Share your 1st week of LPN school experience

  1. I can't wait to start LPN school, but I must admit, since I'm so shy, I am very intimidated and nervous about going back to school.

    I'd love to hear everyone's experiences when you started LPN school. Were you nervous? How long had it been since you had been in school? Were the majority in your class around the same age as you? Did you question yourself, or feel overwhelmed with the assignments?

    Then, once you finished the entire program, did you feel that you'd learned a lot, and were much more confident to go out into the workforce?

    Thanks for responding!
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  2. 21 Comments

  3. by   TheCommuter
    My first week of LPN school was uneventful, easy, and misleading. I was under the impression that all of my classmantes would get along in harmony and that I would really learn something while in school.

    However, some of my female classmates turned out to be catty and vindictive, mostly the younger ones who were freshly graduated from high school. I did not really learn skills in school and have had to acquire most of my nursing knowledge and judgment from employment. For example, the first time I catheterized a patient was while working as a nurse because I had never learned it in school. My school's purpose was to teach students how to approach and answer NCLEX-style questions, and I will admit that they did a good job for that single purpose.

    The classmates ranged from 17 to 43 years old. It had been 3 years since I was last in any type of school.
    Last edit by TheCommuter on Nov 30, '06
  4. by   pagandeva2000
    I am 42 years old, and just became an LPN this year. I wasn't intimidated per se, but maybe a bit overwhelmed. Like Commuter stated, it was not an atmosphere of togetherness and solidarity. I remember the first exam we had, I was the only one that got an A. I didn't announce it, (I had a rule that I made to myself that I would never speak of my grades), but people sensed it was me, and it was uncomfortable, because I did what I assumed everyone would do, and that was STUDY. Personally, due to the cat-fights and pettiness, I pretty much stayed to myself, and that was the best decision, because I did have peace of mind. I didn't even attend my own graduation, simply because I was more focused on passing the state boards than a ceremony, where I didn't really know for sure if I would be a nurse or not.

    Also, again, I have to agree with Commuter...most of the skills are obtained at work...not in school. That was the shock of my life...for example...some schools cram pharmacology in your brain, but they don't mention how the drug arrives to the unit and how it has to be reconstituted or catheterizing an overweight woman, whose urethra has to be discovered with a flashlight in the bright daylight.
  5. by   crazy4Him
    After reading the posts I must admit that I was very blessed. I am 50 years old, been out of school 30 years and graduated the past July with my LVN. Our class of 45 worked well together. There were all ages in my class, with the majority under 25 years old. We were a family, so much so that when we had our graduation many were crying because they wouldn't be together on a daily basis anymore. We DID have our groups that studied together. But in clinical we all helped each other out. I think that most of us all got to do it "all". I made sure that I was very visible and let all the nurses (where ever I was) know that I wanted to do anything and everything. I did foleys, bed sore packing, trach suctioning, well, you get the picture. Ieven got to help deliver a baby and did the first assessing and apgar. I even got to insert a foley in a women who was over 400 lbs. It took 6 of us...two for each leg, one holding a flashlight and me doing the searching and inserting. We were very well prepared, so much so that every one in my class who has taken the NCLEX has passed the first time, mostly with only 85 questions (28 so far). So like I said, I feel very blessed. In my school, I found that I was responsible for making my education and experiences what I wanted it to be. I'm sure they aren't all like that but like I said I made sure I did as much as I could.

    Yes, I doubted myself at times. As a matter of fact, several of us had a joke when we were overwhelmed and thought we couldn't do it, or when we were sure that we just bombed a test, that we were going to start a window washing business. Our joke kept our instructors puzzled for quite some time. So I think some insecurity is normal, just don't let is cripple you.

    Now that it is all said and done, I never once doubted that I would pass the NCLEX. I look back and see how much knowledge I've gained and how much I've grown. I also found out that I really enjoy learning; so I think I will keep on going to get my RN.

