”
COME AND SEE
Joining the front line workforce
Donating PPE supplies to the NHS
Human anatomy tutorials on YouTube
“88 hours of socially distanced practicals and more test tubes than I care to imagine and that’s just one module! But we delivered all of our undergraduate practical lab sessions before the students went home for Christmas (and lockdown)!“ Dr Nia Davies, Senior Lecturer inMedical Science
Contributing to vaccination & testing
Centre for Academic Success
Head Start WEBINAR SERIES THE NEUROSCIENCE OF REVISING Professor Phil Newton teaches neuroscience across a number of programmes, including MBBCh Graduate Entry Medicine, MSc Physician Associate Studies and a variety of our BSc courses in Medical Sciences. Find out more about the Neuroscience of learning and how understanding this can help you with revision.
Study Skills “In these strange times, we have all had to find new ways of teaching and learning, and finding methods that work for you will be enormously useful when it comes to starting your new course with us at Swansea University. Remember, everyone’s mind works differently - there’s no right or wrong way to study”
Professor Phil Newton, Director of Learning and Teaching
Prepare to cheat
Set a routine
(BUT DON’T ACTUALLY CHEAT!)
Abnormal working hours and reduced Vitamin D, from natural sunlight, can impact cognitive function Setting aside periods of time to work on specific activities will help you to make sure tasks are completed on time - and in a good amount of time too. Scheduling regular breaks is essential, as is spending time outdoors, whatever the weather.
Just imagine having all the information you need at your finger tips! Creating a ‘cheat sheet’ will mean you have to sift through all your notes to find the key information you think you’re going to need. Deciding what is ‘key’ really helps you to recognise what you need to learn, and rewriting it helps you to remember it.
DR NIGEL FRANCIS Associate Professor
The Centre for Academic Success is here to support you in developing your academic study skills and achieve your goals. We can help you bridge the gap between where you are and where you need to be.
Nigel is the co-creator of the Immunology Wars online resource and website, a guide to the immune system through reference to the Star Wars series of films. This resource is available and accessible to all, but with an emphasis on introducing students to the fundamental basics of Immunology. WINNER OF THE 2020 BRITISH SOCIETY FOR IMMUNOLOGY TEACHING EXCELLENCE AWARD
• Improve your writing • Refresh your maths skills • Build your stats knowledge • Develop critical thinking • Manage your time better • Enhance your digital skills • Sharpen your communication skills • Learn how to avoid plagiarism
Make it memorable Big Elephants Carry Apples Up Stairs Easily... ‘ Why?’ we hear you ask Because that’s how you spell BECAUSE You can easily remember key concepts, sequences and anything else you need to learn by creating your own relatable story. Try a rhyme or mnemonic - the more familiar it is, the better you’ll remember.
Get involved There’s a reason that everyone and their dog tells you to join a society when you get to Uni...it’s the best way to make friends, learn new things and have fun. We have over 150 societies and clubs to join, from the University Challenge Society, to the Trampolining Society, and even a VegSoc. Whether you’re a top baker, master archer or an ancient studies enthusiast, we have the society for you, including some fantastic medicine and healthcare related ones...
Current Midwifery student Angharad shares her reasons for choosing Swansea I chose to study at Swansea because I left my interview feeling like nowhere else would compare. The beach location and real community feel of the campus made me feel right at home from the start. Not only this but I was made to feel really excited about my journey into Midwifery from the talks at the open day as well as the introduction to University as a whole, which has an excellent academic standing and excellent student satisfaction statistics. There are so many things I love about my course but I think my favourite thing would have to be the integrated element of study and placement. I am able to apply all the knowledge and skills I learn in University directly into my practice as a Student Midwife. It has given me a real taste for working as a Midwife, which I feel is vital for students wanting to be in this role. Not only that, but it has taught me the art of organisation and being able to manage my time effectively. All these skills will in turn help me to become the best Midwife I can be. My advice for anyone applying would be to fully understand the role of a midwife. Take time to read about the profession, understand the challenges you might face and consider if the roles and responsibilities suit your personality and your lifestyle. Starting the course is a big shock as it’s very intense and busy but you’ll know if it’s right for you because you’ll love every second. Keep your passions close to your heart and always be yourself!
