Last month, a thousand new faces started their new clinical professions across multiple Monash Health sites. Raymond Rolley is one of them, commencing the Nursing Graduate program at the start of the year.
Having been a Registered Undergraduate Student of Nursing (RUSON) at the Dandenong Hospital Emergency Department (ED), Raymond was excited to return to the same team.
“When I got my offer, they asked if we would like to work where we already work and I said, ‘yes!’
“I would have never seen myself being in ED. If you had asked me this 3 years ago, I would say, ‘no way!’ But now I wake up every morning and I’m excited to come to work because I am learning so much every day.”
Before his nursing career Raymond worked as a performer with a travelling children’s theatre.
“The thing that attracted me to acting was making people laugh and entertaining people. Nursing is not entertaining people, but it’s giving someone a reason to smile and to feel better.
“I always wanted to be a nurse. But it took me a while to find the confidence to start the degree and start nursing.
“When I was younger, I didn’t think I was smart enough. I thought there was a lot of science and maths.”
Raymond started his nursing degree at 25 years old, thanks to the support from his husband.
“While I was travelling and acting I met my husband, who lives in Melbourne. He encouraged me to study nursing.
“I wanted a job that wasn’t business [orientated] and more people-focused. I really like helping people.”
Like Raymond, more than 30% of the graduates commencing at the start of this year are previous Monash Health employees, including former RUSONs and Registered Undergraduate Students of Midwifery (RUSOM).
“I did my first placement on the oncology ward, and there was an educator there named J.C. who was really inspirational. I had such a good experience, so I looked up RUSONs at Monash Health.
“I started my graduate year early because I had worked in the ED as a RUSON previously.
“I recommend the RUSON job 110%.”
Raymond conquered nerves about being a new starter later in life thanks to the supportive and diverse colleagues he met during his studies and work.
“It was a little bit daunting being surrounded by really young people while studying. But when I joined the workforce as a RUSON, I realised that there are people who started nursing later than me and younger than me. It’s a mix of everyone. So I didn’t feel as nervous about being a bit older.
“My life’s a bit more in order than it was when I was younger. I bought a house and have done the life things that can sometimes stress you out when you’re trying to focus on your graduate program.
“I could focus on my studies and focus on applying myself.”
Raymond will rotate through different clinical areas as part of his graduate program. However he sings high praises for the ED team at Dandenong Hospital.
“If you’re lucky enough to get placed at Dandeonong ED, it’s life changing. It made my love of nursing go from 10 to 100. It affirmed that I was in the right place. And it’s ok to be a little bit scared sometimes, it’s ok to be a little bit unsure. But if you’ve got the right people around you can do absolutely anything.
“You get to care for some pretty unwell people and see them get better. The level of knowledge is really inspiring.
“I was scared. I thought ‘I’m never going to be cut out to be in emergency. It’s such a critical and a stressful place.’ But since being in Dandenong ED, I have been supported, plus, plus, plus! Every question I have, there’s always someone to ask; there’s always someone there to listen. It’s a beautiful team environment in this department.”
To Raymond, our commencing graduates and interns, welcome to Monash Health! We are delighted to have you join us and take your first steps in your professional clinical careers, we’re here to help and smooth the transition path as much as possible.