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  1. Can we address this line of thinking -"We must demolish diploma factories"? The hubris and the arrogance abounds. If we can take anything away from 2020 it is this, the traditional brick and mortar school needs rethought. It no longer serves a purpose, and is not what the future holds in terms of efficiency and sustainability. The original post below this one fails to recognize the actual problem our society faces, that being "traditional universities". These institutions no longer exist to produce a beneficial product, if this was the case we would not have thousands of people demanding loan forgiveness; if the product is sound, why would it need subsidized? The real problem is simply this, universities are now centers to push one-sided ideologies, redistribute wealth through preferenced funding, and ultimately prop up a bankrupt government through 7% interest rate loans. Why do you think programs that could once be finished in 1.5 years, paid for by hospital systems/practices/clinics, now take upwards of 3.5 years, with tuition costs that have went beyond the moon; it makes no sense, even more so when you account for the much discussed provider shortage. These dudes are lining their pockets fraudulently, and it is at the cost of students and subsequently patients. Imagine if banks were doing what FASFA and the universities have been doing for the last 3 decades. People would be in the streets rioting. "Fraudulent business practices" would be the term of the day. Unfortunately, these institutions get a hard pass, mainly due to people like the OP below that feel there is a certain prestige associated with given schools. I live in Western PA, I went to a 3.5 year program that cost me roughly 27k, I would be hard pressed to go to a "respected school" that would cost someone like me +$90k. I passed my boards the same as the OP did, I and I am told, that I do a pretty good job. Ultimately, knowledge is being decentralized at a rapid pace, we would do well to recognize this and stay with the times. I can buy lectures, given by Harvard historians, for $10 on Amazon, hours of content! If Harvard is your thing, why can't we make all these lectures available and free for all? Share the wealth so to say? In the coming future, there will likely no longer be a monopoly on knowledge, as such the current cost of tuition should no longer be defended, and we should leave arrogance of "prestigious institutions" at the door.
  2. allnurses

    Winter 2019

    Version Winter 2019

    The 2019 Winter Issue of the allnurses magazine focuses on the continuous evolution of Nurses and the Nursing profession over the years. In this issue, you can read about how things used to be in days gone by, issues and challenges we are currently dealing with, and what is to come in the future of nursing. Some of the "looking back in time" articles will make you chuckle and may bring back fond memories for the seasoned nurse while the younger generation will wonder how in the world we ever worked wearing white dresses and using archaic devices. Nursing as a Profession: Changes through the Years In this article, the author interviews Rosalee Sites, a nurse who has been part of the changing landscape of nursing over the years. Nursing Uniforms: From Skirts to Scrubs and Beyond Nursing uniforms have changed drastically over the years. Learn about the traditional whites, scrubs, caps, and everything in between. Current Issues in the Nursing Profession and Resolutions for Future Change The demand for qualified nurses is expected to continue to grow. The shift toward value-based patient care and the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires a larger, more diverse, highly educated nursing wo… The Evolution of Nursing Education - Is Today’s Education Preparing Nurses for Tomorrow’s Growing Health Challenges? Since nursing education and training began 150 years ago, it has undergone many changes with debate over the best way to prepare nurses. It will be interesting to see where the next 150 or even just 5… Nursing Career Adventures Nursing continues to evolve and change. We all remember to some extent the way it was “when I graduated from nursing school.” Change occurs at different rates and for different reasons. Allnurses.com … How Often Do Nursing Managers Ask Clinical and Medication Questions During Interviews? Dear Nurse Beth, I have been a Cardiothoracic Surgery Stepdown Nurse for almost 2 years now. My hospital is currently restructuring and eliminating the Stepdown phase of care. Because of this change, … The Dilemma of Multiple Licenses Dear Lorie: I have a license in Indiana for which I have received a reprimand. I just got a complaint filed in Ohio where I also have a license. Can Ohio also take action against my license? Seasoned Nurses - This one is for you Download allnurses MagazineSeasoned nurses are special, not only because of the knowledge they possess and the skills they have mastered, but also for the many changes and advances in medical technolo


  3. Maureen Bonatch MSN

    What Advice Would You Give to Future Nurses?

    The news is often overflowing with articles about nurse burnout, bullying, staff shortages, and questionable compensation. You may have experienced some, or all, of these issues yourself during your nursing career. Maybe enough to make you wonder why you went into nursing in the first place. This may make it difficult to come up with a positive response when someone asks you, “Do you think I should go into nursing?” The issues of inadequate staffing and the significant number of nurses reaching retirement age are a common concern of the nurses today. A continuing influx of nurses into the profession is required to help reduce these staffing issues. Although with a significant number of nurses leaving the profession, it can be helpful to provide advice that is more practical, rather than personal, for someone considering a career in nursing. Don’t Be a Dream CrusherComplaining comes as a natural response to most people, some so much that it’s become a habit. We might not think twice about unburdening all the unsavory things about being a nurse on a willing listener to feel validated. Even if your complaints are justified, this can paint a negative image of the nursing profession. It may potentially deter future nurses before they determine if nursing is a good career choice. Even if it feels like the bad aspects of the job are outweighing the good, consider that the positive benefits of nursing are probably what led you to the profession, and made you stay. Provide Practical AdviceThe profession of nursing continues to be an attractive, growing, career option. One that’s held in high regard and respect by many who consider it the most honest and ethical profession. With an awareness of the challenges that can accompany a nursing career, explain what you feel might be a few key characteristics of a good nurse. That way they can determine if a nursing career would work well for them based on their career goals, personal strengths, weaknesses and their personal life. What Are Some Characteristics of a Good Nurse?Flexibility: Nurses work holidays, weekends and with varying schedules. Sometimes there may be several different shifts in one week or extended hours during one day. Empathy: Nurses must draw upon empathy when caring for patients at their most vulnerable times, or dealing with the challenges of patients that have different views, beliefs or are just difficult to care for.Compassion- Providing compassionate care is at the heart of nursing, no matter what the specialty.Physical endurance- Long shifts spent on your feet providing physical care for patients can take a physical toll, so recommend that they consider their personal tolerance and physical limitations.Attention to detail- Accurate documentation and having a discerning eye to notice changes in patient conditions is essential to provide quality patient care.Excellent Communicator- Nurses work with an increasing variety of disciplines, cultures, and in diverse environments. This requires strong verbal and nonverbal communication skills.Lifelong learner- Healthcare is continuously changing through the use of technology. This increases demands on nurses to continue learning to keep their skills relevant. Emotional stability- The demands of nursing can be stressful, so positive coping mechanisms, prioritizing self-care, and the ability to recognize and address signs of burnout are important.Organized- Stellar organization skills are helpful to juggle the varied demands of a nurse’s usual day and provide quality patient care.See for ThemselvesThese key characteristics are shared by many nurses, although each specialty, and different nursing environments, can come with their own positive and negative attributes. It may be challenging to adequately describe a day in the life of a nurse to ensure a future nurse is entering the profession without blinders. A deeper look into the reality of nursing could be achieved for someone who is uncertain if nursing is the right career choice. What are Some Ways We Can Encourage a Future Nurse?Take an online course Shadow a nurse to observe a usual day Become a certified nursing assistant (CNA) to experience providing direct patient careObtain work in an entry-level job in a healthcare environmentShare Your WisdomThe nursing profession isn’t for everyone, and ultimately the decision is an individual one, but you can help a potential nurse to make the best decision about their career. Instead of chipping away at the fresh face full of idealistic hopes and dreams, allow their enthusiasm. It just might help you remember why you chose nursing in the first place. What Advice Would You Give to a Future Nurse?
  4. What I learned in nursing school is how to set up an IV fluid set, what to do when a patient is exhibiting signs of septic shock, the most intricate details of hundreds of medications, how to give different types of intramuscular injections, and how to titrate oxygen. I learned the best nursing practice measures to prevent infection, how to change a central line dressing, how research drives evidence-based practice, how to complete a head-to-toe physical assessment, how to calculate weight based dosages for pediatric patients, etc. The list goes on and on... But what I really learned in nursing school is how to balance 20 hours of clinical a week with my other classes and a part-time job. I learned how to prepare myself for walking through the hospital doors where I will take care of patients and their families on what may be the worst day of their lives. I learned that listening with open ears can speak more volumes than words and sometimes that is really what my patients need. I learned that my patients want to have a voice, be heard, and be understood. I learned the importance of validation and encouragement. I learned that nursing is extremely difficult but rewarding. I learned how to speak up and advocate for my patients because if I don't, then who will? What I really learned in nursing school is that sometimes what seems like "no big deal" to me can make all the difference. During my medical-surgical rotation, I was taking care of an oncology patient who was receiving chemotherapy and a complicated concoction of medications. After I had completed his physical assessment that morning, I asked if I could get him anything. He told me his bed was making him feel itchy and uncomfortable. Although I figured the itchiness was related to his dry skin from the chemotherapy, I had a few minutes to spare so I ran down to the basement of the hospital to grab special, hypoallergenic sheets for him. While my patient was walking around the unit, I went into his room and did my best to make his bed with the new sheets as perfectly as I possibly could. When he returned to his room and saw his bed all made up for him he got teary-eyed and hugged me. The next day, he told me that he was actually able to sleep for the first time in weeks. Even though this happened two years ago, I remember it because it was the day I learned the true meaning of the saying, "it's the little things." What I really learned in nursing school is that to some, I may be "just a nurse" but to the little toddler who squeezes my hand during scary procedures, I'm a superhero and to the beautiful, elegant lady who spent hours sharing her life stories and wisdom with me while on hospice, I'm an angel. I learned that nursing is extremely challenging but rewarding. I learned that I do not need the significance of my choice of profession to be validated by my peers or by my parents. I learned how to calmly and respectfully answer the question, "You're really smart. Why aren't you becoming a doctor?" I learned that what I'm doing is important and that I have the privilege to make a difference in people's lives every single day. I learned that nursing is science, nursing is art, and nursing is love. What I really learned in nursing school is that I have so much more to learn and although this career I have chosen will never be easy, it will be so, so worth it.
  5. AccelCNL

