Keiran Randazzo - Speech and Language Therapy
As he wanted to work as a Speech and Language Therapist, Keiran knew he needed to take a degree in the subject – but our Speech and Language Therapy degree stood out because of the range and quality of work placements offered. Having taken advantage of the many opportunities available at the University, he was able to line up a job in the field before he graduated.
I knew I wanted to pursue a career in Speech and Language Therapy and you need to complete this specific degree to become accredited to practise as a Speech and Language Therapist. The main factor which made me choose to study at BCU was the work placements, which really helped me prepare for the professional role once I graduated. All accredited Speech and Language Therapy courses in the UK are required to contain placements, but I know that BCU has some of the longest, most intensive placement blocks. Additionally, I really felt that the placement co-ordinators took into account my own personal preferences regarding clinical areas and the course staff did their best to place me somewhere relevant to my clinical areas of interest.
All the staff were approachable and I always felt like they were happy to discuss any queries or concerns I had. Whenever I needed support, I never had any difficulty accessing this. This ranged from academic advice regarding assignments to general friendly reassurance and advice regarding non-academic concerns too.
The course prepared me well for the professional role. I had a job waiting for me before I had graduated and I’m sure that the links I made during my placements helped me secure this role. The course provided me with the knowledge and skills I needed to start my career with confidence and, due to the extended work placement blocks, the step from studying to practising did not feel like too much of a jump.
A great location
The location was perfect for me as it was central enough for easy travel to visit friends and my fiancé at other universities in other cities, while also being close to my family. Also, I love the city of Birmingham. It is amazingly diverse and has something for everyone. The City South Campus where my course was based is in an amazing location with lots of places for good ‘green’ walks which make you forget you’re even in a big city.
I also took advantage of a variety of extra opportunities during my studies. For example, after achieving a high grade in my First Year Anatomy and Physiology exam, I was offered a part-time role working for the University as a Physiology Tutor for the new first-year cohort. I then presented at a teaching conference about the success of this tutor programme.
Where I am now
I currently work as a Speech and Language Therapist in the community, as part of Dudley Rehabilitation Service. Lots of Speech Therapists work with children in schools or in clinics; but I specifically work with adults with a variety of diagnoses such as stroke, Parkinson’s disease, acquired brain injury, multiple sclerosis and dementia. I assess and treat patients with a variety of communication and swallowing disorders. I see patients at home, in residential homes and in clinic at a small community hospital. I also work on the Stroke Ward at the local Acute Hospital.
There’s always a lot going on at the University for you to get involved in. You’ll meet new people, learn new things and gain experience which will improve your career prospects when you graduate.