Have you thought of sharing this special time with a student midwife?
Do you know?
Our first year midwifery students ‘follow through’ a woman and her family in a supportive role during pregnancy, childbirth and the early weeks at home with the baby. Our second year students ‘follow through’ a woman, focusing on the midwifery aspects, learning the skills of midwifery in a ‘hands on’ way, closely supervised by the midwife involved in your care. We have students based in Dunedin, Oamaru, Central Otago, Southland, Wellington, Hutt Valley, Kapiti Coast, Whanganui, Palmerston North and the Wairarapa.
What’s in it for you?
- The first year students are keen to learn how pregnancy is experienced by you and your whanau. They are available to help with support and companionship during your pregnancy and childbirth experience.
- The second year students develop their midwifery skills further. They work alongside the midwife, the women and her whanau. Midwifery students can be someone to talk to about the joys and challenges of this special time.
“I agreed to have a student midwife work alongside my midwife when I was pregnant with my second child. As a teacher I was willing to help someone learn, but I got so much out of it myself. It was a really nice experience, having a second person caring for me, especially during the birth. My student midwife was involved from 12 weeks on. She did a really good job of communicating information to me. She also asked a lot of questions of my midwife, so I learned more myself, things I wouldn’t have thought to ask but which gave me more understanding. I would definitely recommend having a student midwife.”
Kate Mullan (follow through woman and 2nd time mum 2017).
How can you help?
By sharing your pregnancy and birth experience with a midwifery student. By talking with the lecturer about the student’s performance. You will be helping to educate the midwives for the future.
“Following a woman through her pregnancy is so helpful. I didn’t know what to expect but can’t imagine doing my first year without it. There is so much to learn, going to appointments with her if she wants you to, and practising practical skills. I’ve been lucky to be following five women. They are all different: the student involvement depends on the relationships between the woman and her midwife and between the midwife and the student as well as between the woman and the student. It is such an incredible honour if they want you to be at the birth.”
Rosie Naylor (Year 1, Midwifery Student 2017).
“In my second year of study I had seven follow through women. At the start of the year each student spends two weeks with one midwife, following her practice and meeting all the women she has appointments with. First year follow throughs are mainly about observation and providing support. In second year it’s more about developing your own midwifery practice and it’s much more hands on. We are extending our skills – not just practical skills but also how to share information, manage a caseload and how to develop relationships with a variety of women, with different backgrounds, experiences and personalities. We have a very short amount of time to build rapport, respect and trust, and it is a special time in the women’s lives. It’s like a friendship but with professional boundaries and for a defined period. It’s a privilege and a valuable learning experience for us, but it’s equally beneficial for the women.”
Tracy Finnie (Year 2, Midwifery Student 2017).
Supervision of midwifery students
A lecturer at the School of Midwifery supervises each student and is available to discuss any questions or issues you may have about the programme or your student. You are in charge and can decide what you want to share with the student.
To find out more about having a midwifery student involved in your childbirth experience and to obtain a hard copy or PDF consent form, please contact the School of Midwifery: