What to expect at MATC...

  1. Hi everyone,

    I was recently accepted into MATC's RN program and will begin in January. As excited as I am, I am also incredibly nervous and have a lot of anxiety about the upcoming semester. I don't really know anyone that's further along than me in the RN program, so I have no one to ask for opinions or guidance. Would any of you be able to give me an idea of what to expect the first semester? Do you also happen to know if we can choose our sections for clinical placement or are they selected for us? Thanks
  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   koko2002

    for most, it's a shock because of the amount of studying you have to do in order to be successful. most people do well with their pre req's (anatomy, bio and chem) but nursing classes are very different and most people (75% or more) don't get a's regularly. so for most it can be frustrating and shocking because you study your tail off to just barely get by. 1st semester isn't too bad but again, if you're not totally dedicated to your studies you won't succeed. so just know, it is hard but doable with a lot of hard work, dedication and time management.
    i'm going into the 4th semester in january and i can say, by far, the 3rd semester is the most challenging. you do get to pick your clinical site and instructor each semester.
    i can send you a private message about instructors.
    101: fundamental is a lot of reading and it seems like most people who fail a class in 1st semester, fail 101.
    102: skills class is where you learn all the basic nursing skills like passing meds, taking blood pressures, starting an iv and sterile dressings. in this class you will perform all these skills in front of a clinical instructor and it's a pass or fail.
    103: pharmacology is good but don't take this one online. it's pretty cut and dry and a lot of memorizing and both instructors at the downtown campus are great
    104: clinical starts after complete and pass 101, in the middle of the semester. so your first semester clinical doesn't start until march.
    good luck! oh yeah, one thing that is nice about matc is that after you finish the first two semesters you can take the lpn boards and work as an lpn until you graduate.
  4. by   hopefulgirl
    Thank you so much, I really appreciate it! I can't PM you because I guess I'm ineligible since I have less than 15 posts, maybe you're able to message me with the recommendations? I was considering taking the Fundamental course online since you still meet in class once a week for it, do you think it's doable that way if you're disciplined or am I better off in the classroom?
  5. by   koko2002
    I took 101 online and passed but it does require a lot of reading, 3 exams and in the beginning we still had to be in class to learn how to write care plans. So about 1/3 of the online class was still in person.
    For clinical I think Berte, Thomas, Harrison and if you get Allison Nicol she is by far the best.
    Good luck!
  6. by   melizerd
    I'm glad to hear this! I'm also starting in January and hopefully staying at the Mequon campus. Allison Nicol is my adviser and she's been super helpful so I'm looking forward to trying to get in to as many of her things as I can.

    As a piggyback question even though its technically only 9 credits I know it's time consuming so is that still considered full time for financial aide (pell grant etc)?
    Last edit by melizerd on Nov 5, '11
  7. by   hopefulgirl
    I was told 9 credits is considered 3/4 time so you would get 3/4 of the grant amount. I had the same question
  8. by   melizerd
    Well that stinks! I need some of my financial aide to live on. Definitely means I need to have a meeting with my adviser.
  9. by   hopefulgirl
    It's always good to double check, I'm constantly getting different answers from MATC--nobody is on the same page! Maybe there's an online course you could take bump you up to 12 credits..
  10. by   EMTrn2be
    Hello everyone,

    Well it looks like I have stumbled upon the perfect discussion forum. I have also been accepted into the Registered Nursing program starting this January! Looking forward to it, yet also very nervous. Thank you koko2002 for your very helpful and detailed information. I know I will be fine, just a little apprehensive about taking on the classes. I currently work as an EMT and know several nurse who are in the program or have recently graduated from the program. I am truly pleased that the tuition is significantly lower in comparison to others schools.
    --Looking forward to the orientation on Dec 6th! See you all there. I'll try keeping in touch. If you all want we can try emailing each other since I cannot 'privately message anyone' ? Let me know your thoughts on that.

    -- Take care! and Congratulations to all of you. We'll be just fine.. Celebrate your last few weeks of freedom while you still can.
  11. by   EMTrn2be

    Koko2002.. Any suggestions on what we should be looking over from now until January? Just so that we can be prepared.. ?? Maybe like a list of the drug we should start reviewing now? I was thinking about purchasing the Pharmacology text book early to look over it.

    Thoughts, or suggestions would greatly be appreciated

  12. by   koko2002
    Things that would be helpful before school starts in January:

    Nursing dosage calculation math problems. You will have a math test on dosage/calculation during the 1st semester that you must get 100% on. During semester one they are basic calculations but if you're not use to doing them they can be tricky. Here is a great site for you to get you started. http://www.lahc.edu/classes/nursing/...SING%20333.pdf

    If you have the text books, the only reading that would be helpful before starting would be your Fundamentals of Nursing book reviewing how to write care plans.

    Most everything else (pharmacology, skills and fundamentals) you really need to learn from the instructors. Because as you will see once you start nursing school, you have to learn it they way they teach it.

    As a side note, before school starts, I think it's a great idea to find some de-stressing activities that you enjoy like walking, gym or yoga and think about ways to incorporate them into your schedule. Nursing school for most people is incredibly stressful and having an outlet to de-stress is REALLY important. Also, I know it's harder for students who have kids or have to work but in order to be successful and graduate you really have to make school your primary focus. I also think it's really important to meet a group of students who you can study well with. This will most likely happen naturally because everyone is looking for a study group right from the beginning.
  13. by   hopefulgirl
    Thanks--I'm grateful for any pointers you might have, I kind of feel like I'm heading into this blind!
  14. by   EMTrn2be

    Thank you for the heads up and pointers! I will print out that link and review it. That's very helpful of you! It only has been a few semesters since I finished A&P , however, I feel like I can't remember what I learned in it. LOL. I got a A in the class, but I think I am just working my self up.

    And Hopefulgirl I also feel like I am heading into this blind. The important thing to look at is you got in! Your academic standing must be somewhat good, and administration choose you amongst many other applicants. We both should both be happy about that! That is reason to definitely reason to celebrate!

    I feel the teachers help you and want you to succeed. It scares me, however, when I hear of the teachers who intentionally try to weed students out of the program :/

    We'll be fine though!

    Keep in touch if you want. I know a girl that will also be in the program, if you need a study partner let us know!