Students and staff put through their paces by local army reserve unit
More than 300 student nurses from the University of Dundee have been working hard to develop their team-working, leadership skills and physical and emotional resilience -- all under the supervision of some of Scotland’s army reservists.
Exercise Team Spirit will see students from both the School’s Dundee and Kirkcaldy campuses placed into groups and asked to tackle a series of physically and mentally demanding command tasks, with their performance graded by members of 225 (Scottish) Medical Regiment.
Activities have been selected to test a range of skills, including mental agility, response time, observational skills, physical ability, intelligence and general knowledge.
Teams will be required to consider the individual characteristics and attributes of their members, which will allow them to decide who takes the leadership role on each of the tasks.
Tasks must be completed within 30 minutes, with points being awarded for exemplary team work and strong leadership skills.
The winning teams from each day will be awarded a certificate from the School of Nursing & Health Sciences recognising their achievement.
Events are taking place this week and into early December.
“Teamwork, communication, decision-making and leadership are core attributes necessary in newly-qualified nurses,” said Tom McConnachie, a lecturer at the School of Nursing and organiser of Exercise Team Spirit.
“Student nurses also have to develop both physical and emotional resilience to face the challenge of working within busy clinical environments, where they can experience the full range of emotional distress associated with death, dying and chronic illness.”
“Exercise Team Spirit is designed to help students identify and develop teamwork and leadership skills early in their educational programme, and give them an understanding of how a team is led, how roles within that team are determined, and how to improve their communication and problem-solving.”
Staff Sergeant Stephen Tee said:
“It makes complete sense for us as a medical regiment to be working with nursing students, as our skillsets are very similar.
“The command tasks we chose for the students participating in Exercise Team Spirit are a mixture of enjoyable and physical, and so far the students have been brilliant -- and have exceeded our expectations.
“Leadership and teamwork exercises form the bedrock of everything we do in the army, and the nurses have been good as any soldier.”
Professor Margaret Smith OBE, Dean of the School of Nursing & Health Sciences, said:
"It's excellent to see this partnership work developing, and I hope we will be able to build a range of similar activity over the next few years."
Exercise Team Spirit is a collaboration between the University’s School of Nursing, Institute of Sport and Exercise, Student Support Services, and the army’s 225 (Scottish) Medical Regiment.
For more information on studying Nursing at the University of Dundee, visit our course pages.