There are plenty of things you can take part in outside of your degree during your time at Essex, and one area I decided to focus on during my second year was first aid. I came across the St John’s ambulance LINKS society stall at fresher’s fair and signed up to find out more. I then attended the first welcome meeting and it really opened my eyes to how important learning first aid is! I then got my membership and started attending the weekly sessions. I found these sessions really detailed and useful; I loved the way they spoke about the topic that the session would be on first, and then we did a practical task on the activity. This way of learning worked really well for me! One of the standout sessions for me was performing CPR on a full size CPR manikin, I found it really difficult to keep going and it made me realise how difficult it actually is to do, but how necessary it is to know these first aid skills.
For their 10 year anniversary last year, they put on FREE first aid training classes. There were two to choose from and I picked the Basic First Aid training course. For this I had to sign up at the SU reception and pay a £10 deposit (which I got back at the end of the session) and then attend the training session. I think the session itself was something like 3 hours, and it was a mix of theory and practical aspects. We were also given a pack with a notepad, pen, first aid reference guide and also a packet of examination gloves and a resuscitation face shield. A couple of weeks after the session I was sent an email letting me know that I could go and pick up my first aid certificate from the SU reception , which is valid for 3 years. I really found this training so beneficial and I’m so glad I decided to sign up. For anyone interested in learning first aid, I really recommend signing up and going to the society introduction session to find out more, it’s really one of the most worthwhile things I’ve done at University to date!