Nursing school isn't preparing me for the real world

  1. I am in an accelerated master's degree program, only 1 semester in so far (never been a nurse, bachelor's outside of nursing). It definitely is a good program, and I am confident in the material I have learned. Thing is, I feel that at this pace when I graduate I will feel unprepared for the real work world. I expect to go into an acute care setting when I graduate (ICU, etc). So far, I have nothing but A's, and I love being a student and learning everything I can. I just don't feel like this is enough.

    What should I do? How can I better prepare myself? I don't want to go into the real world not being the best I can be in a year.
    •  
  2. Visit yesrun profile page

    About yesrun, EMT-I

    Joined: Feb '18; Posts: 15; Likes: 11
    from NH , US
    Specialty: 5 year(s) of experience

    33 Comments

  3. by   Triddin
    So youre taking a masters in nursing without any nursing experience? And you want to go into acute care? The reason you don't feel prepared, if my above statements are true, is that you have no nursing. There is no nursing masters program in Canada that I know of which would accept a non nurse and I feel that is a good thing. Generally masters programs are for those who have nursing experience, so it doesn't have to go through basic nursing skills. I wouldn't feel prepared without previous nursing experience either.
  4. by   Wuzzie
    What type of masters are you getting?
  5. by   yesrun
    Quote from Triddin
    So youre taking a masters in nursing without any nursing experience? And you want to go into acute care? The reason you don't feel prepared, if my above statements are true, is that you have no nursing. There is no nursing masters program in Canada that I know of which would accept a non nurse and I feel that is a good thing. Generally masters programs are for those who have nursing experience, so it doesn't have to go through basic nursing skills. I wouldn't feel prepared without previous nursing experience either.
    Let me clarify:
    In the US, accelerated BSN programs are basically for those with bachelor's in a non-nursing field. They consist of the core nursing classes and clinical requirements at an accelerated pace without the need for gen-eds that a normal bachelor's degree would require. There are also some programs, like mine, which are at the master's level but serve the same purpose. We have all of the accelerated BSN components with a little extra graduate level work in the research/QI area making it a master's degree.

    Yes, a goal to go into acute care is ambitious, especially directly out of school. It has been done. I want to know what I can do to prepare myself for this outside of the classroom.

    Thank you for the reply though!
  6. by   Wuzzie
    Will you graduate with your FNP or ACNP?
  7. by   yesrun
    Quote from Wuzzie
    What type of masters are you getting?
    As I mentioned just above in the last comment, it is a Master's in Nursing which will lead to a CNL certification. Most of the program revolves around "normal" nursing with the CNL pieces integrated into it.

    I will not have an FNP or ACNP, I'll have an RN and CNL certification.
    Last edit by yesrun on Mar 28 : Reason: Additional question
  8. by   Wuzzie
    Yes I am aware of the fact that it is a masters degree. So you are in a masters program in the Clinical Nurse Leader track. What do you envision your role in the ICU as being? FTR, pretty much all of us here know what a CNL is. I am interested in what you want to do with it.
  9. by   yesrun
    Quote from Wuzzie
    Yes I am aware of the fact that it is a masters degree. So you are in a masters program in the Clinical Nurse Leader track. What do you envision your role in the ICU as being? FTR, pretty much all of us here know what a CNL is. I am interested in what you want to do with it.
    My apologies, I'm new to the forums here - I'm not familiar with everyone's knowledge base or qualifications.

    Thus far, our instructors have said most of us will probably not fill any type of CNL role directly out of school. That will come with some experience. The expectation is that most of us will work as a "regular" RN, if you will, for at least a couple years.

    That said, I plan on doing just that. I'd like to hit the ground running as a staff nurse. In the future, I'm not entirely sure what I'd like to do specifically with the CNL. Only about 50% of the hospitals in my area actually recognize/hire in the CNL role, and I haven't dismissed the idea of an FNP or something of the sort down the road either.
  10. by   Wuzzie
    Quote from yesrun
    My apologies, I'm new to the forums here - I'm not familiar with everyone's knowledge base or qualifications.

    Thus far, our instructors have said most of us will probably not fill any type of CNL role directly out of school. That will come with some experience. The expectation is that most of us will work as a "regular" RN, if you will, for at least a couple years.

    That said, I plan on doing just that. I'd like to hit the ground running as a staff nurse. In the future, I'm not entirely sure what I'd like to do specifically with the CNL. Only about 50% of the hospitals in my area actually recognize/hire in the CNL role, and I haven't dismissed the idea of an FNP or something of the sort down the road either.
    Okay, that plan sounds solid and will impact the responses you'll get here. The truth is nursing school of any sort never really prepares you for the real world so you are not alone in feeling like that. I'm not sure if having a shortened BSN part will impact you or not. It seems to be an individual thing. The best I can offer you is when you do graduate be open to continuing your education during your orientation, understand that as a new grad you really don't know what you don't know (and that's okay) be eager and available, don't sweat the small stuff and be patient...you will get there. Best wishes as you take this journey.
  11. by   yesrun
    Quote from Wuzzie
    Okay, that plan sounds solid and will impact the responses you'll get here. The truth is nursing school of any sort never really prepares you for the real world so you are not alone in feeling like that. I'm not sure if having a shortened BSN part will impact you or not. It seems to be an individual thing. The best I can offer you is when you do graduate be open to continuing your education during your orientation, understand that as a new grad you really don't know what you don't know (and that's okay) be eager and available, don't sweat the small stuff and be patient...you will get there. Best wishes as you take this journey.
    Thank you! I appreciate the words of encouragement. I suppose I may be getting a little ahead of myself.
  12. by   ItsThatJenGirl
    I feel like the more I learn, the more I realize how much I don't know. I think that's true for most nursing students.

    I don't we will actually know what we're doing until we've been practicing for a while.
  13. by   yesrun
    Quote from ItsThatJenGirl
    I feel like the more I learn, the more I realize how much I don't know. I think that's true for most nursing students.

    I don't we will actually know what we're doing until we've been practicing for a while.
    I've heard the same thing, and honestly sort of expect that. I just don't like that feeling - I'd much rather prefer to know what I'm doing going in. Maybe that's just the reality and I need to accept it? Hmmm.
  14. by   Mavrick
    Gotta give you credit for figuring out that you will not be prepared to practice as a functional nurse with the nursing education you received in school.

    Depending on your attitude in allowing yourself to be taught by persons with a "lower" degree than yours, you could make the climb up the steep learning curve presented in critical care areas and do quite well.

    I am wholeheartedly against direct entry advanced level nursing. Even more so the accelerated programs. This dilution of nursing experience in the advanced degrees will hopefully be self limiting. Corporations will figure out they aren't getting their money's worth paying for a nurse with an advanced degree that doesn't know anything special.

    Just curious, if you are in nursing school just how did you get 5 years' nursing experience?

close