Nottingham father and son attend university together to pursue a career in mental health nursing

Father and son are currently studying Mental Health Nursing together at Nottingham Trent University (NTU).

Adrian and Kacper Dzialo from Gedling in Nottingham chose to study BSc (Hons) Nursing – Mental Health due to a desire to make a difference and care for vulnerable people.

What is equally impressive is that the Dzialo family will now become a full family of nurses. Adrian’s wife, Alicja, has already been a nurse for some time and her youngest son, Jacob, also wants to follow in her footsteps. Adrian credits his wife as one of the inspirations behind his decision to study nursing.

The couple say that this experience has allowed them to get closer and support each other in their studies.

The two of you hold each other accountable for course deadlines, test your knowledge of the laws and regulations surrounding nursing, and study together.

They also helped each other decide on their placement options, which is also part of their course.

Adrian Dzialo, speaking of his experience studying with his son, said:

“At first, all our friends and family were very surprised when they found out that my son and I would study together at the university.

“Studying Mental Health Nursing has brought us closer together and has helped us realize that we have more in common than we thought. Kacper is much better at planning than I am and has been able to give me advice on planning my assignments.

“I am very proud of him and how hard he works. I have also been able to better understand Alicja’s work experience now that I am also studying to be a nurse.”

Kacper and her father made a decision after attending an open day together at NTU’s Mansfield site. They were given a tour of the campus and nursing facility and shortly thereafter submitted their applications.

NTU’s Mansfield site has strong links to local hospitals. Its facilities include a clinical skills suite where students can practice simulated clinical skills with mannequins, hospital beds, and even real patients who guide students using their own experience in healthcare.

Kacper Dzialo said:

“It has been a very interesting experience studying with my dad and it’s not often that people say they come home and share stories with their dad about their day at university! My little brother Jacob has said that he has been inspired by my passion for nursing and now he too wants to apply to study nursing when he is old enough”.

Kacper decided to study her course at NTU’s Clifton Campus in order to have a little more independence from her father, however, she made the decision to continue living at home.

Philip Clissett, Senior Lecturer in Healthcare at Nottingham Trent University Mansfield, said: “I am very pleased that from the initial experience of the NTU Mansfield open day to now, both Adrian and Kacper have had such an experience. positive with us at NTU. It really is a unique story they have of how they have both been able to navigate studying nursing together, supporting each other along the way.”

In terms of the future after the couple graduate in September 2025, Adrian is considering continuing his studies so that he can pursue a dual qualification with Adult Nursing. Kacper is excited about the many options and routes nursing offers and is even considering working abroad as a nurse in the future.

With only 11% of nurses in the UK being men*, they both hope their stories will encourage more men to consider a career in nursing.

*Source: ‘UK Nursing Workforce Statistics and Facts 2023’


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