    Never Give Up on Your Dreams

    When I signed up on this site in 2006 I was at my second college and trying to get into the nursing school there. I was not a successful student at my first college (due to college shock and illness). When I transferred I thought things were finally going to change. However, things got worse. In the space of one semester, I went from feeling faint sometimes to passing out almost every day (and being a well known visitor at the local ER at least 3x a week). My grades were not that great but I was pulling through and applied to nursing schools and I was repeatedly denied. Eventually, I left that school due to chronic syncope and took a semester off and moved back home. In Fall 2009, I transferred to a school that allowed me to be a commuter student. Despite being the sickest I was in life (at that point), I was determined to do well and decided to redo all my science prereqs while completing my BA in History. I got a 4.0 my first semester and continued on that trend. I was set to graduate in Spring 2011. However, the day of my APII final I passed out on campus and had to go to the hospital. That weekend (on Mother's Day) I had a stroke. Thankfully I did not have any lasting effects due to a quick medical response. I basically had to pull out that semester and take Incompletes for all my classes. That Summer I eventually began to show sign of epilepsy and by the end of the Summer, I was having grand mal seizures at least twice a week. However, I refused to stop my life. That Summer I attended an intense language immersion program I received a scholarship for. I got sick up there several times, but I refused to let my illness define me. I went back to school in Fall 2011 and graduated in Spring 2012. I graduated magna cum laude with a GPA of 3.79. However, despite having the GPA, at this point, I could not pass the physical for nursing school due to uncontrolled epilepsy (despite being 3 different meds). I decided to go another route and considered MPH programs. However, after graduation, I got so sick that I was literally housebound. I was having a seizure ( all types) practically every day, several times a day. I was extremely unhappy and I decided to take my medical issue into my own hands and found a second opinion. Eventually, it was found out that my issues were caused by a hormone imbalance that I was diagnosed with as a teenager that became severe as an adult. However, sometimes people cannot see the forest through the trees, and my doctors became very tunnel visioned. It took a new doctor to find the issue. Today, I am completely healthy. I have a full-time job. I finally got my driver's license. But most of all, I will be starting nursing school in the Fall. I will be moving to attend a direct entry MSN/CNL program that is 21 months long. I hope to become an adult acute NP one day and maybe become a CRNA. Sometimes, when life happens it seems like our dreams will never come to fruition. However, keep on going and NEVER give up. It took me 8 years to get to this point but I don't regret the journey. It made me a better and stronger woman. Just never give up.
  6. dogmombyday