BSc Psychology & MSc Research
Methods in Psychology
“I don’t think there was an opportunity I said no to! I played sports and was captain of the lifesaving team as well as treasurer of the Pole team and sports exec. I was Student President of the on-campus volunteering charity Discovery and held numerous roles in societies. I’ve also acted as a course and college rep during my MSc.”
Sport for all
With sporting opportunities to suit all of our students, from elite and international athletes to complete beginners, there is something for everyone.
#vicepresident #asiansociety #medicine
MILLY HOWLETT Osteopathy Student on placement at the Health and Wellbeing Academy
Final Year Nursing Student
IN A PANDEMIC In the last year, the UK nursing profession has seen one of its biggest ever challenges. Nursing staff and students from Swansea University have responded to the Coronavirus global pandemic by supporting the NHS and the public health of its community in any way they can.
“Working in the osteopathy clinic during the height of the pandemic has been inspiring. There have been many challenges for both students and staff in adapting our practice to ensure we can continue giving the best quality care to our patients. It has given me great pride in knowing that patients have had the confidence to continue attending treatment with us as student osteopaths in such uncertain circumstances, placing their safety into our hands (literally).
“If COVID-19 has taught me anything it is that resilience is a fundamental part of our role as student nurses. Nobody envisaged that we would be involved in a global pandemic. I’m not going to hide from the fact that I did feel a little anxious about what the placement would hold but I really wanted to turn the situation into a positive and use it as an opportunity to learn and develop.”
This pandemic has illustrated the ability of osteopaths to move towards serving as allied healthcare professionals in Wales. I am incredibly grateful to have been a very small part of the much wider national effort to continue delivering patient care to those who have needed it during these times and hope to continue doing so long after this pandemic ends.”
Following the introduction of the Nursing and Midwifery Council Emergency Education Standards in April 2020, more than 700 nursing students opted to undertake extended placements in clinical practice with Welsh health boards and other healthcare providers. Since then, many more have joined them on clinical placements where they work on the frontline alongside nurses and other healthcare professionals.
Staff from the Department of Nursing designed and delivered training for health board staff to upskill and support them in their efforts against COVID-19. After hearing, how difficult it is for patients to stay in touch with their families with COVID-19 preventing hospital visits six first year Adult Nursing students, from our St David’s Park Campus, raised more than £2,400 to buy additional iPads for the Sunderland Ward at South Pembrokeshire Hospital in Pembroke Dock. Alumnus Chelsie Hart, who works as a Senior Nurse at the St George’s University Hospital in London, was named Neurosciences ‘Nurse of the Year’ after volunteering for a role on the ICU Covid wards. Several Nursing Lecturers are working in their spare time to administer COVID-19 vaccines.
HEALTH AND WELLBEING
REA PUGH- DAVIES
STATE-OF-THE-ART TEACHING AND RESEARCH FACILITIES GAIN ON-CAMPUS PLACEMENT EXPERIENCE
Professor Jayne Cutter, Head of Department for Nursing, said:
“I hope to inspire people, to show that no matter what grade or role they are anyone can make a difference. Even the smallest of things can make the biggest difference to our patients. Sometimes it takes a little thought to make things better.” REAWASNAMEDTHEROYALCOLLEGE OF NURSING’S 2020 BEST NURSING SUPPORT WORKER FOR HER FOCUS ONHERPATIENTS
“WE ARE INCREDIBLY PROUD OF THE WAY IN WHICH OUR STAFF AND STUDENTS HAVE REACTED TO THE PANDEMIC. FROM EXTENDING THEIR PLACEMENTS TO QUICKLY DEVELOPING NEW SKILLS, OUR STUDENTS SHOWED HOW DEDICATED THEY ARE TO IMPROVING THE HEALTH AND WELLBEING OF THEIR LOCAL COMMUNITY, DESPITE THE RISKS TO THEIR OWN HEALTH AND SAFETY”
BENEFIT THE LOCAL COMMUNITY
WORK WITH REAL PATIENTS USING TOP-OF-THE-RANGE EQUIPMENT
Interested in Nursing? Turn to page 34 to find out more about all of our healthcare courses
DID YOU KNOW... Consistency is key to a healthy sleep pattern, and that means trying to get to bed at the same time each night, rising the same time the following morning. If you stick to a routine, your body clock will naturally wake you up and get you ready for bed by changing your body temperature
LIFE IN LOCKDOWN Sleep and dreams THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC HAS PLAYED HAVOC WITH ALMOST EVERY FACET OF OUR WAKING LIVES, FROM WORK, EDUCATION AND FINANCES, TO TRAVEL, LEISURE AND SOCIAL FREEDOMS. IT’S ALSO HAD A HUGE KNOCK-ON EFFECT ON OUR SLUMBERS.
