Dean Hardy graduated from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) this week with a first-class honours Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) degree.
He’ll now spend the next two year rotating in roles at East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust (ELHT) as a junior doctor, where he also completed his placement training.
The 29-year-old, who lives in Padiham with partner Leanne, has spent the last eight years working towards his goal after first completing a degree in biomedical science in Manchester.
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Although he’d always dreamt of going to medical school, Dean didn’t think it was possible for someone from his background to achieve it.
He said: “I come from a working-class family and when I was younger, I didn’t think becoming a doctor was possible for someone like me. My sister, who passed away two weeks before my A-Level exams, always said I could do it though and believed in me.
“UCLan has given me the chance to chase that dream and I know seeing me graduate is a very proud moment for my family.”
Dean managed to hold down three jobs alongside his studies, working as a health care assistant and phlebotomist at Royal Blackburn and Burnley General Teaching Hospitals, as an outreach officer for UCLan and as private tutor teaching A-Level maths, biology and Spanish.
“I’ve certainly taken my organisation skills to another level” Dean said. “Thankfully, the staff on the course were the most supportive I have ever come across. They offered support from day one to the end and beyond.
“The placements I’ve taken over the last five years have prepared me well. As time went on, I was given more independence which really helped me develop into the doctor I am today. The thought of now being a doctor in emergencies, on wards and in surgical theatres is a thrilling prospect.
“I want to say a massive thank you to all of the medical and non-medical staff at UCLan and ELHT for providing the best, but most challenging, experience I have ever had.”