    Dear Nursing Student

    I have the somewhat unique position of being in the no-man's land between nursing school and real world nursing: I have a whopping 3 months of nursing experience under my belt. Well, 2.5, but I can round up, okay? A few months ago, I was a note-writing, clinical-attending, nclex-studying student. Now I'm a full-fledged RN, which is sort of blowing. As such, I had a few thoughts to share with you. First, like I said, don't let others bring you down. You have enough to worry about--you're learning to be healers!--without concerning yourself with the opinions of others. There will be nurses, at clinicals and maybe even some on this site, who seem to have been born nurses...and I don't mean that it was their destiny, but that they seem unable to remember going through what you are now going through, and they definitely seem unable to relate. Go to clinical and try your hardest anyway. If someone makes you feel badly for being a student, store that away and use it as motivation when you need it. Prove them wrong. That was honestly my biggest struggle in school--what if so-and-so doesn't think I can be a nurse?! So-and-so's opinion is not the be all, end all of who will be a good nurse. Second, don't let yourself get too wrapped up in who got what grade. I managed to pull off pretty solid grades on most of my exams, but I remember getting down because I was quietly excited about my 90% while the girl next to me was telling anyone who would listen about her 98%. Try your hardest, but realize that answering every question right is not what you study for. You study so that you can care for people, which is not something everyone gets the chance to do. Third, jump in at clinical. I missed out on trying out new skills because I was terrified of doing it wrong. Clinical is a time for you to get hands-on learning. Meaning, you can't learn it if you don't get hands-on. It's scary, yes, but it's also just about the safest, most protected environment to learn it in. Your instructor will appreciate the initiative you're taking, and your patient will appreciate that you're taking the time to learn how to do things the right way. Just try it. There are few feelings that match what it's like to get your first successful IV start. (I'm pretty certain I squealed and had a smile on my face for the next hour or two). And if you don't get it the first try, ask what you could've done better or where you went wrong. That's what your instructor is there for. And if your instructor isn't around when you need an answer, try asking a nurse on that floor. Some of the best tips I received during clinical were from people other than my instructor. Finally, don't set your mind too much on what speciality you'll go into after school. Otherwise, you may run the risk of painting yourself into a corner. Or, you may just be flat out wrong. I can tell you, I swore up and down I would work in pediatrics because "adults weren't for me". Guess what? I work in the ICU and have yet to see anyone under age 25 on my floor. Guess what else? I have never felt happier or more fulfilled in my work. That being said, don't let anyone tell you that new nurses can't work in this or that specialty. There aren't set rules for most areas, and there are usually exceptions. My hospital just hired its first new grads in L&D and it's going swimmingly. If it's your dream, go for it. The worst that can happen is a no, and you can try again until you end up where you're supposed to be. Nursing school isn't for everyone, that's simply how it is. But, if it is for you, then THIS is for you. Sincerely, A shiny new nurse
  7. Some assert that there are some pretty distinct differences in the capabilities, responsibilities and patient outcomes that come with each educational milestone. It's no secret that more voices in the field are citing those differences as a driving force behind the push to convince more RNs to pursue BSN degrees. But are the benefits as clear-cut as they've been made out to be? Here's what we found from doing some research on what has been written. The push for more BSNsInitiatives like "80 by '20" and "BSN in 10" have become hot topics in the nursing world, but they're often misunderstood. Here's a quick breakdown of the differences: 80 by '20 is a call-to-action that requires 80 percent of nurses to hold bachelor's degrees by 2020. This initiative has been put in place by the Institute of Medicine in tandem with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.BSN in 10 is a proposed policy that would require new nurses to obtain their BSN within 10 years of entering the field if they wish to continue practicing. The initiative originated with the New York State Nurses Association and has received support from the House of Delegates of the American Nurses Association.The motivation for initiatives like these is threefold. Proponents hope to see improvements in patient care; increased prospects and longevity in nursing careers; and efficiencies in the ability of healthcare facilities to manage increasing patient loads. It hasn't taken long for other healthcare organizations to align with these commitments. Many hospitals may be drawn by the motivation to uphold high standards of patient care and professional development in order to achieve magnet status, while others can't seem to ignore the question, "Do bachelor's degrees really save more lives?" The link between education & mortality ratesHealthcare organizations and hospital leadership continually recognize the contributions made by nurses of all educational levels. But many have acknowledged reports that suggest qualifications impact mortality rates. What does the data say? Studies suggest a correlation between patient mortality rates and the level of education achieved by their nurses. A 2014 study supported by the National Institutes of Health reported a 7 percent decline in patient mortality for each 10 percent increase in the number of nurses who hold bachelor's degrees. Put simply, nurses with more education appear to have better patient outcomes. The study brought the conversation a step further by comparing patient outcomes with nursing workload. Hospitals in which 60 percent of nurses hold bachelor's degrees and care for six or fewer patients saw a 33 percent decrease in patient mortality when compared to hospitals in which only a third of nurses hold a bachelor's degree and care for up to eight patients. This suggests a significant decrease in the number of patient deaths for nurses who have more education and also care for fewer patients. The data suggests that healthcare organizations recognize the need to not only increase RN qualifications, but also increase the number of nurses available to care for patients. The added benefits of earning a BSNBecause many healthcare facilities are prioritizing a bachelor's level education for RN candidates, the number job prospects for nurses with bachelor's degrees has seen a huge surge in recent years. In fact, Burning-Glass was used to identify more than a million RN job postings from the past year and found that candidates holding a bachelor's degree qualified for 78 percent of them, while diploma and associate degree holders qualified for just 53 percent.1 The prospects are also greatly increased for RNs hoping to progress into advanced nursing positions later in their careers. For example, we examined nearly 100,000 nurse manager job postings from the last 12 months. The data revealed that candidates with bachelor's degrees qualified for 70 percent of the jobs available, while associate degree holders qualified for just 25 percent of them.2 But the job vacancies don't tell the only story here. There is also increased earning potential for bachelor's degree holders. Nurse manager candidates with bachelor's degrees can expect a $7,000 increase in mean annual salary.3 Are BSNs worth more than the hype?The initiatives in place to encourage more RNs to earn bachelor's degrees are hard to ignore, but there are two sides to every coin. Some professionals are pushing back despite support from leading healthcare organizations. It's a debate that continues to rage throughout the comment streams of nursing blogs across the Internet. So what do you think? Are there tangible benefits to a nursing workforce with a higher percentage of bachelor's degrees? Is the jump from RN-BSN worth it? Share your thoughts in the comments below! Sponsored by Rasmussen College Is RN-BSN Worth It? 9 Reasons to Level Up. Earn Your BSN Degree - Your Way
  8. As I think about the many graduates who walked the stage this year at Chamberlain, I offer some of the following reflections on what I've learned about continuing education. 1. There is no statute of limitations on going back to school.Part of my reasoning for completing a Ph.D. at 64 is that I want to continue to work as long as I'm able. There are people in their 70s who earn degrees simply for the sense of accomplishment. It's never too late. 2. If you want to return to school, you can find the time.Right now you may be thinking, "That's crazy, I have no time." But I've seen how busy people find the time to do what is important to them. If we think about the number of hours we waste in a week watching television or other like activities, we may find that we can carve out the needed time to do school work. To meet your educational goals, you will need to prioritize your time and exercise discipline. Figure out what works for you and find a way to fit it in. It's a sacrifice, but one you will never regret. In my second doctoral program, I had to find time on weekends because my position requires long workdays. Although I began taking one course at a time, I wanted the degree sooner so I doubled my course load halfway through the program. It meant that I had to work on school almost every weekend. When I needed to make a push to finish my dissertation, I took a week's vacation time to do the final writing and editing. The dissertation took a year and a half, during which time my husband saw little of me. Which brings me to my next piece of advice: 3. Find a support structure that works for you.My husband understood the importance of the degree and did what he could to help, including taking on some household duties. During my first doctoral program, I had a baby and worked full-time, which meant I had to rely on my mother and other family members. 4. Set your goals as early as possible, and set your sights high.Think of all that's available in nursing and what you, as a professional, want and need to accomplish. Someone once said, "Make no small plans, as the heart is stirred by setting big goals and making them happen." 5. If you've got momentum, keep going.We have students at Chamberlain who go from earning a degree to the next because they're in the groove. If you know that's what you want and now is the right time in your life, go for it! 6. Treat going to school like a job.I found that if I set myself a work schedule much like a job, I was much more successful and efficient in getting my school work done. On weekends I went to my office at 8 a.m. and worked the full day. Because the courses in my program were online, I was able to schedule the times when I planned to log in and complete the online assignments. I set goals to finish those assignments at the beginning of each week, in case they took longer than anticipated. Decide how much you're going to accomplish in each work session and pace yourself. 7. If you fall off track, you can get back on.I left my first doctoral program without completing my dissertation and went in a completely different direction before returning to health care. I finally earned a Ph.D. more than three decades after setting out to achieve that goal. The second time around, I watched many of my classmates fall off track. Life changes; priorities shift and shift again. Suddenly, it's the right time to resume. I lost ground with the time off, but when I got back on track, it was with new resolve and a focus dictated by the new direction my career had taken. 8. Explore all your educational options.Certificates are another way to continue your education. During my midlife entrepreneurial career, I took a year-long program at the University of Illinois and received a certificate in business administration and entrepreneurial studies. At Chamberlain, we offer a Graduate Certificate Program in Nursing Education and Nursing Informatics. Post-graduate fellowships, such as the nurse-educator fellowships available through the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation, are another option. 9. If you want to be a leader, you need to continue your education.The most compelling reasons for earning a degree are job advancement and career opportunity. Although I didn't need a master's degree for the job I had at the time, I decided to earn one - I knew it would open doors. My nursing diploma equipped me to provide patient care, but I also wanted to be a leader and a teacher. In most places in healthcare, you need at least a BSN degree to be a clinical supervisor, such as unit leader, and an advanced degree to go beyond that. Before I entered a BSN program, I knew plenty about patient care but little about my profession. As I continued my educational journey, a world I knew nothing about opened to me - a world of nursing scholars, theorists and professional organizations. You too can enter a new world filled with new insights, individuals, ideas and experiences. No matter your age, time constraints or setbacks - you can do it. You can build momentum, find support through friends and family and stay on track. I encourage everyone to embrace lifelong learning and to achieve your educational goals no matter what.
  9. When I first started nursing school, people in my class were very resourceful. We looked up a lot of the information that was thrown at us. When I say "look up," I mean searching it online verbatim. There was no real credible information online then, and I think we really had to dig deeper. The most important resources we had then were former nurses, nurses who are in the workforce. Now, I am here to help you narrow down some of the ins and outs of nursing school. It really helps to know about what other people went through to make your own journey through nursing school worth it. Here are some of the things that I think is worth knowing before starting nursing school. Remember, this is just the beginning and you are building on all the knowledge that you will be learning from pre-nursing classes until your last block in nursing! Math BasicsYes, people's lives are dependent on our calculations specially if pediatrics is where you want to go. Don't panic! Knowing the basics in math such as multiplication, division, fractions, and canceling similar units as a beginner is the easiest go to when it comes to math. They have a term for it... its called Dimensional Analysis! Never miss a math equation on any of your nursing exams. Also, memorize basic conversions such as kilograms to pounds. Memorizing the basics helps a lot of nursing students get through blocks 1 to 4! Cement it! Retention is key! Now do not mistaken memorization versus critical thinking... We will tackle that in a different post! Medical JargonIn the beginning, you will definitely find yourself stuck in a lot of abbreviations you need to get used to hearing and the quicker you learn them the faster your comprehension will be when it comes to learning the world of nursing! Your instructors do not have time to stop and spoon feed every single term - there's just so much to learn in this field but don't be afraid to ask if a certain terminology or abbreviation does not make sense at all. Trust me, BIBA... took a while for me to figure that out since I work on the floor! BIBA means brought in by ambulance. Exams and SkillsNursing students' competency is tested two ways: skills and written exams. The written exams are weighted heavily versus the skills. Think of it this way, the written test involves critical thinking questions that involve knowing the ins and outs of the skills. So listen well and practice! Clean versus sterile technique is a good skill to learn at the very beginning! You'll understand better in practice... everything's better with practice. Invest the time and clock in those hours in the skills lab! Learning Skills and Building Blocks.What's the best way to study? I don't think there is one specific way to achieve a successful study session. So get this, I was so overwhelmed with the materials in front of me, I have index cards, hard bound books, highlighters, my laptop, pens and papers everywhere - I was not going anywhere until I started typing. I was just typing away the notes I wrote down in lectures in reference to powerpoints and instructor points. The process of typing the words I wrote down on paper helped me retain the information more than once and it takes me back to the lecture all over again. The main takeaway is that the process of taking the time to write notes however is best helps a lot with retaining the information. Retaining the information is key in nursing school! You will not only see one topic or idea once. You're building on it!
  10. Nurses are awesome...but you probably already knew that. What many do not know is that these amazing health care providers can come with several different levels of preparedness when it comes to higher education, degrees, and specialty certifications. While all are required to pass a state board exam and maintain licensure status, nurses can hold degrees anywhere from a diploma or LVN/LPN (Licensed Vocational Nurse/Licensed Practical Nurse) to a PhD (Doctor of Nursing Philosophy) or ND (Doctor of Nursing) and can function in a variety of roles thereafter. Providers at every level are equipped with the basic foundations necessary to provide quality care paired with extensive clinical knowledge. Because healthcare is a fast moving field with evidence based practice changes implemented daily, more is needed to provide up to date quality care. The technology, bedside routine, research and documentation are being updated and upgraded constantly. It can be difficult to keep up with the latest professional trends and policies in the healthcare industry. Ensuring you are following the most current practice can be vital to your patients and their healthcare journey. Returning to school for an updated education can help nurses stay current and obtain valuable resources to continue that pattern in the future. Knowledge is power! Continuing education is mandatory for maintaining licensure...and for good reason. It holds nurses to a professional standard of staying current in their field. Higher education provides this and more. Rather than taking a short online course for continuing education credit on a topic specific to your current area of expertise, taking a college course can potentially expand your mind into areas of previous unfamiliarity. This may prove helpful for future patient interactions. The knowledge obtained may equip you to better serve a potentially complex patient under your care. Each class can expand your already immense knowledge of healthcare such as learning a cutting edge treatment modality, management style, or research method. Healthcare professionals are learning more and more about how patient outcomes can be affected by a multitude of factors. For example, anything from nursing leadership presence and nursing satisfaction to the use of electronic medical records and work environment can play a role. With so many moving parts in a patient-centered atmosphere it is important to be well- armed with as much beneficial information as possible to ensure those outcomes remain positive. Increasing your supply of knowledge and clinical resources can only help at the bedside. Obtaining higher education can also increase personal satisfaction. Reaching your education goal feels good! And who doesn't love a smart, happy, satisfied nurse? Utilizing your newly acquired knowledge and seeing the positive effects on patient satisfaction and outcome, also raises nursing satisfaction. Nurses who seek out advanced knowledge of clinically relevant information may be better able to advocate for a vast variety of patient needs. The more you know, the more you will be able to offer your patient in terms of advocacy and patient education. Patients are coming for care during a difficult time and may not even know the rights available to them. This is where the highly educated nurse comes in to bridge the gap between the patient and the system. Seeking the best education can lead to providing the best possible care for your patients. Obtaining a higher degree can leave you feeling more empowered, prepared and accomplished. Staying current in a fast changing field such as healthcare remains a challenge for all but can be a bit easier when armed with the tools and resources higher education can provide. Are you interested in obtaining a higher level of education? If so, you owe it to yourself and your patients to explore more! The potential benefits are plentiful in a sea of opportunity.
  11. Are you a registered nurse who wishes to further your education by earning a graduate degree in nursing? Numerous colleges and universities offer online MSN degree programs with specialty areas in nursing education and leadership / management. Furthermore, multiple schools in the United States offer several types of advanced practice nursing programs for professionals who are interested in becoming nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse anesthetists and nurse midwives. However, a number of RNs want to earn the MSN degree, but have absolutely no interest in becoming educators, managers or advanced practice registered nurses. What if you want to pursue higher education in nursing by studying a specialty area other than nursing education or leadership / management? What if you do not want to become an APRN? Nurses who want to earn a graduate degree with a focus area other than nursing education or leadership / management may wish to look closely into the comprehensive MSN program that West Texas A&M University offers. West Texas A&M University's comprehensive MSN program is offered completely online to meet the unique needs of busy professionals across the US. Select from one of thirteen exciting specialty areas Nursing Informatics - specialty that blends the fields of computer science, nursing and information technology all into one Quality Improvement - specialty comprised of continual processes that result in improvement of healthcare services Case Management - specialty that involves collaborative coordination of services and options to assist in meeting the patient's needs Utilization Management - determination of medical necessity of healthcare services by health insurance companies Clinical Coordinator - nurse leader who works collaboratively to facilitate the provision of nursing care services Holistic Nursing - specialty that promotes nursing care of the patient as a whole through nourishment of the mind, body and spirit Patient / Unit Educator - professional who devises, maintains and improves clinical and educational skills of unit nursing staff Nursing Management - process of influencing a healthcare organization and its members to achieve desirable results School Nursing - specialty that promotes the health, advancement and well-being of students in a school setting Community Nursing - specialty that promotes the health and well-being of patients in various community settings Instructor, School of Nursing - professional who formulates curricula, plans lessons and teaches student nurses Patient Advocate - professional who advocates for the varying healthcare needs of patients in a healthcare setting Clinical Specializations (pediatric, gerontologic, acute care, etc.) In addition to the comprehensive MSN completion program for applicants who already possess the bachelor of science degree in nursing, West Texas A&M University also offers an accelerated RN-to-MSN bridge program for nurses with previously-earned associate degrees in nursing who wish to attain graduate level education sooner rather than later. So if you want to earn a MSN degree by studying a specialty area other than nursing education or leadership / management, the online comprehensive MSN degree program at West Texas A&M University might meet your special needs. On the other hand, what if you do want to become an APRN? West Texas A&M University also offers a hybrid Family Nurse Practitioner MSN program for those who want to be FNPs someday. RESOURCES West Texas A&M University: Nursing Graduate Program
  12. sl703

    We Are Star Throwers.

