Students from schools and colleges across north London were given the chance to try out a variety of high-tech equipment at a careers event held at the Royal Free Hospital last week.

Almost 200 students from 10 schools including The Totteridge Academy in Barnet, St Ignatius College in Enfield and Acland Burghley in Camden attended the event, which was organised by the trust’s education and development team.

During an interactive stand session, students were able to find out more about many of the professions available within the NHS.

The stands were run by trust staff, including podiatrists, dieticians, nurses, speech and language therapists, midwives and many more, allowed students to test out diagnostic equipment including thermometers, slit lamps, which are used to look at eyes, a balance board to assess balance and communication aids.

During the day three people enrolled in apprenticeships at the Royal Free London spoke to the students to explain the benefits of the employment scheme and the variety of roles included in the apprenticeship scheme.

Jen Tilley, head of health, social care and business at Totteridge Academy, said: “It’s been an excellent day – really informative. It was great for the students to find out about apprenticeships and how they are offered in lots of different areas. It’s a fabulous way of developing practical skills. This day has been a great way of opening their eyes to the many different professions there are in the NHS.”

George Georgiou, a teacher at Barnet and Southgate College, said: “It’s really great for the students to get involved in this way. It’s great for them to get an insight into the different roles there are in a hospital.

“I was also really impressed with the apprenticeship speakers. I think it gave our students a real understanding of apprenticeship, which was really helpful to them.”

Catherine Desforges, head of education and development for allied health professions, added: “There are so many wonderful careers available at the Royal Free London and within the NHS more widely. We wanted to give students a real understanding of the opportunities offered here to young people.

Maggie Maxfield, head of education and development for nursing and midwifery, said:  “We were delighted that so many students were able to attend – I hope some of them will give real consideration to working in the NHS in healthcare careers that make a difference.”   

Picture caption: Students from Barnet and Southgate College using some of the equipment at the careers fair.