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NEBOSH Diploma Best Student for Unit B Award 2018

Astutis learner Debbie Mitchell wins NEBOSH award for best student for unit B 2018Debbie is Health, Safety and Environmental Manager at Bournemouth Airport. As HSE Manager, she’s responsible for the development and implementation of the occupational health and safety management system at Bournemouth Airport.

Her role includes auditing, incident investigation, advice, reporting, training and running campaigns. She’s also responsible for the development and implementation of their environment management system and community engagement in line with Bournemouth Airport's corporate social responsibility strategy.

Choosing the NEBOSH International Diploma

Debbie was interested in progressing her career and professional development. She particularly wanted to develop her understanding of areas of health and safety that didn’t necessarily form part of her direct role at the airport.

Debbie already knew of some colleagues who had taken the NEBOSH Diploma so she discussed the qualification with her employer. They were fully onboard with her decision to take the qualification and offered their support and financial assistance.

Debbie chose to study online because of it's flexibility. Although she anticipated that there would be a lot of work involved, studying online meant she was able to fit the course around work and family commitments.

Studying for the NEBOSH International Diploma

As Debbie got more into the course and got to grips with the topics, she was surprised how many of the hazard were relevent to her role.

Debbie had a loose plan for studying, although due to her personal circumstances, this required a lot of flexibility. She chose to work at lunchtimes when she had time to fit it in, and most evenings and weekends. Another role Debbie takes on is that of a mother, so a lot of her work was done after her 6 year old’s bedtime.

"Motivation is a key factor for online learning"

Preparing for the NEBOSH International Diploma Exams

I am the type of person that requires a looming deadline to really focus on revision, so I would say that I didn’t start revising early, but became extremely focused on the lead up to exams.

Debbie became extremely focused in the lead up to her exams using past papers and questions within the online learning modules to aid her revision. This helped her to understand how to answer questions in the 'NEBOSH way'

"I think it is important not to rely solely on learning stock answers though, as I feel it is more important to have an understanding of the topics and practical applications in a number of different circumstances."

Debbie found the additional resources, such as HSE case studies and YouTube videos, helpful for practical application of theoretical learning. These made the topics come to life and she could then understand the reading material in a practical context. 

Debbie's advice for future NEBOSH International Diploma learners

"The main piece of advice I would give is that there is a lot of work involved, and there are no short cuts. Make sure you know the subject inside out, and understand the practical application. I did find past exam questions useful.

I would say, however, that as long as you manage your time effectively, and make study time focused, it doesn’t have to consume everything else in your life (well, except on the lead up to exams!), and it is definitely worth it in the end. Most of all there are no short cuts, so just take the time learning and understanding the course material."

Life after the NEBOSH International Diploma

Since completing her qualification, Debbie has already noticed her confidence in the subject has improved. She now has a much greater understanding of the health and safety culture within her organisation and ways to improve it. She's now planning to take a well-earned rest from education.

"I am happy in my current position within my workplace, but am always open to new opportunities and challenges!"

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"It has really helped me to focus and to bring the material to life."

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