Helping the community, lifelong learning, and a career that never gets boring: this is what nursing is like.

Registered Nurses and lecturers in the University of Tasmania’s College of Health and Medicine, Grace Bennett-Daly (lecturer in Nursing, above left) and Michele Dowlman (lecturer in Bioscience, above right), together with Nurse Practitioner Jane Laidlaw, have helped establish a free health service for homeless people.

Mission Health is a free nurse-led drop-in health clinic that runs out of City Mission every Thursday morning.

After organisations City Mission and TasPrac reached an in-principle agreement to operate a clinic, the University identified an opportunity to contribute to the project. This three-way collaboration resulted in Mission Health.

Grace said the endeavour has been “really exciting”.

“Every week it’s getting busier and busier. Last week we had 14 clients through in the space of three hours,” she said. 

Last week we offered free flu vaccinations which has been a great way to promote the clinic and to encourage clients to return for other health needs.

Grace has been working for the University for a year and said she has been able to develop her teaching skills considerably.

“I’ve had the opportunity as well to take part in research and other projects like Mission Health.”

Grace originally wanted to become a doctor but changed her mind when she realised the multitude of career options nursing offered. 

“I realised I had made a great career move choosing nursing, in the sense that there are so many different avenues to go down,” she said. 

The healthcare industry is ever-evolving. It really requires you as an individual to continually develop and learn new things, and it never gets boring.

Michele began her nursing career at just 17 years of age. Partially hospital-trained, she realised that nursing was the only career for her. After raising a family, she came to University to get her Nursing degree and now she shares her expertise with students, lecturing in Bioscience.

The two things I love about my job as a teacher is one: seeing lightbulbs go off over students’ heads, and two: that I’m getting paid every day to learn,” she said.

“It’s just amazing.”

Michele is thrilled to be working with Mission Health.

I’m very grateful to be able to provide some service. I see it as an amazing learning opportunity.

Like Grace, Michele originally wanted to become a doctor.

“What I discovered is that nurses have so much more involvement with patients than doctors do. That’s what draws me to being a nurse. I love understanding people.”

Grace and Michele are hopeful that Mission Health’s future is bright, with the potential for expansion, and for health students to assist patients as part of their education.

Find out more about Mission Health here.

Applications are now open to study Nursing in 2020. Make an impact in your community. Apply now.