Richard Taunton student Rochelle Smicle-Thompson is helping to shape the future of our local hospital, and the NHS, after being appointed as a Governor of University Hospital Southampton.
Rochelle, who studies A Level Biology, Chemistry, English Literature and Music at the college, discovered the opportunity through the college’s tutorial sessions. She was then encouraged to apply for the role by her tutor. After submitting a written application she successfully undertook an interview with members of the Southampton Clinical Commissioning Group.
Representing the Views of Her Peers
Securing the role of the Under 21 Governor means she has the responsibility of gathering the views of her peers. Giving them a voice at the highest level of the organisation. The Council of Governors for UHS plays a key role in ensuring the hospital meets the needs of its communities by gathering views from hospital members from across Southampton. Speaking about the opportunity, former Wildern student Rochelle said:
“I had previously been part of a research group when i had my appendix removed, and i really enjoyed being able to give feedback and put my opinions across, so this role was the perfect opportunity to continue to help in this way. The interview for the role was a little nerve wracking, having to face a panel of interviewers, but they were all really friendly and put me at ease. During the process I had to speak about any relevant experience I had, and they asked questions that evaluated my reasoning and judgement skills – because the role plays a part in helping to influence decisions that affect so many people”
As part of her position of governor Rochelle will meet with the Council of Governors four times a year. Their focus being on finance, public interaction and inclusiveness to drive their discussions forward.
“I’m looking forward to being able to give feedback on how the trust can help the hospital and those who use it. I’m thinking of applying for medicine, so to get an insight into how it all works and being involved in decisions that might help shape my future is really exciting.”
Natasha Stephens, teacher of Biology and Rochelle’s personal tutor at the college spoke of her success:
“We were extremely proud to hear about Rochelle’s success in securing such a fantastic role within our local area. It’s the perfect opportunity for her to help her community, and to give her an insight into how decisions are made and gain a deeper understanding of the trust. This is particularly useful for those aspiring to a career healthcare! It’s also wonderful to see the views and opinions of young people represented at such a high level, and we couldn’t think of someone more suited to the position. We wish her every success with the role and endeavour to support her in carrying out her responsibilities alongside her studies”