    Becoming a nurse is not simply that, it is evolving into a full bodied advocate for the health and wellness of all humanity. Since a young age, I developed a keen perception for the care of other people and their surroundings.Whether I was the grounding stone of family conflict, rescuing snails from the desert heat, or saving a fallen flower bud, I had a purpose.Without consciously deciding it, I had already expressed the infant quirks of being a 'nurse' through out childhood. Once I matured into adolescence I soon realized that my personality trait of 'humanitarian' resonated a much deeper and soul satisfying destiny of healing. From gaining more experience into the big pool of life,the layers of what would push me to become a nurse unraveled. I began witnessing the realism of suffering within the world, within my own backyard. Regardless of class, age, gender, or upbringing, we all will encounter tragedy or trauma that will land us in the presence of a health care professional; and I wanted to be that professional. The thought of "I want to be a hero in the strife of one persons' worst day ever, every day..." flickered through my mind often. Upon graduating from high school, I made it my life's mission to not only become a nurse, but to craft my self into warrior so that I can have the strength to touch others. With persistence of a dream in tow, I successfully completed all my classes to be given the opportunity of student nurse, now here I am. I do not know yet, what it is to be a nurse, but I firmly believe that I am on a journey to unveil the beautiful artistry of this field. Every experience onward will expand my ability to heal the sick and ultimately unlock a new sense of meaning and being within my own life; through selfless action we discover hidden avenues of light within ourselves. A nurses' aptitude for restoring health are transcendental skills, beginning with curing physical ailments, and ending with resonating a greater sense of spiritual vitality to the patient. Living within a world that is bombarded with messages of despair, suffering, negativity, weakness,and self-destruction it becomes almost pseudo-natural to feel defeated rather than motivated to become the candle holder for all the people whom need our help. However, through adversity there is always one simple story I keep in mind, "The Starfish Story",this story pertains directly to nursing care, and spreads all throughout life, bringing with it the message that what we do does make a difference; we behold the power to change circumstances, and to ignite positive impact. Times of vulnerability and distress become the ultimate tests within life, including nursing, but for what is first seen as an ordeal can easily be turned into an opportunity once we take the steps of courage forward. "The Starfish Story" is a quiet yet foundational memorandum of integrity and perseverance that will be carried forward within me throughout nursing practice: Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work. One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, so he walked faster to catch up. As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young girl, and that what she was doing was not dancing at all. The young girl was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects and throwing them into the ocean. He came closer still and called out, "Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?" The young girl paused, looked up and replied, "Throwing starfish into the ocean." "I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" asked the somewhat startled wise man. To this the young girl replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in, they'll die." Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, "But, young girl, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can't possibly make a difference!" As if she hadn't heard, the young girl bent down, picked up yet another starfish and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, she turned, smiled and said, "It made a difference to that one!" - Adapted from The Star Thrower by Loren C. Eiseley
  13. Ashley Hay, BSN, RN

    "What made you get into this field?"

