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Students experience educational emergency

28 May 2015

Rachel Atkinson

UCLan’s Junior University pupils witness the practical nature of academic courses

Teenagers from across the county have witnessed the work of the emergency services at first-hand thanks to an educational event at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

The Year 10 students watched as two fire engines, from Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service, and a paramedic car, from North West Ambulance Service, responded to an ‘accident’ involving two cars.

The event, which was the catalyst for UCLan’s Junior University (JU) half-term activities, was organised to demonstrate the practical nature of academic subjects on offer at the University and to highlight the dangers of texting while driving.

Throughout the emergency scenario, Preston Watch Manager Dave Robinson and Paramedic Phil Waring talked through the response of the crews as they rescued an injured passenger, played by UCLan Student Ambassador Kathleen Miller.

“JU aims to raise the aspirations, and broaden the knowledge, of high achieving students in the local area and motivates them to consider applying to study at university when the time comes.”

Among the crowd were Our Lady’s Catholic High School students Ebony Alston and Chloë Gudgeon. Ebony said: “It was all very exciting because it gave me an insight into what goes on and who does what in emergency situations like this.” Chloë added: “It was really good to watch because it was something I’ve never experienced before and it showed me what potential jobs I could do if I choose to study on a more practical hands-on course.”

The youngsters attended from a wide variety of schools across Lancashire, including Archbishop Temple School; Ashton Community Science College; Broughton High School; Christ the King Catholic Maths and Computing College; Fulwood Academy; Longridge High School; Our Lady’s Catholic High School; Montgomery High School, in Blackpool; Ss John Fisher and Thomas More RC High School, in Colne; Hameldon High School, in Burnley; Sir John Thursby Community College, in Burnley; UTC Lancashire; Colne Park High School; Pendle Vale College, in Nelson; Shuttleworth College, in Padiham, and Golborne High School, in Wigan.

Dave Robinson said: “It’s important we attend educational events like this because we can share our real life experience with the group and they can ask us questions about the work we do. It’s also integral to us because we can highlight the road safety messages and show them the real damage which can be caused by texting or drinking while driving.”

“It’s also good they can see us in action and maybe that will persuade some of them to become the paramedics of the future.”

Phil Waring added: “We’re reaching the next generation of drivers at this event and it’s important to show them how wearing a seatbelt can save their lifesaving. It’s also good they can see us in action and maybe that will persuade some of them to become the paramedics of the future.”

After the demonstration, the students chose one of three subject strands; health, crime or media; to follow for the rest of the week to see the range of jobs which are involved in an accident. The health strand included the academic areas of paramedic practice, nursing, operating department practice and physiotherapy. The crime strand included police, forensics, fire, law, criminology and psychology while the media strand entailed print, radio and television journalism.

UCLan Senior Marketing Officer Janet Andrew, one of the organisers, said: “JU aims to raise the aspirations, and broaden the knowledge, of high achieving students in the local area and motivates them to consider applying to study at university when the time comes. This half-term activity was about showing the children in an interesting and visual way what career paths are open to them by studying at UCLan and their response was better than anything we could have imagined.”