College of Life Sciences

Professor Jayne Marshall

Head shot of Jayne MarshallFoundation Professor of Midwifery / Nursing and Midwifery Council, Lead Midwife for Education

Did you experience any significant barriers / challenges in getting to where you are now? And if so, how did you overcome these?

Not particularly, I had always wanted to be a nurse from a young age, but I was enthused by midwifery during nurse training at Guy’s Hospital and so went on to train as a midwife shortly after completing my nursing course. I believe that when your plans do not always work out as anticipated it is for a reason. There is often something around the corner that may be even better that you might otherwise not have considered!

What are your future career aspirations?

My aspiration is for the University of Leicester to be recognised as THE place to come and study midwifery and to prepare the future leaders of the profession. As our new 4-year undergraduate MSci Midwifery with Leadership programme gathers momentum, I anticipate developing midwifery research capacity as well as nurturing the future leaders of the midwifery faculty to eventually continue the work that I have spearheaded.

What leadership experiences / opportunities have you had thus far (either in your personal or professional life)?

I have been fortunate to have had a number of opportunities to develop my leadership knowledge and skills which have proved beneficial to progress my career in leading midwifery education. These include the University of Nottingham’s Academics’ and Administrators’ Professional, Personal and Leadership Experience (APPLE) Women’s Development Programme, the Institute of Leadership and Management (Level 3) First Line Management Award and the (Level 5) Leadership and Management Award, the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement’s Module Implementation Training Programme and more recently, the University of Leicester’s Future Leaders Programme. I have been co-lead for Kingston and St George’s Health Care Department’s Athena SWAN Bronze Award and am also a role model and mentor for the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education (Advance HE) Aurora Women’s Leadership Programme.

What is one thing the university could do to help women progress professionally?

Develop a more structured mentoring system, particularly with new employees across both academic and professional services. Networking with others outside of your own field can in some instances, open doors that you never knew existed and provide the opportunity to further develop your professional profile.

What advice would you give to other women in the workplace?

Do not be afraid to speak up where appropriate and have courageous conversations with your colleagues. A good place to work is one that recognises the importance of establishing good, trusting relationships with others and treating everyone with the same respect as you would wish for yourself and your family and friends. We are all (women and men) responsible for creating a good working environment. 

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