You'll do fine. I've been a nurse for a year and started out working in the emergency room (still there). It's not a big trauma center or anything, but we stay fairly busy (36000 pts. a year or so). Once you get working there, you'll see that many of the patients aren't as acutely ill as they would like you to believe, but you'll get a good mix of highly acute patients, and patients of, a, ahem, much lower acuity. As far as not seeing the gruesome stuff, it depends on the location of the hospital. For us, we serve a specific area, so unless a patient gets flown directly from a MVC or something, they come to us, we stabilize them, and then they are transported to one of the trauma centers that are within a 60-70 mile radius or so. Still, don't be scared. Emergency care can be overwhelming, but they are not going to feed you to the animals when you first start. ER nurses know that you can't just throw somebody out there. You're not going to be the exclusive caretaker for a patient with chest pain, because in order to administer many drugs and properly monitor those patients, you must be ACLS certified, which I'm guess you probably aren't since you're still in school. You'll be under someone else's supervision, (usually one of the more experienced nurses). It will be okay, just keep working at it. Just remember to pay attention, and if they let you chart, chart well. It's sometimes hard in the fast paced enviroment of the ER, but charting is a reflection of the care you give, and also legally binding, so do your best. Keep your head up, and emergency nursing could be one of the most rewarding nursing experiences you have in school (it was for me, that's why I do what I do).
BSN in May
Starting MSN program (going to be an ARNP) next fall.