Professor Mark Blagrove, a leading expert in sleep and dreaming at the Department of Psychology, shares his views on how much sleep we need and why.
PROFESSOR ANN JOHN Research focuses on young people’s mental health
WHY IS SLEEP IMPORTANT?
“The time between the ages of 11 and 24 is a period of huge change and with that change can come quite unsettling feelings and emotions that are part of normal human experience. One of the most unsettling times is around exam results and what that can do is make you feel really anxious. Anxiety can present in all sorts of ways. Some people are quite aware that they’re feeling anxious - for example if their heart beats a bit faster - but anxiety can also feel like a knot in your stomach or a lump in your throat and those feelings are almost a human response to what you’re experiencing as a threat, which goes back to quite a primitive ‘fight or flight’ idea. Often these feelings will just pass but if you’re finding that they’re keeping you up at night or you’re worrying, or it’s affecting if you want to see your friends - that’s when anxiety is getting too much. One of the things you can do is distract yourself - try breathing in and out slowly, make a playlist or do something physical like going for a walk, talking with friends or mindful activities like colouring. The important thing to remember is that all things pass.
Despite the temptation to squeeze every last waking second out of one of the most depressing and, frankly, boring years in many people’s lives, the fact is humans need sleep. One of the reasons is biological, as sleep protects the brain from conditions such as Alzheimer’s by flushing out harmful toxins, but it also allows us to connect the memories during the day and sieve through which ones are important. Sleep allows us to summarise what we learnt, rather than storing all of the memories during the day. HOW MUCH SLEEP DO WE NEED? History is peppered with world leaders famed for their relatively brief periods of shut- eye. But Professor Blagrove recommends sleeping for at least six or seven hours a night. “
“Sleep allows us to summarise what we learnt” Professor Mark Blagrove
If you get too little sleep, it does affect your mood, how fast you can think, and your ability to learn. HOW HAS THE PANDEMIC AFFECTED SLEEP PATTERNS? It is not all bad. People working and studying from home may have found the precious time previously spent “
commuting can be redistributed elsewhere – including sleep - while others have found that the stresses and strains of life under lockdown will keep them up all night. One of the causes of insomnia is resentment – if people feel resentful of others, it can add to insomnia. Try to reduce the number of things bothering you before you get your head down. “
If you’re worried about your results give us a call as we have people here to help you. Just talking your options through can really help to clear your mind”
Worried about life AFTER LOCKDOWN? The easing of lockdown restrictions affect so many people in different ways. Our Psychology department have put together some top tips for getting back out there after isolation!
self care “Practising Yoga at any stage of life and enjoying the benefits of your practice with friends and family can greatly improve your health and wellbeing.” Stephen Buss, Osteopathy Lecturer and Hatha Yoga Instructor
LOCKDOWN Listening Explore our Podcast Series to find out more about how our ground breaking research has been making an impact globally.
There is a well-accepted CBT treatment for anxiety called Exposure Therapy. This evidences that the more someone avoids something the more anxiety incubates, or increases, and that the way round this is to expose yourself to the feared situation in small, staged, steps. Professor Nicola Gray explains: Try to go out regularly (at least once a day) and take it one step at a time, setting yourself small goals that are easy to achieve. Remember everybody is facing uncertainty and challenge - it is really important to try not to judge ourselves harshly based on what other people are doing. “
1. Worried about going into shops or using public transport? Headphones may be a good way to reduce feelings of being overwhelmed by sights, sounds
RELAX AND RELEASE
Sitting cross legged or in a chair lengthen the spine and open the front
Sit on the floor and take one knee to the chest. Imagine a thread
Lay on your shins with your arms outstretched. Follow your
or smells that you haven’t experienced in a while.
