Graduate Glen swaps Falklands for Qatar to set-up addictions treatment centre

A father-of-two has topped up his Nursing degree with BPP University School of Health and is using it to help patients in Qatar overcome drug and alcohol addictions.

Glen Sturdee, 46, returned to the classroom to enhance his work as a Community Psychiatric Nurse (CPN) in the Falkland Islands.

Working in a two-man team with mentor Karen Rimicans, Glen and his colleague conducted health assessments for the Ministry of Defence at the Mt Pleasant RAF Base in the Falklands.

They also helped conduct prison assessments with the Royal Falkland Islands Police.

But despite having over 25 years’ experience of working in the mental health service dealing with patients suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, schizophrenia and substance-related problems, Glen knew further qualifications would help the demands of his job and looked to his line manager Karen for help.

Australian-born Glen said: “Karen is one of those rare inspirational mentors I wish I could be more like and I knew speaking to her about further education would be beneficial.

“She worked tirelessly to help patients in the Falklands and I looked up to her.

“I learned a lot on the job but also realised I needed to update my knowledge base and seek a qualification that would assist my credibility in a demanding profession.”

Glen was attracted to a BPP University School of Health advertisement because – despite it being 8,000 miles away – it offered him the opportunity to top up his nursing degree online.

“Having a young family and the possibility of being called out to a crisis at any time in my job, whilst undertaking study probably wasn’t the wisest thing, I must admit,” joked Glen, who has worked in Saudi Arabia, Germany, Iraq and Kuwait.

“I hadn’t studied in years too so I needed to re-approach learning and get into the academic mind-set.”

The former service manager and United Nations counsellor worked hard to juggle his duties and graduated with a BSc (Hons) Nursing degree in November 2014.

“The BPP University School of Health staff really helped me. I was never left alone to fail. My tutors made sure of that,” Glen said.

“They would help me with bite-sized study deadlines, direct me to useful online learning tools and would call me to make sure I was on the right path.

“I would not have graduated without incredible dedication of the academic team. I also needed my family to help me through and my wife, Analiza, did just that. She was an absolute rock.

“Online learning is not easy but it has improved my career prospects so much and, as a family, we are now able to see even more of the world because of my extra skills.”

Graduate Glen’s latest qualification has led him and his family thousands of miles across the South Atlantic Ocean to Qatar where he is helping to set-up an addiction treatment hospital and working as a Psychiatric Nurse Specialist.

“The Falklands was attractive because it was a safe and family-oriented community but after three years it was time for a new challenge,” said Glen.

“I already know that this new role in Qatar is the job for me. My family and I love living here.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

BPP University (www.bppuniversity.ac.uk) is one of the UK’s leading Universities dedicated to business and the professions. BPP University is a UK degree awarding body providing its own awards through four schools: BPP University Law School, BPP University Business School, BPP University School of Health and BPP University School of Foundation and English Language Studies. BPP University also offers some programmes of study leading to the awards of other bodies. BPP University has centres throughout the UK. It was awarded the Education Investor award for Post-16 Education Provider of the Year in 2010 and the Education Investor’s award for Higher or Professional Education Provider of the Year in 2013.

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