Our sponsored nursing associate programme gives members of our local communities the opportunity to begin a nursing career at the Trust.

We operate this programme in partnership with Buckinghamshire New University, University of East London and The Open University.

The nursing associate role is a support role that bridges the gap between healthcare support workers and registered nurses, helping with the delivery of care under the supervision of a registered nurse.

Successful applicants to the programme will undertake a two year UCAS entry nursing associate programme and benefit from:

  • the opportunity to undertake their nursing associate placements at one of our hospitals, with dedicated support from our nursing education team
  • fully-funded second year tuition fees
  • a guaranteed offer of a registered nursing associate post at one of our hospitals when they complete the programme
  • the opportunity to work on our bank as a healthcare support worker during the programme.

Up to 40 applicants will be recruited to the nursing associate programme twice a year for the next four years. There are two intakes a year for the programme: an autumn intake and a spring intake. We are currently recruiting for intakes in October 2022 at The Open University and University of East London. Please go to the individual university websites below or UCAS for further details.

To be eligible to apply for the programme you must live within a reasonable commuting distance from our hospitals.

Learn more about participating universities

Each of our partner universities offer excellent teaching and educational opportunities, and are accessible to our communities. Explore their offer to find a programme that suits your needs. Please include that you are applying for the Imperial College Healthcare sponsored nursing associate programme in your supporting statement within your application.

University of East London


We are a thriving and expanding university in the heart of East London, with easy access to London’s major hospitals and clinics. We are proud that our teaching team is one of the best in providing nursing associate education, from multiple clinical backgrounds and with decades of experience working in national and international settings. We have been nominated for Nursing Associate Training Provider of the Year two times running in the Student Nursing Times Awards and our nursing department have had eight nominations in the past two years. This summer, our clinical education building has seen large investment to bring the latest simulation innovations to our teaching. This includes AR and VR technology as well as a range of simulation mannequins including the latest SimMan 3G – the first to be purchased by a university in Europe. Visit our website to learn more

Buckinghamshire New University


Buckinghamshire New University has a strong track record of delivering the Nursing Associate course since 2018. Having been involved in the Health Education England (HEE) pilot, BNU has strong relationships with Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and other local NHS trusts, Health Education England and the Nursing and Midwifery Council. We work closely with the NHS trusts to deliver and develop our programmes, ensuring we give our students the skills and knowledge they need for their future careers.

BNU’s Uxbridge Campus is purpose built to deliver our award-winning nursing courses. With state-of-the-art simulation facilities, library, café and Students’ Union, our Uxbridge Campus is a great place to study. You’ll also be ideally located for all your placements at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust.

We also offer a dedicated Placement Learning Unit that works directly with the Imperial education team to plan and support placements throughout the programme. Our specialist staff will also visit you whilst on your placement, to offer you support and guidance.

We are proud that our students and staff are regularly recognised nationally. We were recently shortlisted across five categories in the Student Nursing Times Awards 2021, with the awards ceremony to be held on 4 November 2021. This included Nursing Associate Trainee of the Year and Teaching Innovation of the Year.

For more information, visit our website or email us.

The Open University


Studying with the Open University is different to attending a traditional university. Delivered over two years, there is no requirement to regularly attend a campus – saving time and expense; students can study their academic modules flexibility around other commitments, such as work or home and family life. The tutor-supported online learning is varied and interactive and can be accessed 24/7, and includes a range of learning activities, forums, tutorials and discussion groups.

In 2021, the OU was ranked third across all universities in the National Student Satisfaction Survey, and we are recognised by the NMC as being in the top six per cent of pre-registration nursing providers.

Visit our website to learn more.