2. Pace yourself! Don’t let others pressure you into doing things you don’t want to, reconnect with your friends safely and when it’s the right time for you. 3. Vary your routines - Try and see different people and encounter different situations, if a place or situation becomes too busy try visiting again at a different time. 4. Focus on the present – Regulations and restrictions change frequently and there are multiple conflicting messages so just focus on the moment you are in right now. 5. Celebrate small wins (and big wins)! Keep a note of things you’ve achieved, enjoyed or surprised yourself doing as looking back will remind you just how far you’ve come.
of the trunk, once centred take time to observe your natural breathing pattern, it’s harder than it sounds! When comfortable, count to 4 for the inbreath and 4 for the outbreath.
attached to the crown of the head pulling you upwards. Rotate the spine, keeping the shoulders and face in line and twist on the outbreath. Hold for 5 breaths and repeat to the other side.
own natural breathing cycle and allow gravity to do the work. Once comfortable, let your body settle down and be still for a few minutes. Enjoy!
DR AMIRA GUIRGUIS The devastating effects of ‘legal highs’
The Lighthouse Club
PROF. TOM POTOKAR Burn injuries: How do we tackle this global public health crisis?
The Lighthouse Club is open to students on our healthcare programmes who may have difficulty in accessing the University’s support services due to time spent off- campus on clinical placement. It’s a safe space for students to talk about how they are feeling, to share coping mechanisms and ideas with each other and enjoy a short break from the rest of life’s challenges whilst trying out a range of distraction techniques. Students find The Lighthouse Club a beneficial and welcome break; a chance to chat with others experiencing similar challenges to themselves where they can offer support to each other and form networks.
Listen and subscribe to the series at:
HOW YOUR CORONADIARY COULD
ASHLEY AKBARI Senior Research Manager & Data Scientist
go down in history Has living with isolation and social distancing inspired you to put pen to paper (or finger to screen)? If so, you could be part of an unique social research project examining how society lives through COVID-19.
“Population Data Science has never been more important than throughout the coronavirus pandemic. The research infrastructure and expertise here at Swansea has been instrumental in enabling collaboration with multi- disciplinary teams and organisations in the use of data to answer policy relevant questions, and improve services and outcomes for people for the people of Wales and the UK.”
THE DATA SCIENCE BUILDING IS HOME TO POPULATION DATA SCIENCE RESEARCH AND PROJECTS. DATA SCIENCE ACTIVITIES HAVE ATTRACTED £30MILLION OF UK GOVERNMENT FUNDING. THIS MAKES THE SERVERS IN THE BUILDING ONE OF THE MAIN DATA LINKAGE SITES FOR ANONYMISED HEALTH DATA IN THE UK.
Dr Michael Ward, Senior Lecturer in Social Sciences here at Swansea University, has been recruiting volunteers of all ages to take part in the CoronaDiaries project, the first social science study into the crisis, which aims to study how we have documented our experiences during the pandemic. And this doesn’t just mean traditional diary entries, he is eager to include social media posts, blogs, videos – any method that people are using to express themselves during lockdown. As medical and epidemiological knowledge is being produced, there is also an urgent need to use a social science lens in the response to COVID-19. “
Dr Ward still wants to hear from anyone who is willing to take part in CoronaDiaries: Documenting the everyday lived experiences of a global pandemic and share their experiences. These diaries will act as a recording of what we are going through for future generations and also as a way to share pain and experiences with others. A CoronaDiary can take any form of expression from handwritten notebooks to video diaries, digital recordings, reflective pieces, social media posts or other artistic or creative expressions. He is hoping to secure funding to produce a digital archive of the contributions so they can be used to help influence not only the strategy and implementation of the COVID-19 response but also to help inform for future outbreaks. The project is based in part on the mass observations studies conducted before, during and after the Second World War which saw volunteers record their experiences. “ “
Thinking about your future?
I I want to maximise the wealth of experiences that can emerge from both anthropological and sociological analysis of our different responses to the pandemic. Dr Ward said as lockdowns have continued, new modes of behaviour have been created and different social situations are constantly coming into existence – from Zoom work meetings to virtual coffee mornings via party apps. People are responding in multiple ways. New interests, new interactions, a different social life is taking shape in both the real and virtual worlds. “ “
Develop your career, skills, employability and entrepreneurship with the Swansea Employability Academy. We help our students achieve the careers they deserve. The University offers a variety of paid work experiences and careers advice through its dedicated employability and enterprise team. • Careers fairs • Entrepreneurial activities • Alumni networking • Placements • Help to start your own business at the end of your studies
PULSE SPOTLIGHT ON
MAKE YOURSELF at home
DR PAULA ROW Disability Co-ordinator
DID YOU KNOW... If you have applied for
Foundation Year If you don’t have the necessary entry requirements to enter on to the first year of a degree, you can apply for a place on a degree course with an Integrated Foundation Year. one of our undergraduate degrees and don’t meet your offer, we can consider you for a Foundation Year
“As a Disability Coordinator, I help students with disabilities such as learning difficulties, mental health conditions or physical disabilities, to access student support teams across campus and to obtain the help and support that they need. This will take the form of a tailored support plan, which could include provision of reasonable adjustments such as extra time in exams, deadline extensions, a caseworker, and a mentor or notetaker.”
