Advice for the LVN Student

Nursing Students LPN/LVN Students


Specializes in Medical Assisting.

Hello all. Just wanted to introduce myself as a new LVN student, Spring 2011. The program I am going into only takes about 30-40 students at a time. Yay! :yeah: and I made it in! Anyhow, I want to know what sage advice I can gain from I know to not get involved with politics, do your job, ask questions, keep quiet while in school so you can avoid problems, and just do the best you can. Anything else to keep in mind for nursing school and the journey ahead?:rolleyes:

Plan well!!

If you have kids, daycare issues, family drama....figure it all out or at the very least good solid backup plans just in case BEFORE you start.

Start stocking frozen food!

Your kids may come to believe that captain crunch is a major food group if you don't!

STAY ORGANIZED...color code, tab everything whatever...

....and DATE everything..I dropped all my notes...would have been a nightmare had I not had every page labeled to class, and date!

Good Luck

Specializes in Medical Assisting.

Thanks! That sounds like advice that I can definitely put to use. :up:

tired - Hmmmm, some advice. Seeing that I just finished NS, I've got a few pointers. As you can see by my name, that is/was a direct reflection of how I felt all during NS!

1. Never get behind, not even for a nanosecond!

2. Start getting your affairs in order. If you are doing an accelerated program, you will have absolutely NO TIME FOR ANYTHING! Before I started NS, I organized my home, my paperwork, my closets, stocked up on food, and generally planned on being out-of-commission for a year - because, bascially that is what I was!

3. Get some good reference books. If your school does not provide a list of suggested titles, I recommend a good medical dictionary, a nursing drug book (that gives nrsg considerations and pt teaching), a nrsg Dx book (for that endless stream of nrsg care plans that you'll be doing). We also used Saunders NCLEX-PN w/bonus CD (w/3600+ questions). It will be my primary resource as I get ready for the real thing.

4. If you do not have a housekeeper, then plan on your house not being spic-and-span clean. You'll learn soon enough the importance of prioritization, and I discovered early on that I had only so much time. Having to make the decision between cleaning toilets vs studying for that med-surg test...well, it was a no-brainer!

5. will become the queen, if you are not already. It seemed as though I studied all the @#$&*^$% time, especially on Sundays. Sundays were also a big day for laundry and cooking. Soups, stews, jambalaya (and other rice dishes), lentils, curry, lasagna, baked ziti, roasted vegetables, simple cakes, baked chicken, taco meat, you name it; anything that could hold for a few days.

Sample Sunday schedule: get up early, make coffee, start studying before DH and the dog wake up. Make breakfast, study, do a load of laundry, make a pot of something, study some more, fold clothes, cook something else, study some more, do another load of laundry, study....

6. Plan ahead, especially if you are the primary cook, have a hungry man to feed, and/or have kids. Because of the need to make enough food for several days and have it available to not only take to school, but feed DH, I bought extra 1 and 2 qt storage containers (at the restaurant supply) as well as single serving containers - they were a life saver!

7. Inform your family and friends that you will not be available for cookouts, BD parties, weekends away, or summer fun at the lake. FORGET ABOUT IT!

You will be way too busy getting ready for that inevitable Peds final or OB midterm that will be scheduled on the Monday after a weekend of what woulda been fun in the sun. Life as you know it will cease to exist. And that is no BS!

Church didn't happen for me this year. God will forgive me, but there just weren't enough hrs in the day to take the time.

8. Try not to get involved in school drama - and there will be some. Luckily, there wasn't much where I went but several younger students were bound and determined to start some.

I can relay this information because just last week, I finished NS. It was a push and very intense, but I made it. School was real, and at times, fun..but I can honestly say it was not real fun!

This past weekend was my first weekend off since January. I slept for 14 hrs Saturday night and 10 hrs last night. Be prepared to be sleep deprived.

I spent all day yesterday seriously cleaning my house. Moving furniture, knocking down cobwebs, laundering bathroom rugs, cleaning the stove vent, etc.

