Diverse student placement finds that 'anybody can be a leader'

Angie Hulst, a third year physiotherapy at University of Brighton and Grace Ogunlola, another final year student, completed a leadership placement with Sussex Community NHS Trust over a six-week period. 

Third-year physiotherapy student, Angie Hulst, learned how everyone can become an effective leader.

The placement involved developing an understanding of leadership and the effects of leadership in the NHS. 

In addition, they had individual projects to develop resources.

Grace highlighted key areas in falls prevention services while Angie summarised the NHS Long term plan for students and allied health professionals (AHPs).

Together they delivered a training workshop to unregistered support workers on the value of support workers to students on placement. 

Incredible opportunity

Angie said: ‘This was an incredible opportunity and we were able to get the message across that students need them, they are valued and an essential part of the AHP workforce and to students on placement who can learn so much from their experience and skills whilst developing their own.’

Grace and Angie also interviewed physiotherapists in leadership roles and wrote a piece to capture their journey and empower others to think about leadership in their careers.

You can read the full interview in the Leadership newsletter from students.

How she did it

Angie describes her experience: ‘An opportunity came up to do a diverse placement with a leadership focus and I decided I would like to do it.

‘I felt that this would be interesting and useful to me later in my career and I hoped I would get an insight into the importance of leadership within a health care setting. 

‘I was initially concerned that a non-clinical placement might set me back in terms of developing core skills, however the skills I have learnt transfer to a variety of settings. I have developed skills in self-understanding and the impact of self on others and on the values that are essential to becoming an effective leader.

‘At the start of the placement, I had little understanding on the impact leaders have on the workforce and organisations but as the time went on, I found that leadership in a health care setting is crucial and that there are strong correlations between effective leadership on the workforce and patient outcomes. 

‘What surprised me was that I came to learn that leadership does not mean you have to be in a high-up role, anyone can be a leader and positively influence and engage others.’

Angie’s video on why students should have an understanding of the NHS Long term plan

Further resources



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