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is anyone here in SC4's program or been in it?

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hello-

i will be starting at sc4 in the fall, and am very excited... i am looking for someone who has been in there program or is in it now. I am curious as to what to expect from SC4. Any info would be greatly apprecitated.

Thanks in advance-

Congratulations on getting accepted. I heard it was harder this year to get in because of the added requirements. Give yourself a pat on the back for doing so well. :-)

I'm finishing up my first year in the sc4 program right now. Finals next week! One year down, only one more year to go!

I won't lie to you. It's not easy. They really work you to the bone, especially that first semester. And the grading scale is tough as nails. I thought I would die by the time fall break came around last November. Nursing school gives a whole meaning to stress. But the good news is, it is very doable. I'm living proof.

All I can really tell you is to study, study, study! There's no getting around it, you need to read the material and find a way to help you memorize important facts. I found that index cards work really well for me. It takes some extra time writing them out, but they are a lifesaver when it comes to taking tests. The nice thing about them is they are portable and you can take them anywhere. When you are sitting in the dentist waiting room or at a stoplight, you can whip those babies out and flip through them while you are waiting. Take really good notes in class. And for sure pay close attention during the nursing process seminars. You are going to see NP over and over again--in every single textbook, every single test, every single care plan. You are going to become so familiar with "assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementation, evaluation" you will start saying it in your sleep!

Don't freak out if you don't do as well on tests as you would like. I will be completely honest and tell you that I failed my first 3 tests (2 in skills, 1 in fundamentals). Like, I seriously, seriously bombed them--it would have been considered failing even without the nursing grading scale. It really shook me up. I cried and cried, and I thought maybe I wasn't cut out for nursing school. But it gets better. Towards the middle of the semester, something clicked in my brain, and the tests weren't so bad anymore. They were still hard, but I didn't fail any more after that. I even got 100% on a few of them, and I ended up passing all of my classes with a B average or better. If I can do it, you can do it! Just don't give up!

Don't listen to rumors about the evil instructors. They aren't really out to get you. They want to help. But don't wait for them to approach you. If you have a problem or a question, go to their office after class and talk to them. They are more than willing to take the time out to listen and to give you advice. Mrs. Cristofori is especially sweet about that. She went through the tests that I failed and explained them question by question. She patted me on the back and told me not to give up. She said it gets easier. I didn't believe her at first, but she was telling the truth. It does get better after a while.

The first semester is a killer. It's basically make or break. That's all there is to it. BUT, if you can make it through fall, you can do anything. There's still a lot of work in the winter semester, but it's not as bad. I might dare to go as far as to say that I have enjoyed this semester. OB clinicals are the best. What can be better than holding tiny newborn babies every day? And I even allowed myself to get a part time job and to take a day or two off per week from studying to do whatever I felt like doing. I feel like I can breathe again. Even so, I am sooo looking forward to summer break!

None of this was meant to scare you. Yes, it takes a lot of hard work and prayer, and even tears to make it through, but you can do it! You will do it! Three cheers for the nursing class of 2010!

Thank you so much for being so candid with me. I have heard it is a really rough program. I am so ready for it. I do already have A&P 2 done so I won't have to worry about that. I do have a couple questions if you don't mind.... my first question is how many days a week will i expect to go if i have all my liberal art classes done? How long are the lectures? How do clinicals work? I am sure I will get all the answers in my orientation, but i am so curious now. Also, what should i do to prepare over the summer leading into the fall?

Someone told me that I will be in lecture from 12-9pm that seems like a really loooonnnng lecture. I am having a hard time swallowing that rumor. I am hoping that is our clinicals. OH! as far as the first semester what type of clinicals do we do? I'm sorry....:bow: i am just so excited to finally have another student that is going through it right now.

Thank you so much for all of your help. good luck to you!!!

Here is a copy of what my schedule was during the fall semester.

Monday: Nursing Process seminar (for 1/2 the semester) 10:00-11:50 AM

Skills lab 12:45-3:45 PM

Tuesday: study day

Wednesday: Fundamentals 8:00-10:50 AM

Pharmacology 12:00-1:50 PM

Assessment 2:15-3:30 PM

Assessment lab is every other week, same time, but a different room. You get to practice doing head-to-toe assessments on your classmates before you do it on actual patients.

Thursday/Friday: Clinicals. During the first half of the semester it was 7:00 AM-12:00 PM. The last half was 1:00-9:15 PM.

