Lisa Weaver joined the prison service as an administrative assistant. After 3 years she successfully applied to become a prison officer, a role that she has performed for the last 14 years.
In the autumn one of her colleagues mentioned that there was a global email circulating regarding POA Learning promoting their new WULF Project and the learning opportunities it was able to provide.
Lisa says that she was interested in a number of the courses that were offered and had often thought that she would like to return to learning but had not made that step, so she decided that she would enquire about enrolling onto a course and opted to study for the Awareness of Mental Health Problems qualification.
Lisa says that although there were a number of courses that interested her she realised that over the 14 years of her service as a prison officer there had been a marked change in the number of prisoners that she had dealt with who had issues with their mental health. For this reason she felt that the course would be interesting and also very useful in gaining a better understanding. She admits that she was a little apprehensive as it was years since she had last studied towards a qualification and wondered how she would find the experience and cope with the demands on her time etc.
The distance learning course suited her and she found that she was able to manage her time for study effectively and that apart from a period where she had some annual leave it was a fairly smooth progression.
Lisa said that she felt the course was very good and provided lots of valuable information and an introduction to a wide range of mental health issues. Her only disappointment was that she would have liked to look a little deeper into some of the topics. As for the course work itself, well it could be a little repetitive as the same questions tended to be asked regarding each topic however overall it was a good course and a great way to take up learning once again after such a long time.
Lisa said she would recommend colleagues and friends to consider the courses as she found it informative and hopefully will be able to apply her new knowledge in her workplace role and she has set her sights on another distance learning course which she hopes to start in the near future.