I explain that the CPNE is a grueling, exacting clinical competency exam during which our every move is evaluated by Masters-prepared nurses, that this multi-day exam is to ensure that we can function safely as first-day new grads, and the exam consists of lab simulations as well as real-time patient care that spans the full spectrum -- careplanning, implementation, and evaluation. The reality is that every person admitted to EC is not a green, off-the-street person; we are healthcare providers of some type who have had clinicals in the past and are not new to patient assessment or patient care. I explain the admissions policy, which some people don't know about ... they think anyone can walk in and do the program, which is obviously incorrect.
I can't really help with the rest of it ... I had a job in my ED before I even finished EC! I was very lucky, good timing and I worked hard to make myself a "keeper." I felt adequate, yes -- I had a number of years as a paramedic when I became and RN, and I was working in the same ED where I'd been a tech for 3.5 years. Even so, there was a learning curve -- not going to lie! Once I had time management and prioritization down, the rest was smooth. If I didn't know how to do something, I'd ask. I still learn new stuff all the time, even 4.5 years after starting to work as an RN. It never stops.