Remembering My Life as a Nursing Student

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    I came from a provincial public school. When I graduated I was not sure of the course I’ll be taking up in college. It was my parents who told me to study Nursing although my interests were with social sciences.

    They let me take the entrance exams in Universities with Nursing programs; setting aside my chance to study in the University of the Philippines where I passed for the course Sociology. So there I was, I took the entrance exams in two Universities where I luckily passed and qualified as a full scholar in Far Eastern University in Morayta.

    My first year as a college student in Nursing was anything but ordinary compared to other first years of other courses. The Nursing program during my time, requires the student to study primarily all the basic subjects of tertiary education. We have no Nursing-related subjects in first year. The exciting times of being a Nursing student started on the second year. Those were the time when we had our Anatomy subject and the first related learning experience termed as “RLE”. There were a lot of changes made when we became sophomores in our Nursing Institute.

    Actually, during those times, it made me feel entirely different from all the other students of the University. There was an undeniable difference when you look at a Nursing student and other students from other institutes in our school. You see, in our school, we have this school uniform which is worn by everyone: polo and a green pants with patches from respective institutes where the student belonged.

    Amongst all the students of the University, only the Nursing students have their own way of wearing the uniform. The guys were to have their polo tucked into their pants. All the students are also advised to have their hair neatly looking all the time as well as well-shaven faces for the guys. The measurement for haircut was 2 finger breaths from the side and 3 finger breaths from the back. I really hate that rule, for I am used to wear my hair a little longer. So what will do if you don’t abide by the said rules? Punishment of course: grade deduction for the said day. Even the girl’s skirts were measured when you’re a Nursing student!

    The skirt should be an inch or so below the knee. Ever wondered why Nursing students were like that? I never realized that until I earned the degree: It is for them to gain discipline. We were much disciplined, when we were nursing students and that goes on until we graduate and have our jobs.

    One of the most memorable experiences I had when I was a Nursing student was when I had my RLE. There were a lot of RLE’s. We would have it in the community, hospitals, clinics, and other health institutions where nurses are present. The community RLE’s were a lot of fun and also one of the most “toxic” times when I was a nursing student, especially when I had my first Community Nursing Diagnosis. It was very exhausting when we had the survey. Those were the beginning of the sleepless nights. Sleepless nights continued until I graduated and still continued on when I reviewed for the Board Exam. I guess all Nurses could relate on that.

    Of all the RLE’s, what really marked my nursing student years was when I had my hospital exposures. The hospital is always full of action, drama and all of the scenes you could ever imagine. I was always very excited when I am inside the hospital premises to the point that I was always scolded by my Clinical Instructor that time. I am fond of reading all of the patient’s charts and asking my instructor of all the things I could not understand on the chart. I was a very annoying student for my instructors then; always asking questions and explain things in front of my group mates.

    One of the best things I love doing until now in the Graduate School is presenting cases especially making “super-detailed Pathophysiology of diseases”.

    I remember my group mates sleeping on my discussions going on for around 2-3 hours in every presentation.

    Being in the hospital is a very pleasant experience for me, and being a nurse myself; going through all of those experiences made me think that Nursing isn’t too bad after all. In fact it is one of the best courses I could ever imagine. After my four long years of being a nursing student, I struggled with my review. I even remembered hoping and wishing to top the Board.

    When I graduated and passed the board until today, I always look back on those times being a nursing student. Even though it is quite hard to land a Nursing job these days, and new nurses really struggle hard to earn a living, I’m still thankful that I became a Nurse.

    As every Nurse always says, being a Nurse is a calling and not everyone is called. There is a divine purpose for the profession that is to serve the most needing your services. Even though almost everyone is taking up Nursing, staying on the profession after you graduate is when you will have the full realization of the path you have chosen. Nursing isn’t just a course or a profession. It is a philosophy of life, where you’ll be able to see life in a different perspective when you indulge yourself in Nursing. That’s what I started to realize when I was a Nursing student and what I’m continuously realizing up to the present.
    Last edit by Joe V on Jan 9, '15
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  3. by   RelloydRN
    Be proud you are a TAMaNurse!

    Not a lot of students get past FEU and I admire your dedication to continue your studies.
  4. by   francesca22
    Wonderful, compelling, well written post. Thank you so much for sharing your experience. It sounds very much like the rigid discipline imposed on students at my nursing college in the 50's. Scarcely a day passed that I didn't want to quit, it was so stressful and all-consuming.
    Looking back on those days and my long career, I wouldn't take anything in exchange for the experience of learning, thereafter skillfully applying those skills in the service of my fellow beings in such an intimate, caring, loving way.