Great first day of class!

  1. Well, I had my first day of class in my evening/weekend ASN program today (with another 8 hours to follow tomorrow). I've got to say how impressed I am with the two instructors who will be teaching us -- smart, funny, and just plain nice to be around! We've got a lot of work in this particular program versus the day program; everything is compressed, so we'll be covering about 2 weeks' worth of material in each week, but I think most of us are up the challenge. Tons to read, lots to do, but very clear expectations were given to us, and I'm really looking forward to the next two years.

    I'm one of those non-traditional students: not a kid, lots of life experience, a background in massage and post-rehab exercise training. Not much really scares me anymore, and I rarely let things deter me when I make up my mind about something I want. Just remember, all you new students, you've made up *your* minds as well, so try to enjoy each moment of the journey for what it is, and savor the goals you achieve along the way!

    One thing I'd like to share with anyone who's feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the reading ahead of you and not sure of how to proceed: Perhaps you were given (as we were) a list of core knowledge/abilities you'll be expected to grasp for each unit you study. If not, you'll find something like that at the start of each chapter you read. One of the things I find most helpful in studying is to convert those statements into brief essay questions, then "test" myself on them to see just how well I'm understanding the material. When you get used to testing yourself this way, it removes some of the dread you can feel when the *real* tests roll around -- plus you pick up communication skills by clearly explaining just what each concept is. Our tests will be in multiple-choice NCLEX format, so really understanding the rationale behind your choice can do wonders when you have to find the one best answer on your tests.

    Best wishes to all new and returning students! Keep a cool head, take good care of yourself (which includes a special treat or two now and then), and look at each day as a challenge, not an obstacle. There's nothing you aren't ready to handle -- just look how far we've come already!

    Char
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   Mkue
    hello Char, fellow non-traditional student !!

    It is so refreshing to know there are more out there who are also non-traditional.

    Is your program only on weekends and evenings? that is so neat that you can finish in 2 yrs. GREAT !! Good Luck

    and Welcome !!
  4. by   ats
    Thanks for the welcome, Marie!

    Yes, my program is Monday and Wednesday from 6-9 pm, and every other Saturday AND Sunday from 8 am - 5 pm. Weeknights are reserved for lecture and/or seminar topics; weekends are for our skills lab, testing, and/or clinicals. For clinicals, we're also expected to go to the hospital on Friday night after 4 pm to pick up our assignment and prepare for our clinical rotation. Weekends will be long, but there's so much to cover that I doubt I'll be too bored!

    I did have a previous BS degree in marketing, so I've spent the last 17 months straight taking my sciences -- Biology, A&P I and II, Microbiology. Now we're down to the real nitty-gritty, and I somehow can't believe the day has actually come!

    Are you also in an ASN program, or a BSN? I love to read about the different experiences out there! Hope your semester is good one -- let us know how things progress for you!

    Best wishes,

    Char
  5. by   dianacs
    My BSN program is similarly structured. It varies each semester, but will be usually one or two weeknights and every other Saturday and/or Sunday. Takes just over 2 years (7 semesters including summers). It is part-time and you have to have all your prereqs out of the way ahead of time. There is an ASN program here that is one weeknight and every other Sat/Sun from 7-7 BOTH days. Wow! Are most of the people in your program "non-traditional" students? I think most of them are in mine but it doesn't start for another 2 weeks so I can't say for certain. Welcome to the board!
  6. by   ats
    Hi, dianacs! Man, I thought my weekend classes were long....12 HOURS BOTH DAYS???? *shudder*

    I would say that the vast majority of people in my 43-person evening/weekend class would fit into the "non-traditional" category: some in their 20's, most in their 30s to 40s. This is only the second year they've offered the evening/weekend option. As I understand it, the evening students did much better than the traditional daytime students last year. Of course, I think the fact that we tend to be a bit older may have something to do with it.

    In order to keep its accreditation as a 2-year ASN program, a school must have a certain percentage of its students complete their ENTIRE education within that 2 years. That means if you don't have your pre-reqs done, you must complete them along with the nursing curriculum. I know of several students who attempted this last year and were forced to drop because they just could not handle the heavy workload and competing priorities of all their classes. Every one of them was 19 or 20 years old. But the cool thing is, they all recognized that they weren't ready *yet* for such an experience and have decided to just complete their pre-reqs before entering again next year. I'm proud of them that they saw this as a temporary detour, not an ego-shattering experience. (Hey, *I* certainly wouldn't want to give it a try -- I respect them for doing so!)

    I'm glad you found the right program for you, and that your school has found a way for BSN students to attend evening/weekend classes. I am at one of only 2 schools in the Twin Cities to offer such a program (both ASN). As I must continue to work full-time (single, sole income), this is the only workable option for me.

