At just 27, Luke Bond has already achieved so much. He began his career in social care starting out with a community care team and went from that to becoming a team leader in the space of just one year. He then spent a further five years with Cornwall Care ultimately becoming an Area Manager winning numerous awards in the process including ‘The Home Care Co-ordinator’ in the Great South West Awards in November 2016.
Despite this incredible success, he eventually decided to follow his heart and look for a role with more opportunity to pursue his love of caring for patients. He joined the NHS, working initially as a therapist on the Acute Medical Unit (AMU) at Royal Cornwall Hospital, and then as an Emergency Medical Technician. Having wanted to go into nursing before embarking on his career in social care, he jumped at the opportunity to join the Nursing Associate Apprenticeship at Truro and Penwith College in September 2020 doing the Apprenticeship alongside his current role. He feels the impact of what he has learnt is in the first few months has been huge, comparing what he was able to do in the first UK lockdown with the current one.
"The first lockdown was before I started the course. You always feel like you can do more but don’t have the skillset or experience to do it. This lockdown, not even a year later, it has given me so much confidence in my abilities."
Luke enjoys everything about the Apprenticeship despite initial worries before he began as he is dyslexic and was dreading the theory elements of the course. He could not be more effusive in his praise of his tutors who he describes as ‘amazing’ and prepared to ‘do anything to make sure we understand’. He goes on to say:
"I feel so supported. I don’t think we could have asked for better tutors. They always message us to make sure we are okay, do regular reviews via MS Teams and are always at the end of an email."
When asked whether he feels he is getting enough practical experience, he replies ‘absolutely’ without hesitation and goes on to proudly state that he feels he has ‘the best assessor out of the cohort’. Luke appreciates how the Deputy Sister on AMU encourages him to gain work-based knowledge. He also comments that he learns from the patients as well as colleagues, such as through a recent opportunity to spend time with the endoscopy team.
And when asked what he would say to anyone considering doing the Nursing Associate Apprenticeship with Truro and Penwith College, he is unequivocal in his reply:
"Definitely do it! I got nervous and thought what if I am not good enough for it. But the way the tutors greeted me and their support, gave me all the confidence I needed. If you are passionate about something, just do it – you are the only person who holds yourself back."