Mildura's next generation of Maternal and Child Health Nurses

Midwives aspiring to upskill to Maternal and Child Health Nurses now have the opportunity to work and study, thanks to an innovative partnership between Mildura Rural City Council and La Trobe University.

Mildura Rural City Council (MRCC) have initiated a Student Maternal and Child Health Nurse program, whereby nursing professionals are supported to study La Trobe’s Graduate Diploma in Child, Family and Health Nursing.  Emma Golsworthy is the first student to go through the program and says there’s nowhere else in the state offering a program like it.

The main reason I chose to study was because I was really interested in community-based work.  I’d heard on the grapevine that MRCC had been considering the idea, so when it came up - I applied and was successful.  I was really attracted to the fact that I could work and study on the job.  Nobody else in the state does a program like this!  It’s a great concept to encourage and support people into the workforce.”

The program sees the Student Maternal and Child Health Nurse paid three days a week to work in the Enhanced Maternal Child and Health Service (EMCH).

“The Enhanced program is offered to select families as an extension of Universal Maternal Child Health program and offers flexible supports to families who benefit.  I do most of my visits to family homes and am supervised by a qualified MCH Nurse to undertake key ages and stages visits.  Then I undertake one placement day a week in a local center and Fridays I keep as study days to do my online modules, readings and essays.”

Emma says she’s been pleasantly surprised as to how much she’s enjoying studying again.

“I’m really enjoying studying.  I didn’t know if I would because it had been so long - in fact it’s been 20 years since I studied Midwifery!  But I really am enjoying learning again and I’ve got really good support from the other nurses in the team.

“Everyone is so supportive at La Trobe.  That’s why I wanted to go with La Trobe again as well.  I studied Midwifery at La Trobe - so I feel part of the family now!  I feel like I couldn’t even think of going to another University!”

The course at La Trobe University is offered online, which enables rural and remote students to study from home, supported by online library, teaching resources, email and ZOOM access to university academics.

As well as part time employment while studying, MRCC offers students access to up to ten paid study leave days and a reimbursement of $2,000 per year to assist with course costs. In addition to this financial support, the Department of Health and Human Services provided $10,000 scholarships to students in 2020.

“I would definitely recommend any midwives out there who are considering doing it, do it.  Council are very supportive, with assistance programs in place.  I’m really excited to finish and look forward to consolidating my skills to help local families.

The position is now available for applications, please visit Mildura Rural City Council's website for more information.

ENDS

Media enquiries
Ashlee Ryan, Advisor, Marketing & Engagement  
T 03 5051 4069 a.ryan2@latrobe.edu.au

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