Good luck and I wish you the best!

Can't believe I forgot to add these tidbits:

9. Carve out a special place in your house where you will be able to study. A comfortable chair (your butt will become one with it, so make sure you really like it), some good lighting, a place for your computer, internet connection (preferably high speed), AND sufficient office supplies, will become apparent.

10. I have always exercised, but my favorite time is early AM. This past year, my early AMs were spent studying. I got no exercise at all. I'm not a body builder but I've always done upper and lower body resistance workouts. I sadly watched my toned muscles disappear this past year. But they will be back.

11. We had to be on the floor for clinicals/receive report at 0700. If you have to commute (I drove an hr to clinical sites), be prepared for 0500 wakeup calls. I made sure all my uniforms, undergarments, and socks were laundered and ready to go the night before (think grade school). Lunches were prepacked ready to throw into the insulated lunch bag. Travel mug washed and ready to fill.

Specializes in Medical Assisting.

Thank you notmanydaysoff! Your advice is well thought out and genuine w/out being very bleak! I am getting mentally ready right now. My kids are older (10 1/2 and 11 [12 in a couple of wks!]) and due to some unfortunate circumstances, my kids and I are living w/ my parents. Even if it does make it easier in many respects, I still have to keep up my end of responsibilities. (Although reconciliation w/ said DH is in the works! ;) ). I love to cook and it sounds like it will be a nice break in between studying on the weekends. As for multitasking, I am quite good at it...I always seem to be doing several things at once! I worked in a doctor's office for almost 5 yrs as a Med. Asst. and am very familiar w/ keeping up w/ several tasks (and patients!) at the same time. I'm sure that I will be able to put many of your suggestions to good use! Thank you very much! :)

Whew. This makes me nervous! My kids are 9 (10 in Feb) and 7 (8 in Dec) and rely on me for EVERYTHING! Guess I better get them ready! I will be making a daily schedule! I have my 19 yr old sister living with me but can't rely on her for crap! I have to tell her what/when/how to do it. Guess I'll be making her a schedule, too!! You're advice is genuine and appreciated. I'm so excited and worried at the same time.

I recently got accepted to LVN program and I will start this coming SPRING 2011. Thank you so much for the advice, it really helps a lot lessen the nervousness and the stress to get ready. Thanks so much!!!:up:

Almost done with my 1st term (out of 3) of my LPN program and my advice is - no matter how prepared you think you are - you are not!!!! I listened to everyone saying how you give up your life and there is no time for anything but I didnt really believe it could be to that extent. Well it is! And I dont have kids or a husband and luckily only work 1 day a week and I still have no time. You must prioritize - school comes first for the next 10 months - or however long your program is. We just had 5 days off and thanksgiving was the only day I didnt work/study. Also, try and do your best right in the very beginning because the tests come fast and furious and sometimes there are 6 tests in one 4 day week. I am so glad that I got a few great grades in the beginning because there wasnt that pressure of the fear of failing when I had to study for 3 tests in 1 day! But it really is the best thing I have done and my friends in class are already like my family - lean on them for support because they are the only ones who know exactly what you are going through. Good luck!

Specializes in Medical Assisting.

It's good to see that others are benefiting from all the good advice. Keep it up, y'all. :D

i dont suppose anyone lives in texas?

Specializes in LTC, Memory loss, PDN.

With all the excellent advice from previous posters, I have but one thing to add.

Create a personal retreat for yourself. Mine was a 15 gallon fish tank. I don't really care that much for fish, but during school, whenever I'd get stuck writing a paper, got frustrated, because after reading a textbook page ten times and I still didn't get it, or got stressed or worn out, I'd take ten or sometimes twenty minutes and sit in front of that aquarium, watch the fish and listen to the relaxing sound of the water running through the filter. Very relaxing or should I say therapeutic. Anyway, you need to have a way of escaping from it all, if only for a few minutes.

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