A Spalding student has struck gold at the country’s largest skills and careers event for young people.
Rhianna Berry, who is currently studying at Boston College, was awarded first place in the health and social care competition at the WorldSkills UK national finals.
The competition, which was organised by Profiles4Care and sponsored by the NHS Leadership Academy, aims to find the best adult health and social care professionals in the country.
Rhianna (18) – who is studying level three health and social care – secured her place in the national finals after scoring highly in the regional round.
She went on to compete against seven others in front of thousands of visitors at the NEC in Birmingham.
As part of the competition Rhianna took part in eight separate scenarios in which she was presented with a care plan and then had to use her practical skills and knowledge to react to each situation appropriately and provide professional care as if it was real life.
The tasks were based on themes that included diabetes, Parkinson’s wound dressing, vital signs, dementia, learning disabilities, drugs and alcohol, stoma care infection control, basic life support and mental health safeguarding.
Rihanna said: “I am really overwhelmed – I don’t think it has sunk in that I am now number one in the UK for health and social care.
“I know it’s an amazing achievement, I have thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience and the hard work has definitely paid off.
“I am so grateful to my lecturers at Boston College – they all have different industry backgrounds and so much experience which means I have learned a broad range of hands-on skills and in-depth knowledge as part of my course.”
She added: “I’m now excited and focussed on attending the four university interviews I have been offered with the aim of securing a place on a nursing degree when I have completed my course.”
Lecturer Ruth Catlett and Jo Wright, programme area manager at Boston College, attended the finals and spoke for the whole team.
They said: “We are thoroughly proud of Rhianna’s amazing achievement.
“She was competing against students from higher level courses than her as well as individuals that are already in full time employment.
“So for her to be crowned the winner at such a high level is a testament to her hard work, dedication and skills.”