RCM Conference Experience!

A few weeks back now, I headed to the Royal College of Midwives Education and Research Conference. The conferences were on two separate days and the research conference was actually the first of it's kind. 
The conference was so well organised and had an interesting selection and variety of stalls available to view and talk to throughout the breaks.We also got fed so well! Constant snacks and refreshments and even more, a warm and well-nourished meal. 
I didn't really know what to expect going into the first day of the series. The education aspect ended up being really interesting and hearing the perspective from multiple different university stand points. Also, hearing about the different options was very eye-opening. I've always loved mentoring and tutoring, but in reality this all comes under the guise of teaching and I am very extended to continue that through supervising students in practise in the future, but also perhaps one day becomes a lecturer myself. 
In the evening, the RCM presented a number of Honorary Fellowships to those midwives who have done incredible things. It was fascinating to hear all their achievements. Most of all, I was blown away by Sarah Chitongo. Her story on the night was gobsmacking, but what was more amazing was the next day. I was sat next to hear, hearing about everything even more. She then did a presentation showcasing her research into how midwives care for black and ethnic minority women, before racing off to do to speak to the Prime Minister on the BAME issues that are rife. Wow!
My highlight from the first two days was without a doubt, meeting my role model in midwifery, Jacqueline Dunkley-Bent. She is the first ever Chief of Midwifery and is such an incredible asset to have on our team in the public eye. It was truly inspiring to listen to her talk so openly and honestly about the current working environment (which has obviously now changed). If anyone wants to listen to it, it was LIVE streamed and can be caught up here.

As part of the research project I have been involved in through the university, undertaking the project as a co-researcher alongside but additionally to my Midwifery degree. One of the main reasons I attended the two days of conferences was because on both days, the research was being presented. On the first day, the key staff involved presented it from an educational perspective. Unfortunately, Bea was unable to present on the day due to returning from Milan mid-coronavirus outbreak, but instead of including me in the presentation instead, she pre-recorded video clips which did ultimately work well.

For the research day, I headed up the presentation alone which was incredibly overwhelming and whilst, I don't particularly think I did a great job, so many lovely members of the RCM came up to me afterwards to say how amazing it was and lots of other positive feedback. It was a great experience for me to be involved in and I am so incredibly grateful to have the opportunity to present on the day. Not only that but I was the only student presenting for the full two-day programme
It was an amazing opportunity to meet other's from a huge range of backgrounds. I spoke to so many other university staff who were all very keen to somehow also incorporate research facilitation into the undergraduate programme so it was great to hear the positive impact the project has had indirectly, as well as directly.
A huge thank you to the amazing staff at the Royal College of Midwives, a massive shout out to all the staff who supported me and a round of applause to myself for still doing it despite everything else!

Ps. Please note, some of these pictures have been taken for the RCM Website and were taken by the official photographers. Thank you for sharing.

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