We caught up with the team leading the ambitious project infrastructure project, due to launch later this year.
Date: 5 September 2023
Progress is well underway with the new state of the art teaching facilities for the School of Human Sciences, located at Holloway Road campus.
In a few short months, the former library space on the top floor has been renovated into a thoughtful and practical training location, in preparation for the incoming intake of student nurses, including interprofessional working with student Allied Health Professionals (AHPs).
Dietitians, physiotherapists and sports therapists have access to use the space independently to nursing, as well as in an interprofessional capacity. The space is available for all pre-registration health care courses.
The facilities are on track to be ready in time to welcome students when term starts on 18 September. The space will be light and airy. Rooms have been constructed to mimic hospital and community clinical environments in some parts of the building, to create authentic clinical teaching and simulation environments.
The new spaces will not only provide world class facilities for the University’s first Adult Nursing (BSc) students, but also for existing allied health students studying physiotherapy and dietetics courses.
The project is part of a £180 million plan to create vibrant campuses with cutting-edge facilities.
The course has been designed to address the UK’s increasing need for high-skilled, qualified nurses from diverse socio-economic backgrounds. London in particular is in need of community integration – many nurses train in London, but are unable to stay local due to accommodation costs. This has been taken into consideration, as local students with roots in London make up a large part of the intake. Many are mature students who bring life, work and family experience to the course, which will create an enriching learning environment for all.
Ambitious project delivered to the highest standards
Taking the project from concept to near completion has been an extraordinary feat, achieved in only a few months, with construction work commencing in June 2023 and nearing completion at the time of writing in late August.
Up to 105 builders and sub-contractors have been onsite at any one time. Many weekends and late shifts have gone into meeting the ambitious project timelines, which aimed to finalise the space before the new academic year commences. A significant focus has been on ensuring the space meets rigorous safety and compliance standards, which will also allow London Met to meet the clinical learning requirements set by the Nursing and Midwifery Council.
Lisa Ryan, Senior Project Manager at London Met, explained: “When I arrived, there were bookshelves stacked to the ceiling as part of the previous library set up. The ceilings and infrastructure work carried out has taken some time due to the intricate nature of the work. The goal has been to get all the teaching areas ready in time for the course launch, and I’m proud to say this is looking very likely. Wednesdays have been blocked out as non-teaching days to finalise the fine details.”
Details have been carefully considered, down to the paint colour palette, which has been chosen for its vibrancy and to blend into the surrounding built environment Every detail, including the vibrant paint colour palette chosen to complement the surrounding architecture and mirror the NHS working environment, has been thoughtfully considered.. The aesthetics reflect the NHS working environment that many of the healthcare students will be exposed to during their time on work placement.
“I’ve got goosebumps! Look how far we’ve come in such a short time.” commented Dr Julie MacLaren, Head of Nursing at London Met, as the tour stretched across the full span of the building. Her excitement came from being able to visualise how the space would be used for the teaching and practice of the new nursing course.
Notable features include clinical consultation rooms, a six-bedded general ward, a paediatric ward, and two home care facilities designed to replicate care in community settings. There is also an Intensive Care Unit (ICU), changing areas, an immersive learning virtual reality room, which are all connected by a central corridor. The state of the art facilities, which include digital signage common across all London Met campuses, will serve to create a positive and productive learning environment for nursing students.
The School of Human Sciences will greatly benefit from this addition. More information on the nursing course is available on the University website.
Photo caption: Main corridor of School of Human Sciences learning facilities, under construction.