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BUILD THE FUTURE – Matthew’s healthy approach to Degree Apprenticeships


“My learning is really giving me an insight into my field and how I can apply it in a medical setting.”

“My learning is really giving me an insight into my field and how I can apply it in a medical setting.”

Matthew Lloyd, 25 originally from South Africa and now living in Leicester, is taking a healthy approach to his career by studying for a Healthcare Practitioner Degree Apprenticeship at the University of Wolverhampton.

He is currently working as an Apprentice Respiratory Physiologist at Leicester University Glenfield Hospital with his studies funded by his employer through the Apprenticeship Levy. He studies two days a week and is in the second year of his three-year course.

Matthew had an uncertain start in education when his family moved him from Durban, South Africa to the UK because of a lack of support when he was studying for his GCSEs.

He was struggling with maths, but once settled in England, he started to do really well at school and secured three A Levels going on to study Sports & Exercise Science at university. Matthew struggled with the academic study and left with a Third Class degree.  Unsure of his subject choice, he considered teaching but started to work as barman.

He said: “I didn’t really get along with the course I had chosen at university and I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do in terms of a career.  Then I considered looking at roles in the NHS. It seemed like a great organisation to work for, with opportunities for promotion.”

Matthew’s mum is a nurse, his dad is an ex-paramedic and his grandad is a pharmacist, so the medical pathway seemed like a good choice for him. 

“I’m completely at home at the NHS,” he said: “In my role I deal with testing patients for issues with lungs looking at things like asthma, emphysema and, at the minute, effects of Covid-19 and I work in outpatients, looking at GP referrals.

“The course is 100% helping me in the workplace, the assignments give me lots of information and force me to undertake research that’s very much relevant to my practice – looking specifically at underlying knowledge we deal with on a day to day basis.  My learning is really giving me an insight into my field and how I can apply it in a medical setting.

“Even though we are doing lots of online learning due to the pandemic, this really works for me as I struggle with traditional lectures which is why I didn’t do so well when I studied for my undergraduate degree.

“The level of commitment shown by University staff and the support they have offered me has been fantastic.”

Matthew’s ambition is to become a fully qualified Respiratory Physiologist.

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