Nursing student needs advice!!!!

  1. Please all, no one seems to respond to this subject when I post!

    I need some advice on which specialty to choose for my nursing program, we get med/surg clinicals but then we get to pick a certain specialty to do a preceptorship (i think thats right??) Also I am wondering what everyones specialty is in and why they like it or dont like it! thanks!!!!!
    Last edit by galaxy781 on Apr 21, '05
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    About galaxy781

    Joined: Apr '05; Posts: 147; Likes: 4
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    12 Comments

  3. by   BonnieSc
    What specialties do you have to choose from? What have you enjoyed most / disliked most so far in your clinicals? Let us know a little more about you!
  4. by   pricklypear
    I don't know how far along in school you are, but surely you have some idea of what interests you. I don't think you will find anybody better than you to make that decision! I was interested in cardiac patients, so I did my final preceptorship on a step-down tele unit. It was a great experience for me.
  5. by   galaxy781
    Ok maybe i shouldve rephrased...my apologies all

    I know what intersts me, and the trouble is...at this point it all interests me...I havent started clinicals yet but I will in about a month. The three areas we get to choose from for our preceptorship are: pediatrics, which really interests me but I just dont know how well ill deal with being around sick children all the time, I love kids but I think it would be heart wrenching at times, OBGYN which is also interesting to me, and last but not least psychiatric nursing, which of course interests me as I have a bachelors degree in psychology, sociology and criminology. I guess i shouldve been more clear in that i just would like to know what every does and why they like it or not like it so that maybe you all will bring up some points i havent thought of, besides im just curious what all is out there, maybe there are some fields i havent even thought of! I know in the end that I can make my own decision but in the mean time there is nothing wrong with exploring! I have also though about working in the ER but I hear that it is more stressful than some other floors? I have also thought about ICU? who knows....just wondering what everyone does!
  6. by   pricklypear
    In my program, we did our preceptorship in our last semester - after we had done all our regular rotations. That's how I got a feel for what I liked and didn't like.

    I just re-read your post, you only get to pick from those three??? We had a pretty wide variety. The point of it was to give us a more realistic view of life on the other side would be like. What would be the point of doing all that work in a specialty you had no interest in??
    I guess my "specialty" is ICU. I didn't start out there, and I probably would have hated it if I did. I love it most days! And I like it a lot better than being on the floor. I'd rather be REALLY stressed over 1 or 2 patients than spread thin over a whole bunch of them! I like knowing everything about 1 or 2 patients, I feel like I'm really taking care of everything. When I was on the floor, I felt like all I could do sometimes was take care of basic needs, if that. But I work with nurses who hate coming to ICU "It's WAY to stressful!!" To each his own!! It's just a really good thing we don't all like the same thing!
  7. by   galaxy781
    Im not really sure exactly, I know that we have a full rotation for clinicals but i think that one of our last courses in my program they offer those three choices for higher study? Its kind of confusing i'm in an MN program rather than an MSN program, so our course of study is a bit different..but the program is accelerated. Has anyone worked for the NICU? I think I would like that.
  8. by   JBudd
    Try making a list of specific things you liked in each area, and see if there is a trend. "I like it all" is too vague to make decisions on, what do you like? Teaching someone pre-op? Having the same patient several days in a row so you can follow progress? Something new every day? Changing dressings? Starting IV's? Lots of head stuff or lots of technical stuff? Wound care? Medical care?

    Yeah, lots of stuff is interesting, but what pulls you? Make a list of stuff you do, take the first two and ask yourself, which one would I want to do more?, then the next 2, eventually sort them all out by which ones stay near the top of the list.

    Medical floor gives continuity, not quite as much wound care, some infectious "dirty patients", some cardiac "clean patients"
    Surgical gives wound care, continuity, "clean patients"
    ED is a constant shifting from one thing to another, controlled chaos
    You already know pysch (NOT my cup of tea!)
    Peds is kids, some sicker than others, I worried about dealing with little ones, but that's when they need you the most
    OB: coaching women
    All of this is ENORMOUSLY overgeneralized, but it starts you off in a direction. So, again, what specific things do you like most?

