Monday, 10 April 2017
A student midwife from the University of Worcester has been elected as a representative for England on an influential national forum.
Louise Webster, 34, from Wolverhampton, was elected to the Student Midwifery Forum (SMF) of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) following a national vote.
“At the RCM Student Conference last year it was announced that there would be elections for the Student Midwifery Forum, and a number of my friends said I should go for it,” Louise said. “When I looked at the list of current members, there were a lot from the north and the south of the country, but nobody representing the Midlands,” she added.
“It was a proper election. I had to submit a manifesto, and it was really nerve-racking waiting for the results. I’m not going to lie, when it was confirmed that I had been elected, I cried. I was so proud to have been trusted with this opportunity by my fellow student midwives.”
Louise, who has recently followed up her initial success with a further election to the position of Vice Chair of the Student Midwifery Forum, has a very clear vision of the value of her role with the SMF, and the future direction of midwifery.
“A lot of students I know want to take childbirth back to basics, away from an overly medicalised model with white-washed walls everywhere,” Louise said. “I am entering this profession to care for women, to act as an advocate for women, to stand up for and next to women, shoulder to shoulder, to make a change, both for women and for the midwives that serve them,” she added. “Whether that be a small change, or working together with others to bring about more fundamental developments, I want to give it my all.”
Toni Martin, Lead Midwife for Education at the University of Worcester, added: “There are only 10 student midwives on the SMF, so it’s great for the University of Worcester - and for the wider region - to have Louise representing the interests of the next generation of midwives at a national level.
“At Worcester we want to train midwives who can offer high quality compassionate care, but who are also autonomous professionals who can think critically and work to shape the services of the future. As a Student Midwifery Forum member, Louise now has a great opportunity to be a part of that conversation and represent both the views of her peers and the needs of women.”