Press Release

Hundreds of final-year nursing students set to graduate early from practice

Published on 26 June 2020

Over 300 nursing students at the University of Dundee, who were scheduled to graduate in November, are set to be awarded their degree early.

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Over 300 nursing students at the University of Dundee, who were scheduled to graduate in November, are set to be awarded their degree early. 

In April, hundreds of final-year nursing students at the University chose to undertake paid placements and to aid in the global battle against Covid-19. This week, most of these students will have completed the required clinical hours and theory modules needed to qualify as registered practitioners. 

Over the coming weeks there will be final checks to get the students ready for the next board of examiners meeting on 24 July, where the first wave of students will be awarded their degree. 

The University is one of few higher education institutions in Scotland that has arranged for the students to be awarded their degree early. Many have employment organised for commencement in August but will remain in paid placement while they await registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). 

Professor Lynn Kilbride, Dean of the School of Health Sciences at the University, said, “I want to offer my heartfelt congratulations and thanks to all of our students qualifying. 

“2020 is the Year of the Nurse and Midwife and the response of these final year students to the Covid-19 pandemic has been amazing. It has highlighted the real value of our professions to the healthcare workforce and society as a whole. 

“Despite all of the logistical challenges and concerns, these nurses chose to complete their studies in the clinical areas. Their attitude and performance has been a great source of pride for the University. I am delighted to know that the future of healthcare is in good hands. 

“I would also like to support the students who, for various reasons, decided to not partake in earlier paid placement, as we will be relying on them highly to support our colleagues in the aftermath of the crisis. Their freshness and energy will be welcomed into the clinical area by staff, patients and clients.” 

The final-year students who took up posts within the NHS to help provide resilience across the service during the pandemic say their time in paid placement has prepared them for a career as a registered nurse, as Mental Health Nursing BSc student Lindsay O’Keeffe explained. 

“I will finish my placement in the intensive psychiatric care unit this week” she said. “I have gained a massive amount of confidence. This experience has shown me what being qualified and working is going to be like. It has pulled all my learning together and made me feel ready to take up my graduate band 5 post. 

“I would just like to say a big thank you to the University for their hard work and support over the past three years.” 

Adult Nursing BSc student, Brooklyn Bruce, said, “I opted in to be a Band 4 Student Nurse during this pandemic, and my current placement is at Whitehills Community Hospital within Angus. It is a brilliant hospital to work in, with an amazing team who have given me such a variety of learning opportunities. 

“I have enjoyed every opportunity and experience I have been given at Whitehills and it has certainly given me the knowledge and confidence required for becoming a registered nurse.” 

It was recently announced that Nursing at the University of Dundee surged 22 places in the Complete University Guide 2021 rankings to sit 24th in the table. 


Jessica Rorke

Media Relations Officer

+44 (0)1382 388878