Jennifer Keal

CURRENT JOB TITLE/COURSEMedical Student

YEAR OF LEAVING, 2011

FAVOURITE SUBJECT IN HAYDON SCHOOL AND WHY? French because it was totally different to the science subjects I had to study to get onto my university course and because it was a chance to have debates and discussions.  It also allowed me to go abroad on a school exchange and to do work experience – plus I still use the language nowadays if I’m on holiday in France! (and also because sometimes we’d watch films and eat croissants…)   

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE SINCE LEAVING HAYDON SCHOOL ? I went to the University of Bristol to study Medicine and completed my final year in 2016. In this time I’ve done placements in hospitals around the South West of England, and have also done placements in GP surgeries, nurseries and a prison. I’ve shadowed doctors, seen my own patients, helped in operating theatres and even tested out play therapy on the children’s ward! This year I will also be spending two months at a hospital in South Africa before coming back to the UK to work as a doctor. I’ve just got my first job working at the Royal Berkshire Hospital.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT IN LIFE AND HOW DID YOUR EXPERIENCE AT HAYDON SCHOOL HELP YOU TO ACHIEVE OTHER SUCCESSES?  Passing my medical school finals! My time at Haydon helped me in many ways. Speaking in assemblies helped me develop the skills for presentations and public speaking. Cross country in PE taught me to enjoy running which led to me completing a half-marathon this year. Exchanges to France and Italy taught me to be confident speaking a foreign language and travelling abroad.

WHAT ONE PIECE OF ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO CURRENT STUDENTS? Having a healthy work-life balance is the key to being successful. Work hard and give yourself plenty of time to do so, but also make time for seeing friends and having fun!

WHAT’S YOUR NEXT BIG GOAL? To be successful in my new job as a junior doctor! I’d like to apply for specialty training after my first two years and hopefully train as a psychiatrist or GP.

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