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Lynn Dale

As a practicing nurse for almost 30 years, you might think Lynn Dale knows all there is to know.

But there is always more to learn, she says, having completed an MSc in Advancing Practice at the University of Worcester.

Lynn graduated in November 2011 after five years of part time study, alongside her full time job as a Respiratory Specialist Practitioner at the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch.

“It was very challenging trying to juggle everything,” said the 49-year-old, who lives in Solihull. “Nursing is not a 9-5 job and it was difficult to fit in studying around that while also looking after a family.”

Lynn trained as a nurse in her home City of Edinburgh in the early 1980s when nursing was not a degree profession. She has since completed a degree in Nursing with Health Studies before going on to do her Masters.

“I did the MSc not only to improve my knowledge and skills but also to improve patient care,” said the mother-of-two. “I think learning and improving care is life long and that’s why I did the Masters. I had never really considered doing a Masters before but I’m really pleased that I did.”

Lynn completed her Masters with Distinction despite undergoing major neurosurgery surgery for a degenerative disc disease. Intensive physiotherapy and hydrotherapy was part of the rehabilitation programme which put back plans for her dissertation by a few months.

“I do a lot of cycling, which has really helped to keep me sane and fit through everything,” she said. “Completing the Masters has had a huge impact upon my practice at work. The non-medical prescribing and advanced health assessment skills have added to the wealth of clinical experience gained in the past. As a result more nursing-led clinics have been developed locally. Historically patients had to travel 140 mile round trip for some services which are now provided locally at Redditch.”