MSc Physiotherapy - Anna Mellows

Anna Mellows is a physiotherapist at the James Paget University Hospital, Great Yarmouth.

We spoke with her about her experience on the MSc Physiotherapy at UEA and what she’s been up to since graduating.

What does your current role involve?

Currently I'm working at the James Paget University Hospital as a Band 6 Orthopaedic Physio. It involves working on the trauma and orthopaedic wards. 

When I was doing my MSc, I did a placement at the hospital and I really enjoyed it. There's  a nice team and nice atmosphere. I applied for a Band 5 rotation and got that job and spent a couple of years going around the rotations. That covers work in all the different areas.

Then I took on my current role. I’ve really enjoyed the orthopaedic team and helping with service, improvement and research.

I'm also the student placement coordinator for Physiotherapy at UEA. I co-ordinate where we put the students and support the educators while the students are here and support the students as well.

What inspired you to apply for the MSc Physiotherapy at UEA?

I wasn't living in Norfolk at the time, but I grew up in Norwich so I knew UEA was a good university. 

UEA was one of the few universities that allows you to have graduated over five years ago and apply for the Master’s without doing an extra top-up. I'd graduated about seven years ago. 

I did look at a few different courses then, but UEA suited me because I wanted to do an MSc rather than a BSc so that I would get my qualification more quickly as I was slightly older.

What was your favourite thing about the course?

I really enjoyed that Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy worked and did lots of stuff together. That sets you up well for when you work, too.

Also, I loved that the lecturers have their own specialist research areas. That was really interesting.

Did you learn any skills on your course that you still use to this day?

We learned a lot about service improvement and there was quite a big focus on the course about that. And now I can see why.

Working for the NHS, and trying to make things better with finite resources, gets you thinking about what little things you can improve, so it was useful having done that as part of the course.

How did you prepare for a career?

I chatted to my personal advisor.

They were really helping to talk through things and discuss options for placements.

Did you do any extracurriculars?

There were a number of additional optional courses, like a first aid course and a sports massage course that I paid extra to do.

We used the Sportspark quite a bit for five-a-side and badminton too.

Did you have any career aspirations when you graduated?

Before I started studying, I thought I might go into working with people with learning disabilities as that had been my previous work background.

But I've really enjoyed working in hospital because you have a team around you and can play off each. Physio is so broad, there are different avenues you can go down. 

Any words of advice for prospective students who might be considering doing an MSc in physiotherapy?

I would really recommend it. It was it was hard work but worth it.

The lecturers are knowledgeable and they're all doing research so it’s a great opportunity to talk to them. If I was doing it again, I’d try to get involved in more of the research projects they were doing. 


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