Nichola Robertson travelled the world as an undergraduate but it is back home in Edinburgh where she is having the most impact as an Anatomy and Teaching Surgical Fellow.
MBChB BMedSci Psychology (Hons)
|Year of Graduation||
Your time at the University
I have always loved Edinburgh - she is such a beautiful city. I was born here and it felt right to study here. One of the reasons at the heart of my decision was a link to my past. My Dad studied geography and teaching at the University of Edinburgh. He died when I was very young and I felt coming here brought me slightly closer to hm. It also meant I stayed close to my Mum who means the world to me.
I remember sitting in the Anatomy Lecture Theatre at the Old Medical School for the first time and the sense of history that overwhelms you there. We used to joke that being a medical student in Edinburgh was a bit like being a student wizard with the resemblance of the buildings at Teviot Place to Hogwarts and the variety of classes you took; granted it was pharmacology not potions and sociology not muggle studies.
I worked part-time during University to afford flights for the (initially) long summers. The first summer at university I worked for Disney in Vero Beach, Florida and lived the American Dream. During the second summer my best friend Ashley and I flew to Australia. I worked in a bar in Sydney for a while then we travelled the incredible East Coast - skydiving, white-water rafting and scuba-diving as we went.
For the third summer we explored South-East Asia. I got to kiss a tiger and hitch a ride on an elephant in Thailand but Vietnam was my favourite. We had to wait for our elective in 5th year before we could travel together again and we chose to work at hospitals in Tobago and St. Vincent's in the Caribbean.
We used to joke that being a medical student in Edinburgh was a bit like being a student wizard with the resemblance of the buildings at Teviot Place to Hogwarts and the variety of classes you took; granted it was pharmacology not potions and sociology not muggle studies.
Tell us about your Experiences since leaving the University
I completed my foundation training in Edinburgh after graduating and am currently working as an Anatomy and Teaching Surgical Fellow at the University. I love teaching and it has been amazing to come back to teach at the Old Medical School where the magic all began several years ago. As well as teaching anatomy I teach the final year students on their surgical placement at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh and have been awarded 'Surgical Teacher of the month' several times for my efforts.
My proudest achievement this year has been setting up the 'Art & Anatomy Edinburgh' project with surgical trainee Megan Anderson and artist Kimberley Simpson. We designed a course to teach medical students innovative ways to learn anatomy through different art media. Following the success of our pilot course we have recently been awarded a 'Principal's Teaching Award Scheme' Grant to enable us to make the project sustainable. In June 2015 we organised an 'Art & Anatomy Edinburgh', a public engagement event with American anatomical artist 'Danny Quirk'. Local surgeons and art lecturers delivered workshops teaching anatomy using clay and body-paint.
Read more about Art & Anatomy Edinburgh
I am about to start core surgical training in Edinburgh in August. My surgical career choice was inspired by my clinical teachers and research projects I undertook whilst studying here and I am very excited about the future.
Believe in yourself! To quote the wonderful Walt Disney,
all our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.