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Diabetes Victoria Blog

Join the discussion in our blog where a variety of writers from all walks of life take a stance on current diabetes issues.

Meet Sven Pohlsen | Gwen Scott Grant Sucess Story

Sven Pohlsen“I’m pretty excited to see where it takes me!”
Meet Sven Pohlsen, who was successful in the 2021 Gwen Scott grant program and received funding towards studying a Master of Advanced Nursing at Deakin University. Sven currently works as a credentialled diabetes educator at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne and is keen to further his professional development in the field of diabetes.
Why did you apply for the Gwen Scott grant?
“I’ve known about the grant for some time, through friends and colleagues who have been applicants and successful candidates in the past. Each of them talked about how they were able to study and learn because of the support that the Gwen Scott grant gave them. I decided that I wanted to toss my hat into the ring and push myself to study again, especially while we were in lockdown.”
How has the Gwen Scott grant program benefited you?
“Really, it’s been lovely to know that Diabetes Victoria is backing me in securing my education to reach a higher degree and helping me achieve my goals as a clinician. The grant has helped me pay for part of my masters course, taking away a little bit of the financial burden that comes with going back to university. So far, I have six of the twelve credit points needed to complete the course, with those subjects already finalised, I’ve been able to incorporate that knowledge into my clinical practice.”  
Tell us about your Master of Advanced Nursing and what you intend to do with that when you’re finished.
“My dream is to use this degree to apply for endorsement as a nurse practitioner, and one day open my own private practice as a diabetes educator. An area that really interests me is transition to/young adults clinics, because there is so much potential in this group to instil some vital self-management skills. Having this degree is also a door to so many opportunities in nursing, and I’m pretty excited to see where it takes me!”
Why is it important for health professionals to further their education in diabetes?
“Diabetes care is evolving so fast, and I’m sure that everyone that works in the field would agree with me that the rate of change, not only with technology, but also with medication is difficult to fathom. From firsthand experience, living with type one diabetes for the past 19 years, the past decade had really been a golden era of advancement. Health professionals need to be on the ball with what’s currently, and soon to be, on the market; we owe it, not ourselves, to our clients to be able to direct them towards the best possible care outcomes, so the way I see it is we have an obligation to continually maintain our professional development.”  
Would you recommend other health professionals apply for the Gwen Scott grant program?
“Yes! The grant gives you the opportunity to develop yourself as a clinician. Expand your knowledge; build upon your pedagogy, learn a new skill, become the practitioner that your clients need to succeed. Ultimately, the Gwen Scott grant gives you the opportunity to grow, helping you reach your potential.”