Degrees with an integrated foundation year are ideal for students whose A Level choices or performance would not normally gain them a place on a BSc programme. They’re also a great choice for mature students who wish to re-enter education.
Many of our students who have studied a foundation year outperform students who start on year 1 of the main degree. Many go on to get first class honours, are brilliant ambassadors for the University and are highly valued by our departments. Depending on your subject, you can also brush up on other skills that you might need. For instance, if one of your A Levels let you down, the Foundation Year gives you a great opportunity to get up to scratch. You will also become more confident in your own abilities.
We consider applicants on their own merits, so offers can vary. If you don’t think you meet our standard BSc entry requirements please contact us to discuss entry on to the Foundation Year. • Psychology • Social Policy • Social Sciences • Sociology • Sociology & Psychology • Sociology & Social Sciences Your options • Applied Medical Sciences • Biochemistry • Biochemistry & Genetics • Genetics • Medical Biochemistry • Medical Genetics • Medical Pharmacology • Pharmacy • Population Health & Medical Sciences
GESTJANA VENGJELI Foundation Year Graduate
“Thanks to my foundation year, I undoubtedly gained valuable laboratory skills that are supporting me now in year 1. I feel more confident whenever I attend my laboratory practicals, but also whenever I am about to study new course modules. I have a more proper understanding of my strengths and potential weaknesses, I learned more about myself and my academic field and the student experience was excellent.”
During your foundation year, you will improve your skills and increase your knowledge of the subject. After successful completion (typically 60% average), you will then go straight on to the main degree course. When you graduate, it will be as though you’ve graduated from the three-year degree course (four-year for Pharmacy) and your qualification will be a Bachelors degree, e.g. BSc (Hons) or MPharm (Hons).
Free wifi 24/7 launderette Adapted rooms available Options to suit your preferences
Interested in a Foundation Year? Turn to page 34 to find out more about all of our courses
LIBERTY STADIUM LIBERTY STADIUM
M4 & CARDIFF
SWANSEA STATION SWANSEA STATION
SINGLETON PARK I
Our city by the sea with an unrivalled beachfront location allows you to make the most of the seaside whilst still enjoying the bustle of city life.
SINGLETON PARK CAMPUS
SWANSEA IS: 4 hours from Manchester 3 hours from Birmingham and London 2 hours from Bath and Bristol 1 hour from Cardiff Cardiff, Bristol and Heathrow airports are easy to get to from Swansea too!
GOWER PENINSULA With over 19 miles of beautiful coastline to explore, you can spend your time hiking the limestone peaks of Three Cliffs Bay, surfing some of the UK’s best waves in Llangennith or simply marvelling the rugged beauty of Rhossili Bay.
MUMBLES The University’s neighbour is the cosy beachfront village of Mumbles; home to Victoria Pier and Oystermouth Castle, streets of boutique shops and independent eateries, along with the famous Verdi’s and Joe’s Ice cream parlours.
UPLANDS The student hub of the Uplands is home to trendy bars and eateries, the best hangover cure in Wales (thank you Uplands Diner for your Mega Beast Breakfast!), convenience shops and monthly Uplands Markets, and some of the best views in the city.
MARINA When the sea calls, there’s nowhere better. Come here for everything from big-night-out bars, to the Dylan Thomas Theatre, the National Waterfront Museum and a bustling monthly market.
SINGLETON CAMPUS Located on Singleton campus, the Medical School is nestled beautifully between Swansea Bay’s beachfront and leafy Singleton Park, perfect for lunchtime picnics and weekend beach days.
EXPLORING THE CITY In Swansea’s city centre you can shop the high street and Wales’ largest indoor market, treat your inner culture vulture at the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery or sample the varying eateries, bars and pubs of Swansea’s (in)famous Wind Street.