    Good luck to you!
    Last edit by ats on Aug 24, '02
  7. by   Love-A-Nurse
    originally posted by andthensome!
    well, i had my first day of class in my evening/weekend asn program today (with another 8 hours to follow tomorrow). i've got to say how impressed i am with the two instructors who will be teaching us -- smart, funny, and just plain nice to be around! we've got a lot of work in this particular program versus the day program; everything is compressed, so we'll be covering about 2 weeks' worth of material in each week, but i think most of us are up the challenge. tons to read, lots to do, but very clear expectations were given to us, and i'm really looking forward to the next two years.

    i'm one of those non-traditional students: not a kid, lots of life experience, a background in massage and post-rehab exercise training. not much really scares me anymore, and i rarely let things deter me when i make up my mind about something i want. just remember, all you new students, you've made up *your* minds as well, so try to enjoy each moment of the journey for what it is, and savor the goals you achieve along the way!

    one thing i'd like to share with anyone who's feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the reading ahead of you and not sure of how to proceed: perhaps you were given (as we were) a list of core knowledge/abilities you'll be expected to grasp for each unit you study. if not, you'll find something like that at the start of each chapter you read. one of the things i find most helpful in studying is to convert those statements into brief essay questions, then "test" myself on them to see just how well i'm understanding the material. when you get used to testing yourself this way, it removes some of the dread you can feel when the *real* tests roll around -- plus you pick up communication skills by clearly explaining just what each concept is. our tests will be in multiple-choice nclex format, so really understanding the rationale behind your choice can do wonders when you have to find the one best answer on your tests.

    best wishes to all new and returning students! keep a cool head, take good care of yourself (which includes a special treat or two now and then), and look at each day as a challenge, not an obstacle. there's nothing you aren't ready to handle -- just look how far we've come already! :d

    char
    hello, andthensome! i am a non-traditional student too. starting my first nursing classes/clinical on monday and i must say, your words are very encouraging. i do wish you all the best and as always, keep the faith!
  8. by   mbfloyd
    Hi! I am also a non-traditional student: husband, 2 kids and a business to run!
    I started my 1st level nursing classes Aug. 22. Clinicals start tomorrow with an orientation.
    I read about 1-2 chapters a night according to the syllabus handed out the 1st day of each class. I don't read to learn, however. Just skimming the vocab. words and highlighting the definitions. It helps to have some questions in mind before going to lecture!
    Best of luck to all fellow nursing students!
    Missy
  9. by   Love-A-Nurse
    originally posted by mbfloyd
    hi! i am also a non-traditional student: husband, 2 kids and a business to run!
    i started my 1st level nursing classes aug. 22. clinicals start tomorrow with an orientation.
    i read about 1-2 chapters a night according to the syllabus handed out the 1st day of each class. i don't read to learn, however. just skimming the vocab. words and highlighting the definitions. it helps to have some questions in mind before going to lecture!
    best of luck to all fellow nursing students!
    missy:d
    and welcome! all the best to you!
  10. by   RNIAM
    Good Luck to you!
  11. by   colleen10
    Hi AndThenSome,

    Thank you for your encouraging words and I am so glad that things are going well for you!

    I am taking MicroBiology this semester then A&P II next and then I should be done with all of my pre and co-req's.

    I have been thinking a lot about how I am going to get through my clinicals as I have to work and go to school and have been giving a lot of consideration to my schools Evening / Weekend option. I'm a non-traditional student too.

    Mine is every Saturday 7 to 3 and then one evening a week for lab. The lecture component can be done over the internet.

    Anyway, I'd be interested in hearing how you are handling your classes. Do you work full time and go to school? If so, how to you handle it all?

    Any thoughts or advice would be welcomed.

    Good Luck in your new semester!!!

    Col
  12. by   Momto2Boys
    Well I am also a nontraditional student. I am 23 married with two boys (8yrs & 3months). I am just starting school so I am currenlty doing my pre-req. My English teacher is 26! I was so schocked that he was my teacher & he looks so much younger than 26 too. Overall my classes are pretty good. I have Anthropology on Saturday so I will see how that one goes.
  13. by   allthingsbright
    Hey guys,
    I am non traditional (30 yr old) student as well, and am working on my ADN. I have Intro to cell bio, human lifespan and history this semster, a&p with speech next semster, and micro in the summer-then I *just* have clinicals.

    I also have two small kids and didnt want to put them in daycare, so I am doing all my prereqs prior to clinicals on a part time basis (evenings, saturday class, and on WEBCT). I also like the fact that when I get to clinicals I will be able to concentrate completely on them.

    My school just began a 5 wk block clinical rotation-you go only 5 wks out of the semester-every day, then clinicals are over. I believe lecture goes throughout the semester. I am interested to see what thats like.

    Anyway, nice to "meet" you all,
    Amy

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