Okay, sorry it took me a few days. Finals coming up so it's been hectic. Orientation is nothing to get your panties in a bunch over. Some instructors and faculty are there in the auditorium. They give you a few handouts, talk to you about the uniform, castlebranch requirements(your background check and Vax info), and tell you nursing school is hard. Clinical start around the 6th week of level 1. I was days, and my clinical site was Northside. If you go to Northside, it is awful and scary and a lot of work. However, you learn so much more there than your homies that go to the rehab places do. It's worth it.
We don't really have "classes" really. Theory and clinical kinda run together. The skills are easy, don't stress them. Pharmacology this semester has been awful. A damn disaster, and I'm an A student.
Level 1 I had Fridays off, level 2 I have Tuesdays off.
As for studying, yes. I've had to completely revamp the way I study. Flash cards that you used for micro and A&P are not going to do the job. There is just too much material. You are no longer memorizing info, you are having to analyze data and then come up with an answer. You have to really understand what is going on. I use concept maps alot, I also hand write all of my notes. I've found handwriting to be faster and better retained. Read. Reaaadddd. Each test this semester contained about 130 pgs of assigned reading. With about 2 weeks in between each test. It's alot. But you have to read. You're going to get ATI books, you'll know what I was talking about come the first week of class, use them. No one used them level 1, until we realized how awesome they were at the end. Buy a fundamental Q&A success book, you won't regret it. I used to try to just get by on homework/studying like 3 days a week, like I did in my prereqs. You have to do more, this semester I started doing homework/studying 6 days a week. At least 3 hours per day, some days much more. Don't worry about the instructor's powerpoints, they're useless for the test. In our prereqs, an instructors PowerPoint was the test, not anymore my friends. My last piece of advice is to do practice questions. Then do them some more. I made a B level 1, because I did not know how to answer an NCLEX style question. Level 2 is much harder, and I have an A...and it is all because I started banging out practice questions and figured out how to answer NCLEX questions.