    I grew up realizing life is not necessarily promised to all. My Dad was lucky to be alive - beating the odds for osteosarcoma in the early 80's was rare. Sure, I saw his struggle everyday. He was a right above the knee amputee. Not something I took lightly, but I'd also never known him any different. Even seeing pictures of him before his surgery still strikes me a bit strange. That didn't look like my Dad. My parents still keep in touch with his favorite nurse - over 30 years later. That stuck with me. What an impression she must have made. What could a bond like that feel like on the other end? What was it like, providing support to young newlyweds during such a difficult (and potentially bleak) time? I wanted to be that person. I wanted to know what that level of rapport felt like. I wanted to be there for people in their time of need and help them through their crisis - just like that nurse had done for my parents so many years ago. I wanted to connect with people. I worked many odd jobs over the years starting in my early teens. I was a cashier, waitress, worked in a laundromat, tanning salon, law office. But the two jobs I loved the most were babysitting and working in a day care center. I liked earning the parents trust and really enjoyed spending time with the kids. Going through high school I had big ambitions and knew I wanted to end up somehow in the realm of pediatrics. But there was more to that story. I had always been a sick kid. Struggling with frequent infections and illnesses. I frequently think back to a nurse I had during my first overnight stay on a pediatric ward at a New Jersey hospital. I remember her so clearly. Her name was Beatrix. With such a beautiful and unusual name, how could I forget it? Her care and kindness has stayed with me - nearly 20 years later. It was the small things she did that made an impression. She was on the day shift - when she came to do my morning assessment I told her I hadn't slept. She asked if the nurses station was too loud (my room was directly across the hall). I told her the noise was okay, I was...afraid of the dark. I thought she might laugh at me. She didn't bat an eye. Before her shift ended, she came by again - leaving my bathroom light on with the door slightly ajar. "Leave this on, it will help you sleep." This seems like such a small gesture, but it made quite the impression on my ten year old self. She remembered! My exposure to pediatric nurses continued throughout my young adult life. Because of a newly diagnosed illness in high school I had need for regular infusions (and nowhere else to receive them other than the Peds Onc unit). I was lucky enough to observe these nurses first hand. The patients, nurses and families all seemed to have quite the symbiotic relationship. I had found my calling. I was going to try my hardest to do it, despite a few setbacks. In high school I thought maybe I wanted to go pre-med and become a doctor. My guidance counselor quickly dismissed the idea and told me I would be wasting my time and should choose another path. I took a week to think about my options. I came back and said, "I'd actually really like to be a nurse". She told me there was "no way... just apply undecided". My grades were fine but I had missed a ton of my junior and senior year. High school can be hard enough to navigate but especially so when you're dealing with a chronic illness. In the end, that counselor shaped my future path. It was the best (and obviously, the worst) advice I ever got. Lucky for me, I'm stubborn. I'm the type of person that loves to prove you wrong. Off to nursing school I went. Well, that is after going to a large state school & dropping out after a semester. Longer path (and extra student loans) but my nursing journey had begun! I met countless patients through nursing school and many more once I started working as an RN. So many of them stick out in my mind on a regular basis. My first patient, my first death, all the big hugs from tiny patients and the thank you's from parents or spouses. Laughter, joy, sadness, comfort and so many more emotions come to mind thinking about all I've experienced with my patients over the years. Nursing is an incredible profession. It has taught me many life lessons I can't imagine learning elsewhere. We all have our own stories, setbacks and struggles. It's important to remember how far we have each come, both personally and professionally. Everyone has taken a journey to get here. We are now the nurses - not just those aspiring to be. Today or someday soon, you may be the one nursing students look up to, the one less experienced nurses ask for help, the one influencing a child's memory of healthcare. No matter how many years you have under your belt, our actions as nurses today can inspire our young patients to be our replacements tomorrow. Let's be sure to leave a lasting impression.
  14. Download allnurses Magazine Since nursing education and training began 150 years ago, it has undergone many changes. Nursing education has evolved from hospital-based apprenticeships to college and university-based programs. Along the way, there has been much debate about the best way to prepare nurses. Hospital setting or academic setting? ADN or BSN? Today multiple educational pathways for entry into nursing exist. Nurses can receive their education and training in nursing education programs at the diploma, ADN, baccalaureate or even master’s level. NCLEX One thing that is agreed upon is that, regardless of educational preparation, all eligible graduates take the same licensing exam, called the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX). Prior to the NCLEX, nurses took the State Board Test Pool Examination. The National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) renamed the test to the NCLEX in 1982. The first version was a paper and pencil-proctored test. Candidates had to wait months to take it, as it was only offered twice a year. Nurses from that time recall traveling to huge testing centers where they would hear “Pencils down. Booklets closed” and test for two days. Under the direction of the NCSBN, the exam has since evolved to computerized adaptive testing. Diploma Programs In the year 1873 three nursing educational programs—the New York Training School at Bellevue Hospital, the Connecticut Training School at the State Hospital (later renamed New Haven Hospital) and the Boston Training School at Massachusetts General Hospital—began operations. It’s generally acknowledged that organized, professional nurse education in the United States began with these 3 programs. Diploma programs all, they were called “Nightingale” programs because they were based on Florence Nightingale’s teachings. Aspiring nurses trained in hospitals under an apprentice-like system. Graduates of diploma programs recall being trained to stand up and offer their chair whenever a doctor came into the nurse’s station. Labor was exchanged for training, room, and board. Student nurses provided the patient care, sometimes supervised, sometimes not. Hospital servitude was the first priority and education was secondary. In time, it was realized that the needs of the hospital trumped the needs of the nursing students. In other words, if patient care was needed on a surgical unit, the student nurses would forfeit their planned Peds training to provide care where it was needed, on the surgical unit. Likewise, classes were canceled if nurses were needed on the floors. Diploma programs still exist but are far less common than ADN or BSN programs. BSN Programs After WWII some forward-thinking leaders began to promote moving nursing education from hospitals and into universities. Nurse leaders argued for an educated workforce that would adhere to practice standards. Hospitals opposed the change, fearing the loss of free labor. At the same time, patient care was becoming more complex. Intensive care units became more common in hospitals, requiring greater nursing expertise. Nurses now needed a theoretical base to their practice. However, the four-year nursing programs were not able to turn out enough nurses to meet the nation’s demand. ADN Programs and Role Differentiation Meanwhile, as an economic fix, community college programs began offering ADN programs in the 1950s, which seemed a happy compromise and became a popular track. ADN programs supplied large numbers of nurses, relieving the nursing shortage. Students without access to four-year educations could still earn a nursing degree. It was originally thought that ADN nurses would be “technical” nurses working under the supervision of BSN or “professional” nurses but hospitals never differentiated practice based on educational preparation. As a result, Diploma, ADN, and BSN prepared nurses all have the same role and responsibilities in clinical practice. The RN license, and not educational preparation, drives the practice role of the RN. BSN vs. ADN Entry Level Degree In 1964 the American Nurses Association stated that nurses should all be prepared at the baccalaureate level. This began a deep and bitter divide within the profession between ADN and BSN prepared nurses that continues to this day. In 1982, the National League in Nursing (NLN) supported the BSN as the minimum educational level for entry-level nurses. With much debate, many other organizations adopted the same position over the next 3 decades. However, in the 1990s, concerns over a nursing shortage pushed the argument to the background. In 2010, the Institute for Medicine (IOM) issued a statement that 80% of all nurses should hold a BSN by 2020. New York and New Jersey followed with a “BSN in 10” law requiring nurses to obtain their BSN within 10 years of licensure, but to date, there is still not a national, standard educational entry level. In most recent years, employers themselves have begun to require BSN prepared nurses, taking the debate out of the hands of nurses and nursing organizations and into the marketplace. Magnet hospitals employ a higher percentage of BSN nurses. Advanced Practice Today there are a number of masters level programs including clinical nurse specialists, nurse practitioners, midwives, anesthetists, clinical nurse leaders (CNL). In addition, there are doctoral programs that prepare nurses to influence healthcare policy and assume advanced leadership roles. Accreditation Established in 1893 and called the American Society of Superintendents of Training Schools for Nurses until 1912, the National League for Nursing Education was one of the first professional nursing organizations. The purpose of the National League for Nursing Education was to establish and maintain a universal standard of training for nursing, released as the first Standard Curriculum for Schools of Nursing in 1917. Accreditation is a voluntary, self-regulatory process. The Accreditation Commissions for Education in Nursing (ACEN) accredits diploma, associates, bachelors, and master’s nursing education programs. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) accredits only bachelor and master’s level nursing education programs In 1952 the National League for Nursing Education and the Association for Collegiate Schools of Nursing joined together to become what is now known as the National League for Nursing (NLN). Accreditation of nursing schools was the purpose of the newly formed NLN. Challenges The primary problem with nursing education now is the gap between school and practice. Nursing students lack sufficient clinical experience to function independently. Residency programs help to close the gap, but residency programs are not mandated or regulated. One hospital might orient its new grads for 4 weeks, another for 16 weeks. Residency programs follow a quasi-medical model where new grads are supervised and supported for a period of time before practicing independently. Career advancement requires a BSN or higher degree. Universities and colleges must work together for a seamless transition to academically higher education. Mobility programs facilitate articulation and transition from one nursing degree to a higher nursing degree, in which ADN prepared nurses return to school and obtain their BSN or masters degrees. Fortunately, many online programs provide easy access for the adult learner. The Future It’s interesting to see where the next 150 or even just 50 years will take us. Will educational preparation drive practice differentiation? Will nursing adopt a formalized and standard residency status for new graduates? What is known is that healthcare is changing rapidly and nursing operates in a contextual environment of society, regulations, and reimbursement. Nurses will be an important part of the change and assume new roles in managing and providing our nation’s care. Education must prepare nurses who can practice effectively and lead effectively.
  15. For some nurses, continuing their education is the logical next step in their career. While all nurses possess a license, there are several options to choose from regarding education. A practicing RN may have a diploma, ADN or BSN degree and obtain them in a number of ways. From there, some may choose to gain clinical experience then move on to a graduate program and obtain a MSN degree (which has several possible specialties) or continue on and pursue a doctorate in nursing. There are many routes to choose from including accelerated programs for each level. There are a world of opportunities that come with advancing your degree. However, for others the decision may not be so simple. There are many factors to consider such as finances, availability and future career pursuits. Life events may alter a chosen path and career goals can change. Could going back to school be realistic for you? Becoming a nurse takes an enormous amount of dedication and hard work and it doesn't end with landing your first job. Nurses at all levels of education deservedly have a lot of pride for their earned title and work. With that said, the benefits of additional education are not exclusive to those working away from the bedside. While it is still very possible to obtain an RN license with an associate degree or diploma, these programs are becoming harder to find in recent years. Many hospitals and healthcare systems now list a bachelor's degree as a mandatory or preferred level of education. Each credit taken only increases your already vast knowledge base of patient care and can potentially change future patient outcomes; learning a new treatment modality, management style or research method. Going back to school can open your mind to other areas of nursing, possibly seeing a different specialty with a new level of interest and a fresh perspective. It can also provide the opportunity to meet new people and network within your profession. Maybe you don't see yourself going back to school right now and that's okay. It can be easy to put the decision on the back burner and assume you will get to it eventually. However, nurses know better than most that life can change quickly and with little advance notice. Seeking higher education now may serve a future personal lifestyle need or career desire and can allow for casting a wider net of opportunity down the road. In the ever-changing world of healthcare there's no such thing as knowing too much or being too prepared. It can take years to master one particular area of healthcare, if ever. Keeping up with new developments in medicine everyday can prove difficult. New technologies, improved delivery systems and changes to evidence based practice all require frequent shifts in care methods. Not only can higher education prepare you clinically with updated information on best practice, it can also provide additional resources to refer back to while on the job. Having a working knowledge of where and how to find current information on specific patient cases can be an incredibly useful tool and potentially change a treatment course or outcome. If you love taking care of patients, going back to school does not have to change that career constant. It can offer a different way to interact and connect with them. There are many nursing positions that prefer or require degrees and still maintain direct patient contact. For example, a bachelor's prepared nurse most certainly can deliver bedside care and bring additional knowledge to many clinical situations. A master's prepared nurse could be a patient educator or nurse practitioner, both positions having a prominent impact on everyday patient care. There are many examples and even more possibilities in the field of nursing. To find what interests you most, explore your options. Going back to school is no small decision and there are many outside factors to keep in mind. However, obtaining a higher degree does not have to take you away from the thing you love the most... taking care of patients. If returning to school is the right choice for you the benefits are plentiful; preparing you for future career endeavors and providing additional clinical knowledge allowing for delivery of the best possible care. Take a moment today and ask yourself, "Could going back to school be for me?"
