Hi, I’m Ciarán. I previously spent 6 months working as a physiotherapist assistant in an SEN school. Many of the students I worked with suffered from cerebral palsy. I have begun studying physiotherapy in the hope that it will enable me to do more to help people like these students.
As an assistant I delivered pre-determined programmes and therapies. As a physiotherapist I will have a deeper knowledge and experience as well as greater independence. This will allow me to make more decisions based on my own observations with a student on how best to improve the treatment they receive.
Whilst I was an assistant I ran sessions with the students, working on their physical abilities. During these sessions I got to know the individuals and what worked for them. By reflecting on these sessions I could often figure out why a student had struggled in a certain aspect.
Often the problem was not a physical one. For example, I would do a weekly treadmill session with one of my students; initially he was not keen on the sessions, but would not explain why. His session resulted in him being taken out of his class. I included a second student in the session and instantly my initial student became far more engaged. I had worked out that his lack of interest came from feeling excluded from the rest of his class.
I often encountered problems like this which had no obvious solution; however problem solving is one of my strengths. I believe that by applying this to the knowledge I will gain from studying physiotherapy, I will be able to think more critically about the sessions I do and then come up with even greater outcomes to improve them.
My tuition fees are costing me £26724. I have earnt £5,000 from working and taken out a £10,000 student loan; this still leaves me £11,724 short of the cost of my total fees. I’m going to give my all to the next two years studying to be the best physiotherapist I can be. I was lucky to get to know such a brilliant set of people; everyday they had me laughing. I was surprised and in awe of the mental resilience and the positivity that so many of them possessed.
I want to do as much as I can to enable myself to help more people with cerebral palsy to make the most of their physical capabilities. If you could kindly offer a contribution to this I would be immensely grateful, no matter how small. Gaining support to help me to qualify will only increase my desire to deliver the best treatment I can.