University of Galway programme gives a taste of what it’s like to work in healthcare

Isabella Devitt, from Seamount College, Galway learns about examining a patient's chest from CNM3 Simulation Nurse Educator, Philip Parackal Augusthinose at the Simulation Centre at University of Galway. Credit – Martina Regan.
Feb 07 2023 Posted: 11:07 GMT

University of Galway’s College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences will hold an interactive taster programme for transition year students, offering hands-on experience of how healthcare teams work together.

The Health Professional Taster Day takes place on Saturday April 1 and Saturday April 22 in the University’s new state-of-the-art simulation facility, located at the Clinical Science Institute on the grounds of Galway University Hospital.

The facility – the Irish Centre for Applied Patient Safety and Simulation at the School of Medicine - opened in 2022 and is recognised as an international centre for excellence in education.

The taster programme is open to post-primary students in the 41 schools in Galway city and county.

It is the first of its kind to bring healthcare professions together to demonstrate all skill sets across multiple degrees - Medicine, Nursing, Midwifery, Occupational Therapy, Podiatric Medicine and Speech and Language Therapy.  

Dr Dara Byrne, Professor of Simulation at University of Galway said: “In the Simulation facility we will recreate realistic clinical experiences for Transition Year students, and will give them a flavour of what is on offer for those who choose to study at University of Galway. It will also give a sense of what a career as a healthcare provider is like.

“The students will see how simulation recreates real-life medical procedures and scenarios such as endoscopy, childbirth and medical emergencies in a safe environment. We are excited to give the students hands-on experience and they will also get an opportunity to try suturing, cannulation, fixing fractures and much more. While this is a simulated environment it is also very real and students should be aware of that when they come along.”

Registration is now open for the Taster Day and applications will be accepted from February 7 until February 24 at 5pm. For further information or to register visit

Professor Byrne explained the rationale for this event: “The theme for these taster days is community. It is a community outreach event, delivered by a community of practice- our multiprofessional team. Through this event we are reaching out to our Galway county and city transition year students, including those who traditionally would not have envisaged a career in healthcare.

“Widening participation is a key component of our College strategy. With that in mind we are offering the same number of places on the programme to each and every school. We particularly welcome applications from DEIS schools and from students taking QQI (FETAC or NCVA) qualifications. We are also looking forward to introducing the concept of inter-professional teams and to showing how key team-work is part of the education of health professionals.”

“Parents are also welcome to accompany the students, and there will be a specific information talk at the start of each session for parents and students.”


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