By David McGuire 

Can anyone be a nurse? In a time of staff shortages and high demand, perceptions of the role could be hindering an influx of new nurses from entering the workplace. David shares his career goals and how his personal values motivated an interest in the profession. 

I want to be a nurse because I like to help people. I want to have the opportunity to help someone help themselves and put a bit of kindness back into the world. 

In today’s world, especially with social media, there’s a lot of pressure to be perfect. When I qualify, I want to work with teenagers and people who find difficulty in that environment. 

The brain is such a wonderful and delicate thing, it really intrigues me. I believe that someone having the right support to get through hard times and challenging phases of their life really makes all the difference. 

The hope is that, one day, I can help someone change their world. That’s what pushed me towards nursing.

Nurses support people at the right place and right time they need it.

I’ve tried to encourage friends to take an interest in the field and think about nursing as a career path. There’s such a wide breadth of roles you can do as a nurse – it’s not all just being in a hospital unit with your arms full of bandages. It’s open to everybody. 

I suppose there’s a perception that men aren’t supposed to be caring. It’s not ‘macho’ to be sensitive or kind. Even if you do want to help people, there’s an assumption that being a nurse isn’t for you. 

That’s a mistake. The fact that I’m here, doing it, cuts through that. 

Wanting to be a male nurse hasn’t presented any issues for me. It’s an enjoyable experience and I don’t consider myself to be any different than other students on the course. 

David McGuire is a Mental Health Nursing student in his first year at Edinburgh Napier University. 

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