    Keep you eyes on the goal and good luck to you.
  6. by   maddiesmommy
    Thanks everyone for your responses!

    crazy4him~ I am praying when I do go back to school, that my experience is just like yours. It sounds so wonderful, and thank you for sharing your story.
  7. by   Ltorres5351
    Wow crazyforhim what a nice experience. I will start the lpn prgm on march 2007. I am located in miami, originally from NYC. I have a BA in Health administration and 2 yrs of bio but i was trying to get in the Rn accelerated program but its taking way too long. So I decided to take LPN Prgm and I did pass the NLN entrance exam. Now my concerns are is the program really intense? The program director explained to me that it will be fine for me because of my education background, but I still get really nervous....I remebr when in NYC I was doing Anatomy and Physiology we all helped each other to be able to over come this. I recieved a B which was great!

    How long was your program for LPN, mine will be for 16 months. Which class would you had consider to be a little difficult? Do you suggest anything while I wait to start on March 6 2007.

    Lizzy
  8. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from Ltorres5351
    How long was your program for LPN, mine will be for 16 months. Which class would you had consider to be a little difficult? Do you suggest anything while I wait to start on March 6 2007.
    My program was full-time and 12 months long. I suggest you enjoy your time and relax until March 2007 because there won't be much relaxation time while you're an LPN student. Good luck.
  9. by   April Showers
    I am a current LPN student in NC. Our course is only 9 months not counting prerequesites. It is very fast paced (3 semesters squished into 2) and stressful, but I love it. We started in August and are just about half way through. My first week was daunting. We started on a tuesday and by the following monday, we already had a test. I have done very well so far, and like I said above, I really enjoy it. Just remember to study. If you ever feel like you have free time (which you wont), study!! We have lost 2 students already out of 20. Just keep focused and take it seriously and you will do well. Best of luck!!
  10. by   labvampire
    Hi, I am half way through the LPN Program at ICC in Illinois. The first month didn't phase me, I have been waiting for this and worked in health care for 8 yrs and I was so ready it's not funny. Eeveryone is like a family and we have all become extremely close. We lunch together everyday, call each other every night, and if it wasn't for my friends I would have broken down along the way. Our program is very fast paced and stressful. You cannot be a loner in these programs, you must have support from your classmates. I am married with two kids and in school full time. Thank goodness I don't have to work going through this, most don't make it if they do. We have a skills lab and have to complete the skill before we can perform it on the floor of the hospital. We have to perform the skill with an instructor in the room, then after we are observed we are able to do the skill by ourself. Our school has a 98% NCLEX pass rate and that's how the tests are based. It is a completely different way of thinking. Critical thinking is what they coin it. When you take a test in NCLEX form, what you think is the right answer is usually the last thing you would pick. You have to apply your critical thinking to each question and they only give us one minute per question because that what you get on the state boards. You will do fine since you are already in health care. I have to admit, I am glad I had 8 yrs behind me before I started!! Good Luck!
  11. by   Ltorres5351
    Do you know more less what is the pay salary?
    Also I have been told that LPNS are almost like Medical Assistants, Is that true?

    Lizzy
  12. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from Ltorres5351
    Do you know more less what is the pay salary?
    I assume you are in California. I attended LVN school in the Los Angeles area last year before moving to Texas. Most of the Southern California employers who came to our school's career fair last year were offering jobs with pay rates ranging from $15 to $21 per hour. The clinics and doctors offices were offering $15, the major hospitals were offering $16 to $17, and the nursing homes/extended care facilities were offering $18 to $21 hourly. I currently earn $18.50 here in Texas. In general, nursing homes offer the best pay rates.
    Quote from Ltorres5351
    Also I have been told that LPNS are almost like Medical Assistants, Is that true?
    It depends on the state in which you are practicing. In Texas, I do a whole lot more that Medical Assistants because our state's LVN scope of practice is very wide and permissive, which allows Texas LVNs to do virtually everything except hang and spike blood. California's LVN scope scope of practice is very limited since you guys cannot pronounce death, start IVs, give blood products, etc.
  13. by   Ltorres5351
    Thanks for the info, I am not in CAli, Im in Miami Florida,

    I wanted to know do the Lpns do the same jobs as Medical Assistants. I am not a MA but just want to know.... Are Lpns allowed to give injections, and what other things are LPNS job dutie...
  14. by   cant_not
    My first week of LPN school was pretty uneventful and easy for me. I was already a CNA (took cna and home health aide in high school) and already knew about everything that was covered in Fundamentals. But about 2-3 months in, it got VERY intense.

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