North-east student wants to give back to healthcare industry

Becky Tait from Fraserburgh.

A dedicated Fraserburgh student who was “destined” for a career in pharmacy has spoken of her desire to give back to the healthcare industry, following her graduation from Robert Gordon University (RGU) yesterday.

Becky Tait, 21, graduated with distinction alongside her classmates with a Masters in Pharmacy at a ceremony at Aberdeen’s His Majesty’s Theatre.

The former Fraserburgh Academy pupil was inspired to study the course following a discussion with her guidance teacher that awoke an interest in exploring a world with which she was already connected, through a lifetime of dealing with diabetes.

Miss Tait said she felt “chuffed” yesterday following the ceremony and added: “I had been a regular visitor to pharmacies when I was younger, but did not know what they really entailed. My guidance teacher organised some work experience for me and it made me curious to learn more in the future.

“I’d always been known as the ‘clever one’ in the family, so it was an easy choice to put my academic skills to use at university and pursue a career in pharmacy. I was also keen to give back to the healthcare system that had done so much for me, after living with diabetes from a young age.”

Miss Tait was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of six and believes that her experiences over the years made her extra-prepared for her future career.

Not only did she learn to be independent and accurate while controlling her condition, but she can now appreciate the human side of healthcare.

She said: “I know that living with such a condition can be challenging at times and it’s not possible for to be ‘with it’ 100% of the time.

“With my history, I am able to empathise with patients who may not comply with their medicines exactly and show an understanding that some other pharmacists won’t be able to.”

Throughout Miss Tait’s time at RGU, she experienced the balance of theory and practice that is a staple of the School of Pharmacy and Life Sciences, including experiencing a simulated pharmacy environment from early in the degree.

In addition to her placements as part of her degree, she made a point of working part-time in a pharmacy throughout her university career – starting the summer before joining RGU. This experience proved invaluable not only to her education, but she has now secured further employment at the same branch.

Miss Tait said: “I am very grateful to Baird’s Pharmacy, on Aberdeen’s King Street, for the skills and experience I gained working there over the past four years. I am now set to start my pre-registration pharmacist training there and cannot wait to continue my development.

“I am honestly shocked at how fast my time at university has gone, but it was absolutely worth it. From the social side – bellowing our ‘pharmacy chant’ down Union Street – to sitting in first year Chemistry lecturers, I had so many wonderful experiences that I won’t forget.

“I am also delighted to have made my family and friends so proud, being the first in my family to have attended and graduated university. My family were crying with joy when I passed my exams and I could not have done it without them.”

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