4 Tips To Help You Survive Nursing School
As far as career paths are concerned, a career in nursing is one of the more desirable options at this time. Not only is there a great deal of job security involved as the result of a lack of qualified healthcare professionals across the board, but there are also a variety of options for specialization and career advancement that nurses today can enjoy. A career in nursing can truly be as lucrative as it is rewarding and fulfilling.
That being said, the road to becoming a nurse isn’t the easiest one to take. The requirements of nursing school, not to mention those of advanced degree programs, can be grueling and challenging. There are some definitive ways of making the road a bit easier on yourself, despite the challenges that lie ahead.
Here are four practical tips that can help anyone who aspires to become a nurse to not only survive nursing school but thrive throughout the process.
1. Choose Your Program Wisely
The first decision that you will have to make once you select nursing as your chosen profession is which nursing school you are going to attend. There are many factors that you should consider but bear in mind that choosing the right nursing school program for yourself is a process that should not be rushed. You need to take your time and weigh up all relevant factors so that you can find the program that is right for you.
For instance, not all nursing schools are created equal. The different programs that you consider are going to have various pros and cons that should be taken into account. Moreover, you need to find a program that suits you and your learning style. Your personal circumstances and learning style might not be conducive to a more traditional university environment. For such individuals, there are a number of excellent online and part-time education options available.
If you are in a situation where you are going to need to continue to work throughout the time that you are earning your nursing degree, an online school like Carson-Newman can prove to be the most viable option. Online nursing programs give students flexibility to complete coursework on their own time. This means that you have the opportunity to structure your schedule as you see fit so that you can complete your degree while also honoring your other commitments.
2. Prepare Accordingly
One of the biggest mistakes that you could possibly make when you are about to enter into a nursing school program is neglect to prepare for the experience. While there is going to be a great deal of information given to you throughout your first few weeks of school, you will need to complete the proper preparations ahead of time. Such preparations are all about ensuring that you have the tools that you will need for success before you ever step foot in the classroom.
In particular, if you do opt for an online nursing program, you are going to need to make sure that you have the most ideal workspace prepared for yourself before classes begin. This means finding a place in your home that can be turned into a dedicated workspace for yourself. Your workspace should be light and bright with minimal distractions.
When you are assembling your ideal workspace, there are a few things that you are going to need to have at your disposal. You will need a comfortable setup with an adequate chair that you can comfortably sit in for an extended period of time, as well as a desk that has enough space for all of your learning materials.
Most importantly, your workspace should be set apart from the rest of your home so that you can tune out any distractions while you work. There should be adequate lighting and minimal noise so that you can truly focus in on the challenging work that you have to complete throughout your various courses.
3. Create a Support System
Since nursing school is such a challenging experience for most, it is always a good idea to enlist the services of a reliable support system for yourself in advance. Your close friends and family should know that you are about to embark upon a difficult journey, whether you are going to earn your undergraduate degree in nursing or an advanced degree of some sort. Giving them a heads up about what you are going to be going through can prove to be incredibly helpful for you.
As you enter your nursing school program, you should do so knowing that, along the way, you are going to need to rely on your support system. This is especially true for those who are going to be working while in school at the same time. Balancing such a schedule will be difficult, but knowing that you have a strong support system around you to lean on will make the process that much easier to bear.
4. Become a Master of Time Management
Any student who is about to start a new degree program can benefit from taking the time to brush up on their time management skills. This rings particularly true for nursing school students who are going to need to be able to adequately balance classes, labs, clinicals, and even work in some cases.
The key to mastering time management is to be completely honest with yourself about the amount of time it takes to accomplish certain tasks. It would be best if you then looked to draw up a realistic schedule for yourself that you can maintain throughout the course of a semester.
As your schedule evolves and fluctuates throughout the course of the semester, be prepared to adapt and make any necessary changes. You will be more likely to succeed, the better you are at adapting to changes in your schedule. Continue to be honest with yourself about your personal expectations, and remember to be prepared for some long nights and early mornings.