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Jane Samson


As a teenager…

I grew up in ‘sticks ville’ AKA the Lake District. Social activities were bike rides and building dens. There were 3 other kids in my final year at junior school. We were lucky because a young local couple set up a youth club in the village hall one night a week. Everyone came, we played darts, pool and brought singles to play on the ancient record player. Moving to secondary school wasn’t great. I was different coming from the countryside, so tried to stay as invisible as possible, I volunteered as a librarian. At home I started to make my own clothes and as I moved up the school made different friends, went to the ‘Colton’ discos in the church hall on a Friday. I started working in a pub at weekends doing washing up and cleaning rooms, it really was great to have cash! No transport over the fell, so bike it was!

After school…

I tried sixth form but failed and knew this simply wasn’t for me. I did know I liked people and that I was a ‘on hands’ person. I applied for Nursing and moved to North Manchester. Working shifts, and studying for 3 years with people from so many different places in the NW. It was alot of fun in dodgy N Manchester curry, clubs, concerts and van trips.

I had a couple of jobs as qualified nurse working in Neurosurgery (Brain and spines) and Trauma Orthopaedics (Bones and gun shoot/machete wounds). Then travelled/ worked in Europe for 9 months. I moved to London and started working as an agency nurse, this didn’t work with the boyfriend I had as he was 9-5 so I got a job working in East London at Diabetes centre. Within 5 years I was running the largest Diabetes Nurse service in Newham. Then life on a roller-skate with boy friend who turned into a husband, commuting to Amsterdam, moving to NYC, then Abu Dhabi, Atlanta Georgia back to Abu Dhabi and then Lancaster. Away 17 years.

Now I’m…

I changed careers whilst in the Middle East, had my own business, had two children who are now 16 and 17. I work 3 days week for UCLan as a lecturer. I designed and lead a Post Grad Medical Leadership program for anyone in the business of medicine who wants be more effective them selves and with the people they work with, its great stuff. I also work as a pastoral tutor for the under grad students. Love the UK, wild swimming, food and  people.

5 bits of advice to my teenage self…

  • Be positive
  • You don’t get if you don’t ask
  • Hold tight to yourself, and be brave
  • Always ask for help if you’re feeling stuck. Some people love to help some are just not ready to. Keep asking different people.
  • You never know what’s round the corner in life

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