GRADUATION 2020: Double celebrations as podiatry award nominee graduates
University of Salford student Jessica Wheeldon has double the reason to celebrate – not only is she is graduating with first class honours this week, she has also just been shortlisted for a national student award.
Jessica (pictured) has been shortlisted in the ‘Student of the Year’ category at the Flexitol Tomorrow’s Podiatry Awards. These are the first podiatry focused awards which aim to recognise the outstanding contributions of those in the field.
Jessica said: “I was overwhelmed to be shortlisted as it was not something I ever expected! I was really proud of myself and extremely touched by the kind words from my nominee.”
Andrea Graham, Lecturer in Podiatry, who nominated Jessica for the award said: “Having taught and supervised Jessica throughout her degree, I have been privileged to watch how she has grown into a fully-fledged, highly competent and capable health care professional that I would be proud to work shoulder to (socially distanced) shoulder with!
“Jessica has a strongly compassionate and empathic approach to the patients in her care – she communicates effectively to all her patients, helping them to understand and change their behaviours in order to improve their outcomes.
“I have no doubt that Jessica will be an amazing advocate for our profession and has more to give on her journey into her new career.”
Jessica says she decided to study podiatry as she wanted to enhance the quality of life for her patients. “I have thoroughly enjoyed completing my degree, I have learned alongside some fantastic clinicians whose passion inspires your learning. I have enjoyed the clinical placements the most, these are priceless in providing hands on experience.”
Graduation celebrations will be online for the time being, and despite the strange circumstances of completing her degree during a global pandemic, Jessica is still keen to celebrate. “The coronavirus pandemic did affect my final placement, but university staff were fantastic in communicating effectively to ensure students were able to confidently complete and submit our final assessments.
“I’m so excited to graduate. Podiatry is a fantastic, friendly and growing profession. The course at Salford provides a holistic learning approach which allows students to become knowledgeable and have the key skills to enter the workplace on qualifying. I am looking forward to starting my career and embracing all the opportunities which lie ahead.”