Grow our own nurses
25 February 2019

Grow our own nurses -Dionne’s story

Dionne Glen, a Senior Support Worker at Moorpark Place has been studying through the Huntercombe Academy and the Grow Our Own Nurses programme. Dionne’s story shows how helpful it is for both employee and employer to have a supportive and flexible approach to studying whilst working.

“I started out applying for the Grow Our Own Nurses programme at Huntercombe and was delighted to be accepted and to embark upon my studies. I really enjoyed the first year, and at the end of it, gained two distinctions, which I am hugely proud of. I absolutely loved the whole process, however, as there are no nurses at Moorpark Place, I realised I would need to follow a slightly different professional route in order to continue my studies and to continue working at Moorpark, which I love.

I sat down and discussed this with Marlene Boyd (Huntercombe People Director) and we tried to figure out how I could progress. We decided that I should start a Health and Social Care degree, which meant using the knowledge I had gained in my first year and progressing down a slightly different route.

The degree is just the most challenging thing I have ever done. I’ve studied before, but it’s a real trick to balance work with study – and to self-motivate. That said, I’m really pleased about how flexible it is and I am so happy that I did this, it’s such a worthwhile process. I did not expect to gain another distinction again this year – but I have, I’m so shocked but extremely happy.

I’m really passionate about health and social care, and I’ve been able to apply what I’ve learned through my course to my every day job tenfold, which is so satisfying. Before my studies, I always knew there were reasons for policies, guidelines etc. but now I have a sound knowledge of the legislation and psychological theories/approaches behind them. This in turn allows me to offer a more holistic, person-centred approach to our residents and ensures the best possible care and support is given.

I am so grateful to Huntercombe for supporting me with my studies. How many people get an opportunity like this in their career? It has opened up a whole new dimension for me and has opened my eyes to so much more. My end goal now is to go into management or specialise in Autism/Learning Disabilities services within Huntercombe and I really want to go on to make Huntercombe proud of me.”

Marlene Boyd, Huntercombe’s People Director says: “We are so pleased and impressed with the amazing way Dionne has embraced our “Grow Our Own Nurses” programme and found a way to continue to work towards her degree whilst still staying within the service she loves. Dionne’s story is the perfect example of why we set up the Huntercombe Academy and our Grow Our Own Nurses programme. We want to ensure that every single Huntercombe employee has the opportunity to grow and develop. Not only does this enable us to attract and retain the very best people but it also ensures that new ideas for continually developing and improving our services are brought to us by the people who work directly with patients on a daily basis”.

If you’d like to know more about the Huntercombe Academy, our Grow Our Own Nurses programme, or a possible role with Huntercombe please do get in touch via