  16. The beginning, that moment when you say yes. I am not talking about saying "yes to the dress" or saying "yes" when proposed to. I am talking about the "yes" we say when we ask ourselves "Am I going to try and get into nursing school?". Yes. I am not going to try though, I AM going to get into nursing school. A magical "yes" might not come to everyone though. As someone in her early 30's going to school with a majority of 18-25 year olds, my very "straight forward with a dash of humor" personality has had me ask multiple people (again, mostly younger) why they are going to school. The average answer? "Well I was thinking about going into nursing." You "think"? They normally reply with "oh, what about you?". My reply "I AM going to nursing school, just have to finish these prerequisites first though *wink*" I'm on a dead straight course. No stopping. No "I just have to pass this class". I am the crazy lady that MUST have A's and if I think I will get a "B" on a test, well I'll sit there looking like my puppy just died until the professor hands me back my test with an "A" on it. Am I OCD? A perfectionist? Ha! No. But I know what I want, and have been working so hard to get it. I live in San Diego where getting into a nursing program is cut throat, and you essentially have to be "the best of the best of the best sir!" to get in (though at work, I have plenty of nursing students that I work with that leave me thinking "if they can get in... well I sure as hell better get in"). There has not been one thing in my life (other then maybe my husband and kids) that I have ever been so sure on. Am I the only one? Lately I feel that way. What I love about allnurses is that there are stories of people like me. Though I may not be surrounded with peers with the same mindset, I know I can come online and find others with the same mindset. "Me" being a domestic engineer for the past 11 years, supporting my husbands military career, and raising 2 wonderful kids. We are finally in a duty station long enough, and the kids are old enough, that I can actually go back to school, and chase down my dreams. When I started this post, I thought I would write about dealing with the "hard work", but instead as I type, I feel like I've just walked up to the starting line, the lights are bright, the crowd is loud, I settle into position and look up. I look straight ahead and fade out the noise, fade out those around me, and see only my destination. I breathe to release tension, and to help lower my heart rate. "I will not stop. I will go all the way. I have only one goal. I did not show up to not start. I did not show up to quit. I showed up to go ALL THE WAY" So essentially, if you were sitting in the bleachers of a high school stadium, you would see me hauling *** down the track. With no one beside me because I am not really a sprinter, but I just showed up to the track for the the hell of it. You would probably be sitting next to a friend and lean over and say "That lady looks a little intense", and hopefully your friend would reply "Yeah, that lady is definitely on a mission" I am on a mission. All because I said yes. What is your "yes" moment? When did you decide to step up to the line?
  17. This is my first time posting on allnurses, so please bare with me. I'm currently a Junior at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee (UWM) majoring in Nursing. I want to share some of my Pre-nursing experiences and obstacles with everyone to show that they are not alone and anything can happen with a little bit of faith. My Freshman and Sophomore years were amazing and I received so many amazing opportunities. My biggest problem was that I was so consumed in my job and extracurricular activities, that it took a toll on my grades. I applied to the professional Nursing program in winter 2016 of my sophomore year. If i got accepted, I would begin the professional nursing major Fall of 2017 and graduate spring 2019. For my college admissions process, they look at our grades, work experience, volunteer activities, and a personally written essay. Sadly, not everyone can be accepted and many people get denied. I got denied my first try because of one of my grades in my science classes. It was very hard for me to take it, however, I tried to think of it in a positive way and learn from it. Luckily my school allows people to apply each semester. I decided to apply again that summer of 2017. If I got accepted I would begin the professional major Spring of 2018. I found out a week ago that I wasn't accepted nor denied. Rather I was placed #4 on the waiting list. Initially, I didn't know how to take this. I felt a variety of emotions like defeated, embarrassed, and ashamed. Later that week I heard from some of my friends that they were directly admitted and I was so happy for them, but it didn't make me feel better. Then I began to hear from some of my friends who weren't accepted. As much as this upset me, it definitely made me reflect upon my fate. Even though it sucks I'm on the waitlist, things could have been way worse (like not getting accepted again). I talked with my advisor and she said I have nothing to worry about and #4 is really high on the list. Every semester people miss deadlines or change their minds which opens up spots for people on the waitlist. My second time applying to the major I applied to UWM and another college for backup. There's no way I would risk not getting in again and having to be put back a whole year. I decided to apply to Columbia College of Nursing (CCON) which is another amazing Nursing college. For their admissions process, you have to pass the entrance HESI-A2 Exam with an 80% or better and pass all your classes with C's or better. I ended up passing and I recently received news that I was accepted to their college! As of now, I technically have two options to go to school. Ideally I would love to go to UWM, however, I always will have CCON for back-up. Hopefully, I receive a call from UWM soon and if I do, I will update this post!! I guess I'm writing this post for people who are doubting themselves right now. Nursing is a challenge, to begin with and especially the journey to get there. No matter what your journey, don't ever give up on your dreams of becoming a Nurse (this goes for me as well). It doesn't matter if it took you one time to apply or multiple times. No matter what, you will graduate and become a wonderful Nurse. Keep your head up and know you are never alone. We may not know each other on here, but we all share the passion of being or becoming wonderful nurses. We are here for you!
  18. After reading here on allnurses for some time and observing the amount of questions from potential students regarding what hallmarks identify quality nursing programs, I thought I would draft this article. I did considerable research on programs based on the specialties I was interested in, the structure, and the clinical experiences provided when I was school shopping. I really wish there had been more information available to me regarding the importance of quality clinical experiences. I was extremely lucky to attend an outstanding program, and because of my experiences I wanted to share information regarding the education model used and equip you all with a few more tools to use when considering your future school. With the advent of so many for-profit, poorly designed programs out there, the stories of students being taken advantage of are more and more common, and that is something I hate to see. Another recurring theme I see here on allnurses is that students are struggling during their clinical experiences. There seem to be many, many horror stories of clinical nightmares ranging from the professional team dynamic on a nursing unit, to personality clashes with faculty and staff, and difficulties with nurse preceptors. While I'm sure that these are multi-faceted issues, I wanted to share my experiences in a nursing program that utilizes the DEU or Designated Education Unit model of clinical teaching. In many "traditional" nursing programs, clinicals are structured something like this: Students have assigned clinical "days" of the week based on their faculty's schedule (or the school's schedule) Students visit the hospital the night before to receive patient assignments Students must look up pertinent information on their patients: chart, meds, history, allergies, etc in preparation for the next day's clinical. Students are assigned to a nurse preceptor who is in charge of the care for the patient to whom the student has been assigned; often the faculty assigns the patient to the student. Students may work a short shift or have limited hours on clinical days as paperwork may be due *that* day, which limits time at the bedside and may result in students spending time in the "break room" instead of hands-on learning. The student arrives to clinical, completes a day's work (or in some cases, shadows) The student turns in a care plan for their assigned patient, oftentimes the same day. There are a few limitations to the "traditional" model. Many of the students I know who attend programs that utilize this model spend hours of the night before clinical trying to complete paperwork and looking up medications, and arrive at clinical exhausted. Additionally, these students often do not attend report, get their assignment, and take charge of their day as they would in a normal work setting. Reading a patient history, getting a summary, and proceeding with care requires a very different learning skillset and level of critical thinking than poring over the patient's chart and looking up meds for hours. You simply do not have this kind of time when you begin to work as a nurse. Sometimes, the nurse preceptor to whom the student is assigned may not know they are getting a student that day, may be a new nurse themselves, or may not enjoy teaching. It seems that this is where a lot of conflict begins between student and preceptor. The DEU model takes place on units that are specifically designated as teaching units. In my area, these units have relationships with the local nursing schools, and policies and procedures are well developed and clear. The student's scope of practice, do's and don'ts, and learning objectives are well established. Nurses from DEU's volunteer to be preceptors, and in the case of my program, attend classes through the University that orient them to the nursing program's objectives, precepting methods, policies, procedures, teaching styles, etc. Most of our preceptors are extremely experienced nurses with a wealth of experience who truly enjoy teaching. Students are paired with preceptors that appear to be compatible with their personality, skill level, and the like. While this might not always be possible, efforts are made to ensure a good fit between student and preceptor, and both are fully instructed on protocols for handling any conflicts which may arise. In a DEU program, the students follow the schedule of their assigned nurse preceptor for the entire rotation. This may include day shifts, nights, evenings, weekends, 8 hour shifts, 12 hour shifts, etc. Also, the students are not required to visit the hospital the night before to receive assignments; the student is assigned to a nurse, not a specific patient. The student arrives early, attends report, reviews the patients' charts, and sets up their day alongside their nurse preceptor, just as a licensed nurse does on a daily basis. Many times, in the later semesters of the programs, the clinical faculty is not even present for the entire shift. A mid-term and final evaluation is conducted between the student, nurse preceptor, and faculty, and this evaluation is exactly like a professional performance review. Clinical paperwork, such as care plans, are turned in weekly to the clinical faculty, typically via email; generally only one care plan is due per week. Post conference takes place during a typical class day, not during clinical. Students are still expected to know their meds, know their skills, and know their patient's backgrounds before administering any medications or initiating care. Technology is welcomed; medications can be looked up in a variety of software programs if the student needs a refresher prior to administering the med, but everything is done on the unit, just as a licensed nurse would do. The first two semesters of the program are weighted very heavily for lab time. Before the student performs skills in the hospital setting, they have become proficient in the lab; lab equipment is purchased based on the brands and models used on the DEU to ensure familiarity. Pharmacology is also heavily front weighted, and competency expectations are clear and quite high. Excellent reference materials are provided in the classroom, including commonly encountered med "cheat sheets" based on DEU protocols and preferences. Overall, my experiences with the DEU model have been outstanding. During my first medical rotation, my cohort actually was not able to participate in this model because of a massive overhaul of the hospital's electronic medical records system. For this rotation, we were assigned nurse preceptors on the fly, more like the traditional model. While I still had a terrific experience (especially because the hospital had tons of float and travel nurses to facilitate the EMR change), I could definitely see how problems could occur. The advantage was that I was able to observe many different approaches to nursing. The disadvantage to the traditional model is that the student must establish rapport, "prove" their skillset, and review what they are allowed to do each time they meet a new nurse, which can be a hindrance to skill development, time management development, and autonomy. By the "advanced" rotations that took place during the second to last semester of my program, all of the students were expected to carry a full patient load of 4-5 patients (depending on the unit's policy. ICU =2, for example), complete assessments, administer all meds, draw labs, communicate with physicians, and complete all charting on time and accurately. Charting was cosigned by the nurse preceptor but was part of the patient's actual medical record. 85% of this work was conducted independently or with stand by assist. This second to last semester served as preparation for the student's final practicum in the specialty of their choice, if accepted. The DEU model overall allows for tremendous growth, student confidence, and truly prepares students to enter the "real world" of nursing. While all students enter the profession with a great deal to learn, the flexibility of this model truly helps students to become functional team members and lets them work at the pace of the unit. Students who are ahead and demonstrating more advanced skills are pushed and provided with additional challenges and responsibilities; those who need a bit more time are accommodated and brought along more slowly. The DEU model provides excellent networking opportunities for students. Throughout all of the rotations, the student has the chance to develop relationships with not only their nurse preceptor, but their nurse managers, physicians, support staff, and even HR in some cases. Many students in previous classes have obtained employment prior to graduation. This goes both ways, however. If a student is not meeting benchmarks, constructive feedback is given and consequences are made abundantly clear. My program wasn't perfect. I had a lot of gripes (mainly about a lot of petty things, I know now!). After reading so many student horror stories on AN, speaking to my peers who are completing their degrees at a variety of different schools, and doing some basic research, I took every complaint back. I feel tremendously privileged to have attended this style of program. I feel that my time management and critical thinking have grown exponentially, and I was able to secure a coveted final practicum slot on a specialty unit that offers limited access to students. The DEU model strives to improve upon the traditional model by meeting the needs of both the seasoned preceptor and the student nurses who are anxious to learn, all the while keeping patient care in the forefront. I hope this information will assist you when you are evaluating your program options. I cannot emphasize enough the importance of choosing a program with good NCLEX pass rates, good completion statistics, and that is (most importantly) full accredited. Don't be afraid to take your time when evaluating schools; ask questions and dig in to the school's stats, get feedback from other students, talk to hiring managers in your community. (Be professional, of course!). How are clinicals conducted? How many hours does the program include? What type of technology does the simulation lab offer, and how often can you get in to the lab to use it? The job market continues to be tough, and equipping yourself with the best education possible is one step you can take on the road to achieving your dreams. Here is some more information on DEU as well as a link to one of the school's utilizing this model: Implementing Quality and Safety at the Unit Level in an Innovative Clinical Education Model Dedicated Education Unit: An Innovative Clinical Partner Education Model University of Portland (Not my school, but a nice summary) Thanks for reading, have fun, and get out there and own your nursing school experience!
  19. futureRNDANI