By studying at Swansea University you’ll become part of a world-class research institution with grand ambitions. Our campuses are vibrant and diverse with staff and students from over 130 different countries making up our friendly community.
Did you know that the “legend-filled land” of Wales made it into the National Geographic magazine’s list of most exciting destinations to visit in 2020? The travel magazine’s top 25 places to visit across the world are based on culture, city, nature and adventure...and Wales is brimming with them all!
AUDITI BRIDGET BISWAS MSc Public Health and Health Promotion from Bangladesh
“Since I have arrived in Swansea, I find everyone to be friendly; from university staff to the locals I meet at shops or on the streets. In my opinion, the city is culturally tolerant and safe to live in.
The Eira Francis Davies Scholarship is covering for my full-tuition fees at Swansea University. Winning this scholarship has been life changing for me as with its support I am progressing towards my academic goals. I feel honoured and privileged to have received this scholarship and committed to carry forward the spirit of it.” WINNER OF THE 2020 EIRA FRANCIS DAVIES SCHOLARSHIP, AWARDED ANNUALLY TOONE OUTSTANDING FEMALE STUDENT WHO IS A NATIONAL OF AND RESIDENT IN AN ELIGIBLE DEVELOPING COUNTRY AND WHO PURSUES A POSTGRADUATE TAUGHT MASTER’S PROGRAMME IN HEALTH OR LIFE SCIENCES. Flying the Flag MEET SOME OF OUR INTERNATIONAL STAFF
Swansea University aims to offer all its undergraduate students the opportunity to study or work overseas. We have partnerships with over 150 universities across the world and offer a wide range of year, semester and summer abroad options.
By studying, working or volunteering overseas, you will ensure you stand out from the crowd, develop new skills and an invaluable international network for your future beyond graduation.
Employers acknowledge that spending time abroad: • Builds confidence, self-awareness and maturity
• Develops a global perspective and intercultural awareness • Facilitates adaptability to new environments and challenges • Improves communication and language skills • Develops transferable skills to help your future career
PROFESSORYUQINWANG Mass Spectrometry
PULSE What will you discover?
PUTTING OTHERS FIRST...
Head Start WEBINAR SERIES GET AHEAD WITH RESEARCH AS AN UNDERGRADUATE Find out more about our MSci option - the integrated undergraduate master’s degree that gives you specialist training in laboratory techniques and a further research-focused year to the BSc. Graduate with a master’s level qualification while paying undergraduate fees...Winner!
Dr Richard Fry contributed to the UK Government Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) sub-group on Care Homes
OUR RESEARCHERS HAVE PLAYED MAJOR ROLES IN GOVERNMENT-LED EFFORTS USING DATA AND EXPERTISE TO SUPPORT GOVERNMENTS, THE NHS, AND VULNERABLE COMMUNITIES COMBAT CORONAVIRUS.
Our Medical School trains tomorrow’s biomedical scientists, pharmacists, physician’s associates, doctors in a supportive and inclusive research environment. This environment gives researchers freedom to undertake interdisciplinary research, develop innovative approaches to health- related problems, and expand the knowledge economy. In early 2020, the Welsh Government convened its Technical Advisory Cell (TAC), to provide coordination of scientific and technical advice to support decision makers during emergencies. A number of Swansea researchers were members of TAC during the COVID-19 crisis, helping Wales to lead the way in pandemic disease modelling, behaviour and anonymised health data. DISEASE MODELLING Professor Mike Gravenor was a leading contributor to the Modelling TAC sub-group, delivering the Reasonable Worst-Case Scenario for the November Firebreak calculation, and was a member of the influential Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling.
SEAN HOLM PhD Student
“The need for such a resource has never been greater” Vaughan Gething AM
Research plays a central role in our success. We are at the forefront of medical, health and life science research, actively supporting staff and students to build working relationships with counterparts overseas. Our world-leading research staff are actively looking for research students to supervise. Studying a research degree
“Postgraduate research is an exciting and challenging voyage of discovery into the unknown. Being well prepared for the endeavour is key to making a success of it. Fortunately, during my undergraduate studies at Swansea university, I not only gained the necessary lab experience and academic knowledge but also the essential network of contacts and support, vital to securing a postgraduate research position.”
