La Trobe lends a hand to South Australian students

South Australian Nursing students won’t be disadvantaged by border restrictions after La Trobe University has offered them the chance to take part in lab sessions in Mildura.

Flinders University Nursing student, Chantelle Frankcombe, was unable to get across the border to take part in clinical lab sessions when South Australia tightened their borders restrictions.

“Last semester our Dean of Education provided me a letter that allowed me to get across the border.  However when restrictions tightened, I was stuck!  My Nursing Coordinator at Flinders told me she’d been in touch with La Trobe here in Mildura and within 24 hours it was all organised.  It was really nice of La Trobe to let me be part of the lab sessions here, I’m very grateful.

“Doing your clinical labs is compulsory before going on placement. I was so relieved that La Trobe was able to help out.  It’s been really stressful, not being able to get across the border.  Now that I’ve undertaken these labs, I can go on placement and know I’ll still be able to finish my degree in time next year,” says Chantelle.

Mildura Nursing Lecturer Sandy Connor said La Trobe were happy to help Chantelle out and will continue talks to help further students out later in the year.

“To us, it doesn’t matter what university you’re at, we want to see every nursing student finish their course on time to join the much needed nursing workforce.  It’s been great to have Chantelle as part of our lab sessions, she’s a very motivated student and I’m happy we were able to help her out.

“Whilst we are still undertaking classes online, we are offering modified lab sessions face to face, adhering to strict COVID-19 protocols, to ensure our nursing students can meet their accreditation requirements at the end of their course.

“We know there are a couple of first year Flinders students in the same situation as Chantelle.  If the borders stay closed, we will welcome them into our La Trobe first year labs later in the year, so they are not disadvantaged,” said Ms Connor.

Dr Deb Neal, Head of Campus, says La Trobe is always committed to positive change and outstanding student experience.

“I’m really proud to see that these important values of La Trobe have translated to the experience of a student from another university.”

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