    Making My Way to Nursing School

    My mom is an LPN, my sister-in-law is an RN (BSN). From both of their experiences as well as my own research I've gained a lot of information about the process. I must say the hardest thing was deciding whether I wanted to go for my associates or bachelors first. There are so many schools out there. For the most part they all have the same prerequisites. I love science but math is not exactly my strong suit. I asked my sister in law what she did to do well in those courses and she said she used Statistics for Dummies. So It got me thinking while I have the time why don't I start getting familiar with the courses I'm going to take so it won't be so overwhelming. Besides the For Dummies series there is a plethora of books out there to help you understand these courses. So while I await starting classes in January I've been getting a head start on statistics and chemistry. I advise anyone who has the jitters about those pre-nursing courses to go ahead and get a head start studying. There is no such thing as being too prepared. So I'll be honest I'm not exactly excited about the amount of time it will take to get through school but this is one profession where there really are no shortcuts. Even the accelerated programs are no joke. I've looked at Molloy, LIU, Adelphi, QCC, & St. Pauls. A nursing education is pretty expensive if you're going the private school route. So let's talk brass tacks! CUNY and SUNY schools are very affordable and with the new Excelsior program, it makes getting a degree more feasible. However, for a student who desires to study nursing, it can be a frustrating and long journey. Their nursing programs are very competitive with a lot of applicants vying to get into them. It all depends on if you're willing to spend the extra time waiting to get into the program if you don't make it in on the first try. A private school is still competitive but the chances of getting into a nursing program are stronger. Some of these schools if you already have a bachelors degree they have accelerated nursing programs. Not all private schools equal a quality education. That's why it's so important research the schools and see what students had to say about their experience there. Private or public the main thing is doing excellent and studying so that when you get on the job you are well prepared. I did research upon research and I'll admit the more information I had the more overwhelmed I felt. I pushed through because I knew this is what I truly want. I eventually want to go to a private school but it will save me some coins by going to a CUNY to get all the pre-reqs done. It's going to be a long process but I have a plan. And to me planning is everything. If you don't plan it's like being in the middle of an ocean on a little boat without a paddle. I write these words for anyone trying to figure out this process. Ask a lot of questions. Do a lot of research. The main thing is ask yourself the important questions: How worth it is it to you to become a nurse ? How badly do you want it? What are you willing to sacrifice to become one ? Are you ready to dedicate the time to your studies and go to school ? If you can answer these questions and more than you'll have more reason to push through. So at all my fellow per-nursing, nursing students and those trying to decide if they should become a nurse good luck and hang in there. It will all be worth it in the long run.
  20. tnbutterfly - Mary

    Student Survey: What Students Really Want

    You have decided you want to become a nurse, and now you have decisions to make. Deciding which nursing school is a very important decision and one that should be made with careful consideration of many factors. The 2017 allnurses Student Survey provided a lot of great information. We have our almost 1,500 respondents to thank for providing data by answering questions in the 10-minute online survey. More Student Survey Articles... Why Did You Choose Nursing? Student Survey: Demographics Student Survey: School Profiles Now we are ready for Part 4 which focuses on What Students Really Want. There are many well-known college guides that rate schools based on factors they feel are important. The survey asked respondents to rate which factors were important to them in influencing their decision in choosing a school. Students could rate 39 factors. They were then asked to select 5 that were the "most important" from the list. There are many lists by companies in the business of ranking colleges. These have some value as a resource to use in your selection process, but you will have to decide what's most important for you. National college rankings did not even make the list in some age and education levels brackets of those selected as most important while Academic Reputation ranked 6th overall as one of the most important factors to consider. Some of the results you see may surprise you. Once again, using the interactive charts, you will see that priorities differ based on age, level of education and degree program pursuing. Priorities are not a one-size-fits-all and neither is the selection of what school to attend. Add the results of this survey to your list of resources to use when making this important decision. Post your input below if you have other insights that helped you select a school. We hope this has been helpful. We wish you well in your career as a nurse.
  21. aoguagha

    Tips for Studying Abroad

    Many students try to circumvent the high costs of post secondary education in the United States by studying at overseas institutions. Meanwhile, others pursue education overseas because they believe that the quality of education is higher overseas or because they just want to travel and live in another country. Like many others before me, I chose to study abroad because I wanted to travel and experience another culture but most importantly because the costs of education in the US are too high. Studying overseas meant that the cost of education is 2 to three times less than the cost of schools in the states or free -if you receive a scholarship. As an undergraduate student, I studied at a private intuition in the US and the debt I accrued as a result of my studies will follow me well into adulthood. During those times, I always flirted with the idea of studying abroad, if even for a semester, however, I could not afford it. I spent all of my free time working- just to pay the amount my loans wouldn't cover. The last semester of my senior years, I made a decision to leave the country but didn't know where I would go or how I would survive. I just knew I wanted to do two things: see the world and study. While I was researching places to visit, I figured out a way to realize my dreams of studying and traveling. People do not know that there are scholarships offered by different governments to attend undergraduate and graduate schools in their country. For example, with the Chinese Scholarship Council (China) and the Endeavour Scholarship and Fellowship (Australia), students from all over the world can choose to study undergraduate and graduate programs in certain Chinese and Australian universities. Even the United States offers scholarships for US citizens to study overseas. The Organization of American States (OAS) Scholarship offers a scholarship for students to attend undergraduate and graduate programs in up to 35 North and South American countries- excluding the US if you are a US citizen. Some countries such as Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Indonesia offer only graduate level studies. Many of the aforementioned programs require students to take language courses in conjunction with the Nursing degree. If granted the scholarship, tuition, room and board, and student insurance are covered. In addition to that, students receive a monthly stipend to help defer the cost of living. And in the case of the OAS Scholarship, round trip airfare will be provided- for all other scholarships recipients may be required to pay for their own airfare. Those looking to fill out an application would be conscious of the deadline dates. The most important thing to remember when studying abroad is that completing a nursing degree abroad does not mean you can automatically practice in the United States. The Nursing laws are different in each state however many require that you: Graduate from an English Accredited RN Program If the language of instruction was a language other than English, the student will need to take and pass an English language proficiency test such as TOEFL. Take and Pass the National Council Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) Some states require that nurses who have completed a degree overseas complete a Foreign Educated Nurses refresher course. Get a Basic Life Support (BLS), an Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) course, or a Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) certification from an accredited American Heart Association (AHA) provider. As a graduate student in China, I have learned that there are highs and lows to living abroad. The lows involve missing family and friend but the highs include being surrounded by different and exciting people. Keep in mind that studying abroad is challenging and that flexibility is the key to survival.
  22. Jonathan Downham is an Advanced Critical Care Practitioner in Warwick, UK. He was in Florida recently at NTI 2019. allnurses.com’s Content and Community Director, Mary Watts caught up with him for an interview. HistoryJonathan has a 32-year history as an ICU nurse. He stated, “The career progression is different in the UK than the US.” According to an article in the Journal of the Intensive Care Society, “Although advanced critical care nurse practitioners (ACCNPs) have been established in the US since the early 1990s, this role has not developed to the same extent in the UK. Also, whereas the critical care outreach nurse has been a well-established role throughout the UK, there was no national consensus on the ACCNP role. To address this, in 2015, the Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine developed a curriculum for Training for ACCPs that was applicable to both nurses and other allied health professionals.” When asked how he got started in podcasting Jonathan said, When I got to the top of the tree (of the ranks in Intensive Care), the possibility of becoming a Nurse Practitioner was being muted. Being "a bit of a geek and loving gadgets" he decided to start the blog, CriticalCarePractitioner. After starting the blog, Jonathan realized that “I don’t want to write and write and write” and started podcasting in 2014. He has approximately 120 podcasts on his site. Some of the topics covered include: AnemiaSepsisHemodynamicsMental health for the ICU nurseHow to connect with nurses?He talked about how his podcasts help him to connect with nurses from around the world. Jonathan also offers video teaching and admits that “I learn things and so do the people who watch.” During NTI, for instance, he produced several podcasts onsite including one with other social media influencers (CCP Podcast 121). Other videos cover: Chest x-ray interpretationInsertion of chest tubesDifficult intubationsThe whys of “proning” an ICU patientWhen asked how he has grown his website and expanded his following, he alluded to the “uphill struggle as I still have a day job.” He promotes his podcasts by writing blog posts and utilizes word of mouth but admits it’s been difficult sometimes. Jonathan also has many blog posts on his site that are clinically focused, many geared towards newer critical care nurses. Mary asked Jonathan how he chose topics for his podcasts? “I use social media platforms like Twitter and then ask the people that I follow if they would like to chat and about 80% agree to do so.” Podcasts are really a one-way street Jonathan admits, “I get approximately 2000 downloads but I think if it could be two-way communication it would easier and more widespread. Podcasts are geared to one-way learning.” He has also expanded to producing YouTube videos with an emphasis on clinical competencies. And what about the future?And finally, they discussed the future. “I would like to believe that I could continue this well into retirement. The flexibility is great. I’m working on teaching videos and want to continue to build my podcasts. This helps to inspire nurses around the world. I’m a nurse and always will be.” Watch the interview:
  23. When it comes to anything having to do with scholastic endeavors, I have always taken pleasure and excelled. As I would tell my professors when they asked me how I did so well, the realm of academia has always been my happy place; I have some modicum of control when it comes to bringing to fruition desired outcomes (I.e. studying and hard work lead to good grades). Applying to nursing school, however, felt a lot like an exercise in futility. Some might say that I should have taken the rejection letters as a humbling experience; I would have taken the rejection in stride and learned something from it, except for the fact that I have spoken with faculty members from various nursing schools and have witnessed practices that I do not consider ethical at all. Furthermore, speaking with peers, while anecdotal, revealed a lot as well. There is a dark underbelly to the admissions process and I would even hazard to say that applying to medical school would have been a more streamlined, less harrowing experience. What follows is my own personal experience with the admissions process and what has led me to believe that nursing school admissions is murky, clandestine bog of uncertainties and questionable practices. Prior to applying to nursing school for the first time, I conferred with a member of the college's faculty (who was close friends with someone on the nursing admissions committee), asking if I should try out for sponsorship since my grades were so good. Having insider knowledge, he advised me not to because they preferred to grant sponsorship to hospital employees, applicants from disadvantaged backgrounds, or relatives/favorites. He also mentioned that sponsorship applicants who were rejected were not then put back into the general pool of applicants for nursing school; essentially, the coveted six sponsored seats were chosen and the remainder of sponsorship applications were thrown in the garbage. Nobody knew of this practice, including one of my good friends with a stellar GPA, who had repeatedly applied for sponsorship but had been rejected for the past three years (only when she threatened with a lawsuit was she suddenly accepted). When I finally applied for nursing school in 2015, I heeded the faculty member's advice and would not touch sponsorship with a ten foot pole, even though I had the grades for it. The following Spring, I received my first rejection letter, which cited that there were far too many qualified applicants, blah, blah, blah. Fine. I was well aware of the fact that hardly anyone I knew was accepted the first time, so I decided to patiently bide my time until the next application period, enrolling in an EMT course in order to have clinical experience. I knew many friends and acquaintances who had gotten in on the second try. The second time that I applied for nursing school in 2016, I decided to turn in my application in person. The administrators took my new application, but then proclaimed that they could not find my initial application. The dean of the nursing school came forward and asked me what my rejection letter had said and I informed her of its contents. She personally looked me up in their system and found my application under the category of applicants scoring below eligibility requirements (pre-requisite validation cut-score of 75% and/or composite score of 62% on the assessment test). Frowning, I informed her that that simply could not be possible since a counselor had calculated that my GPA placed me at 89%. This was no mistake or error in calculation, as the faculty knows me well (the dean herself knows that I have a bachelors degree from the same school that she attended for her MSN). The dean calculated my percentage herself on the spot and corrected the "error," assuring me that I would get in on the second try. Which brings me to where I am today: holding a letter informing me that I am an alternate so far down on the waiting list that I wasn't even invited to their in-take meeting (code for surprise drug test). Once again, as told by a member of the admissions committee over the phone today, I have to bide my time until the next application period. Many nursing programs openly state that their programs are impacted and that waiting to get into a program can take as long as three years to finally be accepted. At least such programs are being honest and while I think it somewhat preposterous, I respect their candor. The two schools that I have had dealings with, however, have no such officially impacted statuses, instead opting to artificially impact their programs with, for lack of a better word, shady practices. For example, the Microbiology professor at one school informed me that the nursing department actually frowns on him awarding A's to students, encouraging him to give B's even if the students rightfully earned A's. Why are nursing schools trying to lower students' scores? To stem the flow of applicants? I was under the impression that there was a nursing shortage. Another equally troubling practice is when nursing schools give deference to applicants based on factors not having to do anything with academics. From whether the applicant was a CNA first to what ethnicity box the applicant places a check mark in, there are numerous unofficial factors that influence admission into a program. I cannot tell you the number of times that I have congratulated friends who were accepted with C averages or had to go through remediation programs but also happened to speak a foreign language predominantly spoken in the state that I live in. While I am happy for my friends, I also think that politics have no place in nursing. If a nursing school wanted for students to be able to speak that foreign language, why wasn't it indicated on the application? I would have gladly learned the language instead of squandering three years of my life waiting to hear if I was accepted into the program. As much as I love the field of healthcare and very much enjoyed patient interaction during clinicals, I do not love the hoops that nursing schools ask students to jump through. I'm not talking about the prerequisite courses (I actually really liked taking those). I'm talking about the unofficial profiling that admissions committees inevitably take part in when they consider applicants for admission into their program. One faculty member told me that I was not getting in because I already have a bachelors degree in another discipline, stating that I was already equipped to get a job and that the school's vetting process was a form of social justice. What does that have to do with anything? Medical and law schools accept people with diverse majors, so why is nursing school holding my possession of a prior degree against me? Yes, I do have a degree, but I also have $50,000 in student loans that accrue interest on a quarterly basis and my unemployed status only exacerbates the debt. I don't mean to sound bitter or disgruntled, but I originally decided to pursue nursing for all the right reasons (I like helping humanity, I enjoy interacting with patients, and I like medicine). After being rejected multiple times from nursing school, however, I feel like all my original zeal has been wrung from me and I am now simply left as a husk of regret and frustration. I almost feel like my time would have been better spent pursuing another degree in healthcare and maybe that is something else to consider for the future. My final thought on this matter is that I think many qualified potential future nurses are being sieved out for the wrong reasons and doing so is a disservice to patients. As one patient told me at his bedside when I was completing clinical hours, he preferred a nurse who earned A's in her courses over a nurse with C's and D's. I couldn't agree more.
  24. ZenRN181