BEHAVIOURS Professor Ann John chaired the behavioural TAC sub-group and was also invited to the Independent Scientific Pandemic Insights Group (UK SPI-B) on Behaviours. Professor John is a leading authority
ANONYMISED DATA Led by Professor Ronan Lyons, our SAIL Databank has been integral to the ‘One Wales’ response to COVID-19; a multi-agency team of academic, health, administration and government bodies to react quickly and effectively to COVID-19 developments.
at Swansea will give you access to: • State-of-the-art research facilities • International collaborators • Grant-writing expertise • Enhanced career prospects
on mental health and deputy head of the Medical School.
Interested in pursuing your research ideas? See Page 34 for details of our research degrees
DID YOU KNOW... Swansea University has
WHY DRYING YOUR HANDS IS IMPORTANT TO WARD OFF THE CORONAVIRUS
headlines SWANSEAUNIVERSITYHASBEENAT THECUTTINGEDGEOFRESEARCHANDINNOVATION SINCE 1920 BENEFITTING THE HEALTH, WEALTH ANDWELL-BEING OF OUR SOCIETY. been awarded multi-million pound funding for COVID-19 related research projects
Washing hands alone may not protect you from the Coronavirus, with the drying process reportedly also being critical to staying infection-free.
SWANSEA STUDENT’S ROLE HELPING TO ENSURE HOSPITAL STAFF STAY PROTECTED
COVID-19: ‘HOW LOCKDOWN STOPPED ME FROM BREASTFEEDING’ Like a lot of new mums, Leonie Williams wanted to breastfeed her baby as the advice she had was “breast is best”. But like many newborn babies, little Marley found it tough and Leonie “struggled” to get professional support as the COVID-19 crisis gripped the UK. FIRST WOMAN CONSULTANT CARDIAC SURGEON IN WALES MADE OBE IN NEW YEAR HONOURS Professor Farah Bhatti, who was born in Birmingham, brought up in South London, has been honoured for services to diversity in the NHS in Wales. She was the first British woman of Pakistani heritage to be appointed as a Consultant Cardiac Surgeon in the UK and the first female Cardiac Surgeon and first Muslim woman to be elected as a council member of the Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) England. She dedicated the honour to her parents, describing them as ‘the real heroes’ of her story.
A DOCTOR’S INSIGHT: WHY BAME PEOPLE CAN BE MORE LIKELY TO HAVE UNDERLYING HEALTH CONDITIONS Over the course of the
UNIVERSITY EXPERTS LEADING THE WAY ON PANDEMIC RESEARCH Four Swansea University academics are part of major new research project investigating COVID-19 and what it can teach us about coping with future pandemics. Mathematical modelling of infectious disease transmission is an important tool in forecasting future trends of pandemics. However different models tend to give different results.
Coronavirus pandemic, it has become increasingly clear that people from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds are more susceptible to falling seriously ill and dying from the disease.
PEMBROKESHIRE STUDENT NURSES RAISE £1,000 TO BUY IPADS FOR SUNDERLAND WARD A Swansea University student is playing a key role in managing supplies of PPE at one of the hospitals hit hardest by the pandemic. The Applied Medical Sciences student is now COVID-19 PPE Coordinator at KFM at King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.
RESEARCHERS LAUNCH SURVEY TO EXAMINE FACE MASK USAGE DURING COVID-19 PANDEMIC A team of Swansea researchers are calling on members of the public to complete a survey about their experiences of wearing face masks during the COVID-19 pandemic. Funded by Sêr Cymru, the findings will provide evidence-based advice to the Welsh Government on the use of face masks and raise awareness of potential inequalities. TRUST US, YOUR LOCKDOWN-INDUCED ANXIETY DREAMS AREN’T ALL BAD Researchers have now suggested that dreams can be used as a form of therapy for anxiety disorders. After waking from a bad dream, participants were better equipped to deal with fears and frightening situations than those who hadn’t had one.
HALF OF TEENS `UNABLE TO STOP WORRYING´ AT TIMES DURING COVID-19 PANDEMIC The majority of young people have also felt alone,
worried and believe the virus will damage their future, a study by the Mental Health Foundation and Swansea University found.
RECOVERING FROM CORONAVIRUS: NEW VENTILATOR CAN SAVE LIVES AND CREATE JOBS A team of Swansea doctors and engineers has designed a new ventilator that can be built quickly from local parts and used even for patients with severe Coronavirus. The new design can be built easily from generic parts and plastic panels.
