This article is an edited version that originally appeared on the Manchester Evening News.
The University of Manchester strives to build a greater Manchester, a place in which we can all thrive.
With an impressive 45% of graduates choosing to live and pursue careers within the north-west region, it's unsurprising that the University has such a brilliant impact, supporting our communities to have access to inspiring education, a blossoming natural environment and quality healthcare services.
More than 3,000 of The University of Manchester's students graduate in healthcare-related programmes each year, and there are currently more than 2,616 graduates that the University is in touch with, working across the region's hospitals and NHS trusts.
“It's so important for the people of Greater Manchester to have access to the very best healthcare.”
Committed to helping others
For nursing graduate Adam Mellor, ensuring the people of his beloved home city have access to the very best healthcare services has always been his greatest ambition. Adam loves to help people, and after receiving his offer of a place at The University of Manchester, he vowed to do just that.
After securing employment as a nurse at Stepping Hill Hospital, where he works on a busy surgical assessment ward, graduate Adam hopes to provide outstanding healthcare services to the people of Greater Manchester – and put a smile on their faces, too.
"It's so important for the people of Greater Manchester to have access to the very best healthcare," Adam said.
"I have lived in Manchester all my life, it's a city I am incredibly fond of and passionate about, and I want to be able to help the people who make up our wonderful Manchester community.
"It's so important for me to be making that positive difference, my job is so rewarding and I feel so lucky to have been able to pursue a career that was always a dream for me, thanks to The University of Manchester.
"There is something so rewarding about helping somebody who comes to us in a really vulnerable state, to be able to help administer their treatment over a period of time, and then witness the incredible difference it makes and their recovery.
"Seeing a patient ready for discharge, all packed up and in their own clothes, ready to go home to see their families with the most lovely expression of pure excitement on their face, is such a fulfilling feeling. To know they are satisfied with the level of care they have received too makes the job all the more worthwhile."
“We're here as advocates for patients and to support them wholeheartedly at a very difficult time.”
Supporting the frontline response to COVID-19
As the frontline against COVID-19, NHS staff have been under enormous pressure throughout the pandemic, and there has been a national shortage of many key healthcare professionals, which has only exacerbated the strain on our region's NHS and care services.
As key providers of medical, health and social care training, The University of Manchester has been well-equipped to fill this shortfall, with many talented, highly skilled students and staff, just like Adam, ready to step onto the frontline and help those in need.
For Adam, the prospect of a career in healthcare was something he always imagined to be immeasurably rewarding. But he never anticipated the huge sense of fulfilment he would feel after supporting patients through the pandemic.
"Whenever you take care of somebody, you have it in the forefront of your mind that your patient is somebody's loved one, somebody's family member, and you're making a difference to more than just your patient's life," he said.
"Throughout the pandemic, that was more important than ever, because families struggled to actually see their loved ones in hospital, and therefore, it was all the more important for us to provide emotional support and communicate properly over the phone, to reassure people their loved ones were safe and receiving plenty of love and care.
"The University of Manchester played a huge part in that. They don't just equip you with the academic knowledge, but the fantastic range of workshops and courses on offer throughout your studies also arm you with so much real-life, practical experience that you can apply to real scenarios, which ensures the level of care you're providing is phenomenal.
"I currently work on a surgical assessment ward, where we get patients from A&E, GP referrals, 111 calls and even patients sent to us directly from other wards, so we see people in very vulnerable states. People come into hospital and it's unfamiliar and can be frightening, especially during the pandemic when we had to start wearing visors, masks and gowns.
"There was a lot of fear built up for patients, and it really reiterated how much of a support network we are, as medical professionals. We're here to provide care, compassion and reassurance, and to listen to people's worries and anxieties and provide the support they need. We're here as advocates for patients and to support them wholeheartedly at a very difficult time.
"We can make such a difference to their lives, and it makes me so very proud to be able to do that for a living."
World-leading social and environmental impact
The University of Manchester’s extensive and innovative research delivers economic, environmental, social, cultural, health and wellbeing benefits on a global scale. It delivers benefits through its partnership with the NHS trusts in Health Innovation Manchester and the Manchester Academic Health Science Centre, within the context of Greater Manchester’s devolved health and social care budget.
In 2021, the university topped the table of more than 1,200 universities from across the globe on action taken towards the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The UN's 17 SDGs are the world's call to action on the most pressing challenges and opportunities facing humanity and the natural world, and with many of these issues at the heart of its core values, it's no surprise the University ranked number one in the world.
“A big spirit of Manchester is to push yourself, accept yourself, embrace challenges and jump out of your comfort zone.”
"When I visited the universities around Manchester and down south when choosing where to study, what really stood out to me about The University of Manchester was the incredible expertise of the staff, and the fact the university is full of leading researchers, which is so impressive," Adam said.
"The University has such an enormous impact, not just here in Manchester, but globally, and I knew I wanted to be a part of that from the moment I attended their induction day, I just fell in love with the university, the course, everything.
"The University academics are some of the leading researchers across the whole world, and to be a part of that is just phenomenal.
"I felt so welcome from the offset, I didn't just feel like a college student, I felt like I was already a part of the University before I even received my offer. The expertise of everyone at the University, from the tutors to the incredible researchers is amazing, and they were trying to encourage me to develop my existing knowledge before I even came to the university.
"From day one, everybody at the University was invested in me, my chosen career and my future, and they opened my mind to so many areas that I hadn't even considered before. It was so incredible to have so much support from the academics from the offset.
"University is tough, it is, but the incredible support from The University of Manchester got me through.
"Firstly, the University gave me an opportunity to gain the degree I had longed for, but they haven't just given me a great job, they have given me great employability, too. They open the doors to so many incredible opportunities and give you access to so many specialities.
"We did an ethical grand challenges course as part of the Stellify programme, which ran across three years, and so many workshops and online activities which arm you with real-life wisdom that you can apply to real-life scenarios. One thing which really stood out to me was the workplace ethics workshop, which covered things like unconscious bias, and I have really reflected back onto that and ensured I incorporate what I have learned into my everyday practice.
"You get so much more than just academic education at the University. They support you in a way that really reaffirms your self-belief in your ability to do what you’re doing. The University supplies you with the latest knowledge which really does boost your employability so much.
"My time at the University has been an incredibly positive experience. A big spirit of Manchester is to push yourself, accept yourself, embrace challenges and jump out of your comfort zone. If you do that at The University of Manchester, you really will succeed.
"I hope that my journey will inspire others to consider a career in nursing, and to pursue it through The University of Manchester. I also hope it can raise awareness of the incredible healthcare services available in and around the city, because so many people aren't aware of the services available to them."
Find out how we’re leading the world on sustainable development and read the University’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2021/22 report.
Discover more about becoming a student and studying at Manchester.