    How Not to Study

    I have always done well in school but good grades have not come easy, they require me to study for hours, make countless flashcards, attend lectures and read the book. Usually this produced results in the category of an A or a B and avoiding the nursing school failing grade of a C. Stressful? yes. Worth it? Absolutely- I'm currently a pediatric nurse practitioner after many years of hard work. My advice to nursing students, don't be like one of my first students. I was a TA for undergraduate pharmacology while I was in graduate school, it was extra money for me and a good review of pharmacology as well and I love to teach. We had multiple students repeating the course as they had not passed the year prior. During our first quiz, I was stopped by a student asking me to clarify one of the test questions: T/F- Does the nurse need to check allergies, contraindications, side effects, etc on every medication administration (Not the exact questions, but similar) The student asked me if it was for new medications or chronic medications, I replied both and went on my way. The student picked the wrong answer and promptly emailed me saying I led her to the wrong answer. She stated she had been in clinicals the year before and she had never seen her preceptors do the above and didn't think it was necessary and wanted the point back. Never assume you know everything, that is my advice to you. It doesn't matter if you have worked in a hospital, repeated a course, your mom is a nurse, you saw something on Grey's Anatomy, you've worked as a nursing assistant. Approach every day as you will learn something new everyday and you will. Approach it as you know the answer to everything, you will lose out on so many learning opportunities. One of the surgeons I work with who has been a surgeon for longer than I've been alive says he learns something new everyday. This is a good thing! You will constantly learn as a new nurse and continue to learn through your whole career, embrace it, you will be a better nurse for it. You will learn so much from nursing school, it is stressful, but I promise it is worth it. Keep an open mind Go to class, even if your classmates don't, going to class prepared is even better Pay attention in class, if your laptop is too distracting, don't bring it and take notes the old fashioned way. facebook and Instagram will still be there when class is over, I promise Read the syllabus Ask questions, no such thing as a stupid question Sleep truly is important Take care of yourself- mentally and physically Read the textbooks and assigned reading (skim at a minimum) Get to know your classmates, form a study group Read the syllabus Start studying for exams your first day of class. Cramming doesn't work! Get to know your professors Check your email and respond to emails Be the person in a group project everyone wants to work with Find a place where you can study effectively Buy a planner and use it!! Organization is your friend. No one owes you anything, own up if you made a mistake or didn't study and make sure it doesn't happen again. Ask questions You are an intelligent adult, don't have your parents call the school to complain about your grades or teachers. This is your educations, own it! Approach your professors and talk to them with issues- they are great problem solvers Read the syllabus (noticing a pattern?) Lost the attitude if you have one When you assume, you make an *** out of u and me Welcome to the wonderful world of nursing, it's a crazy ride but I'm so happy you joined it
  25. For a myriad of reasons, many nurses who are educated at the diploma or associate degree level are wanting to return to school to earn a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree. For instance, managerial personnel at numerous acute care hospitals across the US are requiring currently-employed nurses to earn the BSN degree within a certain time frame. Conversely, nurses who do not comply with this requirement are faced with the very real risk of demotion or outright termination of employment. In addition, some nursing professionals are intrinsically motivated to further their schooling because they are looking to augment their knowledge base and receive well-rounded educations. Are you a nursing professional with an associates degree or diploma who wants to pursue higher education without accruing a ridiculous amount of student loan debt? If so, you might want to look more closely into the online RN-to-BSN programs that have been listed below. Also, feel free to post a response if you know of any other reputable online RN-to-BSN degree completion programs that offer affordability and value. Fort Hays State University Fort Hays State University, based in Kansas, offers an accredited online RN-to-BSN degree completion program through their Virtual College. Students who are enrolled in the Virtual College pay the affordable rate of $186 per credit hour at the time of this update (March 2015). University of Louisiana at Lafayette The University of Louisiana at Lafayette is a respected school that offers a fully accredited online RN-to-BSN degree completion program. Tuition is $316.66 per credit hour at the time of this writing. Estimated tuition for the entire RN-to-BSN program is less than $10,000 for nursing courses. Ohio University Ohio University is another reputable school that offers an accredited online RN-to-BSN degree completion program with attractively priced tuition. At the time of this writing, tuition is $240 per credit hour for residents of Ohio, and $243 per credit for students who reside out of state. University of Texas at Arlington The University of Texas at Arlington offers a popular, well respected, very affordable, fully accredited, and totally online RN-to-BSN degree completion program. Tuition for the online RN-to-BSN courses is $257 per credit hour at the time of this writing. Western Governors University With an innovative competency-based model that allows busy professionals to complete their degree requirements in an accelerated time frame, Western Governors University is growing in popularity. Tuition for the online, fully accredited RN-to-BSN program is $3250 per 6-month term. Many people have completed the program in less than 12 months, and some have even finished in less than six months. Grantham University Grantham University, a private for-profit virtual college, offers a nationally-accredited RN-to-BSN degree completion program that is affordable, convenient and user-friendly. The tuition of $265 per credit hour certainly places Grantham University's RN-to-BSN program into an affordable category when compared to other similar programs. Lamar University Lamar University, a respectable public university located in southeast Texas, offers an accredited online RN-to-BSN completion program. The tuition of $283 per credit hour makes this program affordable for students who want to pursue higher learning while minimizing costs. Eastern New Mexico University Eastern New Mexico University, a public university located in Portales, offers a CCNE-accredited RN-to-BSN degree completion program that is 100% online. At $203 per semester hour, this program is an absolute bargain. Out-of-state students qualify for the low in-state tuition and fees if enrolled on a part-time basis. Purdue University Kaplan University, an investor-owned private for-profit institution of higher learning, offers a CCNE-accredited RN-to-BSN program that is also 100% online. The tuition of $315 per credit may not be the lowest-priced, but it is still worthy of inclusion on our list.