Graduated in 2014, I did my last two years of studies in apprenticeship with CHIMM hospital (Centre Hospitalier Intercommunal de Meulan les Mureaux). The CFA requires a certain rigor both in schooling and professional involvement. This was a real plus for my career. It allows, on one hand, to entrench academic assessment by working with patients, under the watchful eye of an experienced tutor. On the other hand, it’s a first approach of the work in a multidisciplinary team and thus an opportunity to refine our objectives according to each patient and their pathology.
Post-CFA period is also critical, but you enter into the working world in a familiar environment, that knows you back. You are therefore fully operational from day one, and yesterday’s caring tutors become today’s colleagues. Having changed of facility afterwards, I can testify that this is a considerable source of worry and stress you don’t have to deal with on the first days of your career.
To summarize, CFA turns knowledge into know-how, which makes entry into professional life smoother, increases maturity, improves patient care and teaches what course can’t do: the contact with patients combined with human dimension in a pathological context.
If I were to start a new training, even in a different field than medicine, I would go again without a single hesitation with apprenticeship, as it’s a real tool for professionalization.
Apprenticeship in physiotherapy … at first, we all see the financial interest as we need to find a way to pay for our schooling, but in reality it is so much more than this!
I did my 2 years of apprenticeship (K2 and K3) at the Clinique des Sources in Montmorency, versatile and geriatric SSR. First days were tricky as I had just finished my first year, but the whole rehab team has been very welcoming and benevolent, so that I quickly felt I’m part of it. Gradually, physiotherapists started to consider me as one of them and no longer as a trainee, and let me in charge of some patients, by determining their orientation and rehabilitation. I therefore faced what our job is really about and I had to start attending staff meetings where I had to give my opinion in front of doctors, nurses, caregivers … At this point, you’re no longer a student or trainee. You become a real professional with all responsibilities this entails. But there is no better way to learn what your future job will be, by practicing it when you’re still a student!
Finally, it’s not always easy to deal with training in institute and work during school holidays, but I have evolved so much professionally and humanly that it is truly worth sacrificing some rest periods. You really feel you’ve grown with this experience, and better prepared to face professional world once graduated.