Following his graduation from his Level 7 degree, Sonny says he will take some time out before returning to college to gain a Level 8 honours degree
Bachelor of Science in Applied Healthcare graduate Sonny Simbarasi who is originally from Zimbabwe studied level 5 nursing studies at Sligo College of Further Education before moving across the country to Waterford.
Why did you choose Waterford Institute of Technology?
I think Waterford chose me. I was just looking for counties that are more manageable and more convenient. WIT is the number one institute in Ireland so I think it speaks for itself; crossing all the way from Sligo and there is many other colleges in between but I chose Waterford because of its location and the people in Waterford, its history and its reputation.
Did you enjoy your time in WIT?
I found it really good the way the lecturers work with the students, they’ll try by all means to help you with your assignments and with everything you do. I think the most important thing was the help I personally got from the lecturers throughout my years in college, not only myself but other students benefited a lot from our lecturers from the institute. Everyone around the college was willing to work with us. I ended up being a student ambassador for the previous year and a peer to peer mentor because I wanted to share my learning ideas and skills with upcoming students. This is what stood out to me when studying in WIT.
How did Peer2Peer add to your college experience?
This helped me much with my communication skills, as I was a working with a different groups of students every time. Being a P2P help me boost my confidence which helped to do class presentations, and it was great experience working with other students from different courses. Above all it made me a great team player through team building exercises.
Did you enjoy work placement?
Absolutely, because some things you can hear them being talked about, you can see them in newspapers or all over the internet and you’ll say that you have no idea what they are talking about. But if you go and do your placement like mine in University Hospital Waterford I came to learn more. On placement one department that was really fascinating was CSSD, central sterile services department, where they wash the instruments for operating procedures. The department makes sure instruments are safe for use so I quite benefited a lot and now I know how to keep things sterile and basic hygiene like hand-washing and the importance of it. I learned quite a lot within my work placement.
Have you any advice for students considering studying Applied Healthcare?
My advice for people that want to start my course is that you need to ask yourself do you want to work within the healthcare sector, that’s the most important thing you need to ask yourself. Don’t think about how much money you are going to be getting, because if you look only at how much you are going to be getting; yeah you might say this is my job, but is it for you. Lots of people go into a course and then end up saying ‘that course wasn’t for me’. So I encourage all students who are thinking of starting my course to look further into it and make sure it’s a good decision. If they can come for the open day it would be good because they need to know about the course. But in short, it’s a great course.
What words of advice do you have for new students?
Get involved in college. Find activities to participate in, being active helps reduce stress and help to keep you organised. When you need help go get it, WIT has tutoring labs, study groups, you have your lecturers as study advisors reach out to them and get advice they are willing to help.
Are you happy to be graduating today?
You have no idea, it’s like a dream. It’s like reaching a final destination, it’s quite assuring to graduate and it’s rewarding because of the past three years hard work and the effort I put into my college work. Being here today it just acknowledges all the hard work that the students here put in and it shows how much WIT is doing for students including myself. So yeah, I’m thrilled, I am happy to be here today and to be graduating.
What are your plans now?
After graduating from a level 7 I plan to further my education in the future. I’d be happy to further my studies however for now I am taking a year off but I’ll be coming back next year to do a level 8. So this year off I want to use it to look at what’s happening in the healthcare sector and look at is as an employee, as a worker and not as a student.
I am hoping to explore the environment within the healthcare sector and to see if there is any other further research studies I can personally undertake, I’m also looking for employment which I understand there is plenty of, however there are some things that I would like to implement with being in the healthcare sector, so I am just going to take this time to reflect on it and look at the things that I did in college and focus on the more practical side of it and maybe I can be influential within our healthcare sector in Ireland or who knows, globally.
After completing my course I...
I’m still on the same job I started during my second year in college. There were a couple of other interviews which were cancelled due to Covid-19. With my course you are never out of work but you choose where you want to work.
How did your experience at WIT help get you to where you are now?
Maturity. College brings maturity in people, it made me be a responsible person and also use my initiative anytime within the medical field.