During the first few weeks of school, clinicals will be on campus. Basically you are going to be watching about a million videos from the 80s, and practicing some basic skills like taking temperatures and using a gait belt to lift someone out of bed. The next few weeks will be spent at a nursing home. Pretty much you'll be doing a nurses aid job. Bathing, feeding, changing sheets, helping with activities of daily living. It's a lot of physical work, so you're probably going to work up a sweat. Be prepared to come home in damp clothes from giving showers.

The last half of the semester you get to go to the med surg floor of a hospital and practice your newly learned assessment skills on poor unsuspecting patients! You'll be doing vital signs and charting in the computers. You get to give medications, shots, put in and take out catheters, NG tubes, the works. You'll still be doing a lot of aid work again, but you get to do RN work too, so it's not too bad. Pretty much the only thing you can't do is touch the IVs. I actually liked the hands-on clinical aspect of school. I felt like I was really doing something worthwhile. You will learn so much just by talking with your patients. It certainly is a lot more fun than filling out the syllabus for pharm!

There is a lot of paper work that you have to do for clinicals, though. You are going to have to turn in assessment profiles, lab sheets, and drug cards. By the end of the semester you will be filling out 13 page assessment profile pages. It's very thorough, and quite time consuming. Ms. Lukas (the instructor for assessment class) loves DETAILS! She'll mark you down if she thinks you missed something important. It took me forever to fill those things out at first, but later on as I had more practice, I worked out a little system and it didn't take nearly as long toward the end of the semester. But the good news is, you probably won't have to do any care plans this fall. That comes in the winter semester.

When you go to the orientation and the summer seminar, they will give you all the information you need to know. You'll have opportunity to ask questions to instructors, as well as to second year nursing students. (Who knows, I might be one of those students on the panel this summer! That would be fun!) They are going to give you a reading list that you should complete before the first day of classes. It's a lot of chapters, especially for pharmacology. I highly recommend that you read them in advance and try to fill out your syllabuses before the start of the semester. Try doing a couple chapters a week instead of cramming it all in the week before school begins, that way you won't stress yourself out and have to scramble to keep up. It may seem overwhelming and like it's killing your summer vacation, but it will make things a little easier for you in the beginning. I didn't do it that way last summer, but in retrospect, I wish I had!

Basically, the best advice I can give you is to try your best to stay ahead in your homework and reading. It is so, so easy to fall behind and almost impossible to catch up when you do. Life happens, obviously, and it's okay to fall behind maybe one week, but no more than that. It would be insane trying to catch up on two weeks of work! Believe me, I did it once. I learned my lesson. lol

I don't mean to overwhelm you, I'm just laying it out as it is. I wish someone had been this straight forward with me when I started. I hope it helps! Good luck to you!

If you have any more questions, feel free to ask. I'll try my best to answer them as honestly and clearly as I can. I'm sure other SC4 students would love to give their two cents also, that is if they ever read this thread. :-)

Thank you-

I am glad that you shared your experience with me. It is really helpful to have some sort of clue of what I am going to be doing b4 I get started.. I now feel like I am walking into this with some what of an idea of what to expect.

Thank you, you have been a huge help. I really appreciate it.

:up:

Hi... me again! lol. I do have another question. I need some advice. I am scheduled to take developmental psy in the summer. The class meets mon, tue,and wed. I was wondering if you thought if it would be in my best interest to drop that class and just concentrate on my readings and preparing for the first semester. Then I could take that class the following summer. I am sure I will have a lot of stuff to read that summer to prepare for the fall, but at least i will have an idea of what to expect. Should I hold off on develop psy? I just don't want to be overwhelmed with the homework from that class then the reading and preparing for the program. Why stress myself if i don't need to be. Right? Plenty of stress seems to be coming my way starting in the fall. Why rush it. lol

what do you think? If it was you what would you do?

Thanks again-

:lol2:

Well, I think that decision is entirely up to you. I had all of my liberal arts classes completed the spring I found out I was accepted, so I never had to really worry about it. However, knowing that all of them are done and out of the way is a huge relief. All I need to concentrate on are my nursing classes. I've taken a few summer courses before, and I really liked them because they only last 5 or 6 weeks and then you are done! If I were you, I believe I would go ahead and get that psychology class over with. I think you'll have plenty of time to do that and get your summer reading list finished. But like I said, the choice is up to you.

Lemonaidangel,

Your posts are helpful and informative. I was accepted for 2009. Please let me know the hours clinicals are( morning or evening and do you get to chose for yourself when you want to go ) and what hospitals you had to go to (where was the furthest one from school)?

Any tips for first year are greatly appreciated:]

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