Emma Laing, Healthcare Skills Boost

Following an injury that left her unable to continue on her planned career trajectory Emma Laing went looking for new path and found her way onto one of West Lothian College’s Skills Boost courses. We spoke to Emma to hear about her journey with the college and what her plans for the future are.

“Before I applied for the Healthcare Skills Boost, I was finishing a degree in Criminology and Sociology whilst also recovering from a knee injury and surgery. Due to my knee injury, I was not able to apply for Police Scotland, so I was looking at changing my career path.

“I originally looked into the SWAP Course through West Lothian College, however, I was unable to apply for this as I have only just received my BA (Hons). I have always known I wanted to work with people and help people as much as I can, so nursing was always a possibility for me.”

Emma discussed how she found the Skills Boost:

“It was by chance that I had seen the Healthcare Skills Boost course on the West Lothian College website whilst looking for avenues to go into the health care sector and it looked like it would be the perfect steppingstone into the career I want. As I did not have any health care experience, this would also provide me with learning new skills that I would need in order to work in the sector.”

Skills boosts are short bursts of training to connect people to jobs in industry sectors that are recruiting, initially developed during the 2020 Covid-19 lockdown. The courses offer upskilling for those looking to advance in their career or a new set of skills to facilitate a career change, like Emma’s.

Emma is now planning her next steps in her new career:

“My future goals are to gain experience as a Clinical Support Worker within the hospital, then apply for Paediatric Nursing at University. The experience that I will gain from this course will be invaluable for the future.

“The Healthcare Skills Boost has been a fantastic opportunity for me to learn new skills and build on ones that I already have. It is a very interesting and intense two weeks, but the people that I have met whilst doing this course and everything I have learned has been amazing! I would really recommend this course if you are wanting a career change and also want a taster of what working in the health care sector could be like.”