    Good luck! :hatparty:
  9. by   nursepotter05
    I did my preceptorship in ICU and I liked it. However, we did not have the choice of doing peds or I would have chosen peds! Peds is my speciality. It is heartwrenching at times, but so is any other area!
  10. by   galaxy781
    thanks all I really appreciate your replys,

    Maybe I am being a little vague, Im not really worried about choosing a specialty per se, I know that when the time comes I'll make the right decision, I guess what i really want to know, (im just curious really) is what everyone does and why they llike it! Do you work in pediatrics? why did you choose it ? do you work in cardiac, are you a school nurse, are you a travel nurse, why do you love it? etc...i woulld really really just like to know what all of you guys do? i dont know that what everyone says will effect my decision but i would just like to know, besides i think it would be a fun thread if everyone shared their specialty and why they love it! (or not love it)
  11. by   Spacklehead
    My specialty is the ED and I have been there for about 5 years, now. I started out in cardiac (which I liked a lot) but after a couple of years, I felt it was time for a change - I felt like I was missing something since the ED always seemed to spark my curiosity.

    I finally was given the opportunity when a small rural hospital had an RN position in the ED available. I loved it right from the beginning. I knew that the ED was where I belonged. I can easily say that I never truly felt comfortable on the cardiac floor but in the ED, I felt at "home."

    I guess what I love about it is that you never know what you're going to see or treat. It could be the simplest complaint like a splinter to a full-blown cardiac resuscitation in progress (usually both in the ED at the same time). I feel that the ED utilizes all of my clinicals from nursing school since we see it all (peds, med-surg, ortho, psych, ob-gyn, etc.). You have to be on top of your game and be ready for the unexpected. You also have to have great critical thinking skills as well as a great sense of humor. Also, being able to improvise and multi-task are important, too. Your shift can have a down-time where it seems like nothing is going on and then, all of sudden, patients and ambulances just seem to never stop coming through the doors.

    Finally, I think the thing that I love most about the ED is the true sense of teamwork and comraderie among the staff. I never had such great working relationships with other nurses, doctors, and nursing assistants as I do in the ED.

    Hope this helps with your question.
  12. by   galaxy781
    Quote from Softballmama
    My specialty is the ED and I have been there for about 5 years, now. I started out in cardiac (which I liked a lot) but after a couple of years, I felt it was time for a change - I felt like I was missing something since the ED always seemed to spark my curiosity.

    I finally was given the opportunity when a small rural hospital had an RN position in the ED available. I loved it right from the beginning. I knew that the ED was where I belonged. I can easily say that I never truly felt comfortable on the cardiac floor but in the ED, I felt at "home."

    I guess what I love about it is that you never know what you're going to see or treat. It could be the simplest complaint like a splinter to a full-blown cardiac resuscitation in progress (usually both in the ED at the same time). I feel that the ED utilizes all of my clinicals from nursing school since we see it all (peds, med-surg, ortho, psych, ob-gyn, etc.). You have to be on top of your game and be ready for the unexpected. You also have to have great critical thinking skills as well as a great sense of humor. Also, being able to improvise and multi-task are important, too. Your shift can have a down-time where it seems like nothing is going on and then, all of sudden, patients and ambulances just seem to never stop coming through the doors.

    Finally, I think the thing that I love most about the ED is the true sense of teamwork and comraderie among the staff. I never had such great working relationships with other nurses, doctors, and nursing assistants as I do in the ED.

    Hope this helps with your question.
    yes thank you!! thats exactly what i was looking for in this thread, sorry if i didnt word it right! i'm not always that great with words..

    Now one stupid question...ED is the Emergency Room right? I thought so but ive never heard anyone call it "ED" I have always thought of working in the ER, have you ever gotten to assist in delivering a baby?
  13. by   Spacklehead
    Yes, ED stands for Emergency Department (since it isn't a "room" anymore).:chuckle I actually did assist with a delivery once since our hospital did not have an OB unit and the patient was too close to delivery to transfer out to the other hospital. It was a scary situation since it was only an RN, the doc, and an EMT that worked in our ER on each shift, so I had to call the nsg. super. to get a floor nurse to cover the ED while I helped our doc with the delivery. Luckily, we weren't too busy at the time!

    It was very exciting, but I think I would have enjoyed the experience more after I had given birth to my own children - not while I was pregnant with my 1st!

    The nice thing was that our main hospital (we were a smaller satellite hospital) sent a "delivery team" from their L&D unit that arrived just in time for the delivery, so a true OB nurse was also there to help. I certainly learned a lot that day!
  14. by   galaxy781
    wow what a great story! anyone else? what does everyone else do?? any other awesome experiences??

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