I am a registered Social Worker and have worked as an academic at the University of Derby since 1999. I qualified as a Social Worker in 1984 and worked in a wide range of statutory settings in both children and adult services. Some of the more specialist roles I was involved in included: working as a Liver Transplant Social Worker at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, Adoption and Fostering Officer in Staffordshire, and Social Worker specialising in Physical Disability in Essex. My interest in supervising students on placement led me into social work practice education and mentoring. In 1999, I initially combined generic social work practice with sessional lecturing at the University of Derby, until I made the decision in 2003, to become a full-time lecturer in social work, health and social care, youth and community studies. My career in academia progressed from Senior Lecturer to Programme Leader in Health and Social Care, to Deputy Head of Department and more recently to Academic Lead in Social Work and Social Care at the University of Derby’s Online Learning Department (UDOL).