Seven student nurses are on a mission to help a community hospital ward’s patients stay connected to family and friends. Since COVID-19, iPads are a vital tool for patients on a long stay in hospital to talk to and see their family and loved ones.
Microneedle skin patches
DID YOU KNOW... Swansea University has strong links with professional practice and academic research networks in Europe and around the world, so your learning is informed by the latest policy and practice developments
TO ADMINISTER VACCINES
WHAT ARE MICRONEEDLES? Traditional hypodermic needles can be frightening and painful for children and adults alike. Microneedles could improve patient compliance and therefore yield better health outcomes. Microneedles are tiny needles, measured in millionths of a metre (μm), designed to deliver medicines through the skin. They have more in common with transdermal patches, such as those used to deliver nicotine to help people give up smoking, than with hypodermic needles. WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS? Dr Michael Graz, Chief Scientific Officer of Innoture, explains: “OUR TRANSDERMAL DELIVERY SYSTEM HAS THE POTENTIAL TO IMPROVE PATIENT EXPERIENCE AND SIGNIFICANTLY REDUCE THE BURDEN ON THE NHS AND OTHER HEALTHCARE SYSTEMS. THE PATCH IS PAINLESS AND MINIMALLY INVASIVE FOR PATIENTS TO SELF-ADMINISTER. “AT A TIME WHEN SELF- ISOLATION IS NECESSARY, THE PATCH CAN BE APPLIED WITH EASE IN THE HOME UNDER GUIDANCE FROM A HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL, REDUCING THE NEED FOR PEOPLE TO ATTEND A CLINIC.”
A revolutionary new way to give vaccines through microneedle skin patches is being tested at Swansea University, thanks to £200,000 of EU funding announced by the Welsh Government. The COVID-19 pandemic is giving extra urgency to the search for vaccines and new ways of delivering them. This important research is being conducted by Innoture , a leading UK company with expertise in applying medicines through the skin. This represents a significant milestone for Innoture, and further validation of their next-generation transdermal delivery system. The innovative technology has the potential to make a meaningful difference to improve patient and public health in Wales and beyond.
Innoture has worked with Swansea University since 2012. The company’s R&D department is based in the University’s Institute of Life Science, (ILS) where research has been conducted in collaboration with the University’s Centre for Nanohealth. The research will develop and test technology for delivering a vaccine dose via the skin. It will also test a simple and secure disposal process, which would allow the patches to be administered at home.
NEVER BEFORE HAS PUBLIC HEALTH HAD SUCH A PROMINENCE IN EVERYONE’S DAY-TO-DAY LIFE AS DURING THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC.
At the peak of the UK’s second lockdown and at the dawn of the mass vaccination programme, Dr Ruth Hopkins, Director for Public Health Policy at Swansea University was interviewed by Sky News about her view of the effect of vaccine rollout on Public Health. The introduction of the vaccine programme is key in helping to tackle the Coronavirus pandemic. In January 2021, we were seeing 4,000 admissions into hospitals every day and normally during this period of time we would only see 1,000 admissions to hospital “ with respiratory ailments. At the time of this interview, there were 32,000 people in hospitals and that impacts on everybody. We all have a responsibility. The vaccination doesn’t give you instant protection against the virus. We still have to maintain the other things we have been asked to do – we still must act as though we have the virus as it is going to come in waves. This is a global pandemic and as a nation we also need to think about how we are going to support the developing world. Whilst we
“We all have a responsibility”
Dr Ruth Hopkins
The award of £200,000 for the research comes from the Welsh Government via SMARTCymru 2014- 2020 European Regional Development Fund, West Wales and the Valleys. This supports Welsh businesses to develop, implement and commercialise new products, processes and services.
could all be vaccinated here in the UK and other wealthier countries, the virus will still be prevalent in the developing world. We need to think about the role we’re going to play in supporting these countries to roll out their vaccines. We are going to have to amend our behaviour. When you look back at the 1918 Spanish Flu, it lasted a couple of years and so we need to be as cautious now as we
were then. The vaccination is an important tool and we are at a very critical point now with the NHS. We need to remember that this pandemic is not just going to disappear. It will eventually filter out as we tackle it and as the vaccines become globally available. But we must ensure that we still maintain those measures that are asked of us in accordance with public health research.
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