Sarah Bradder named Student Therapeutic Radiographer of the Year

L-R Gill Hodges, President, The Society and College of Radiographers; Sarah Bradder, Student Therapeutic Radiographer of the Year; Jodie Bridge, Business Leader, Philips Healthcare; Sir David Behan, Chair, Health Education England

A radiography student from Sheffield Hallam University has been named Student Therapeutic Radiographer of the Year by the Society and College of Radiographers. 

Sarah Bradder was presented with her award on 6 November at a ceremony held at the Dorchester Library Room, The Royal College of Physicians.

On winning the award, Sarah said: “It’s so overwhelming to know that there are so many people rooting for you and who are proud of you. I’m over the moon about winning, and I just hope I can continue to have an impact in some way.”

A major influence on Sarah’s decision to undertake a course in BSc Radiotherapy and Oncology came from within her own family. “My mum was a nurse, so there was always lots of medical and hospital talk around the house when I was growing up. From an early age I knew that my career would be in healthcare. Anatomy and biology were two of my favourite subjects in school. In particular, learning about cancer fascinated me. My nan was also a volunteer at the local hospital’s tea bar, so I spent many childhood days helping her. Chatting to patients and their families was something I absolutely loved, and this patient contact played a huge part in attracting me to therapeutic radiography. Putting a smile on someone’s face when they’re going through such a tough time is what makes the job so rewarding.”

Sarah’s award is recognition of the numerous projects she has supported over the past year.

“I’ve always been open to opportunities to learn and grow, so I’ve thrown myself into lots of little projects around recruitment, encouraging people to interact on social media, improving patient care through speaking at conferences, coordinating Twitter chats and using my dissertation as the perfect opportunity to try and influence practice. I’m passionate about my profession, and I’d like to think that it shows in everything I do.”

As well as being nominated previously for Student Therapeutic Radiographer of the Year in 2018, Sarah has also been a finalist for Student AHP of the Year 2019 at the Chief Allied Health Professions Officer Awards. In 2018, she was a shortlisted finalist for two categories at the Council of Deans of Health Student Leadership Programme Awards: Best Contribution to Social Media and Top #150Leaders Allied Health Professional.

Sarah is currently undertaking her first role as a qualified therapeutic radiographer at Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham.

“I’m very much focusing on solidifying my knowledge and gaining confidence in my role. But I have a really hard time saying ‘no’ to opportunities that come along, so I guess anything can happen! I’m already chatting with last year’s winner to see if there’s work we can collaborate on, and I’ll always be an advocate in any capacity I can for the profession.”

Jo McNamara, senior lecturer in radiotherapy and oncology, said: “Sarah is selfless in her desire to develop her skills and knowledge in order to improve the patient experience. She is kind, caring, compassionate and dedicated.  She challenges the service she delivers and is instrumental in driving change and improvements. It has been a real pleasure to have Sarah study with us, as she can be relied upon to work autonomously but thrives in a team, motivating and encouraging others. She is destined for a fantastic career and I have no doubt she will excel. A true role model for the profession and AHPs!”

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