Cherries: 5 Pits: 4
I’m not sure where to start. Since I last wrote so much has happened and I am excited to share these last 8 months!!!
Shortly after my last blog I received confirmation that my application had been finalized and was being considered. Cherry 1: Not long after that, I receive another email I had been waiting for. I was accepted into the Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing at the local university!
Cherry 2: At the local community college I received a notice that I was on their waiting list. I kept that spot until everything was completely and totally finalized at the university. The community college has a competitive program too, and it would have been a strong alternative.
Cherry 3: All the paperwork at the university went through without a hitch and I began my first semester of nursing school in August. I had many textbooks to buy and supplies to order, but it all worked out well. I used my new Amazon Prime account to get my textbooks quickly and because I filled out the FAFSA I was automatically considered for some financial aid and scholarships without even doing anything else!
There was one more lower division class I had to take so I signed up to take this class online at the community college (online was not available at the university). This allowed me to work on that class at home instead of having to figure out how to work it into the varying schedule of nursing school. :-)
Well, as you probably figure from the date of this post, I have now completed my first semester of nursing school!!! The entire program is three years long and includes classes during the next two summers. So I have 7 semesters of training left before I will have my BSN. I can hardly believe that by May 2020, I will have a BSN behind my name!
Then I will take the NC-LEX and will add the RN initials also. There is so much to do between now and then and I am so excited to see everything I end up experiencing!
Cherry 4: Even though I am just starting out I have gotten involved right away.
I have become a member of the Student Nurses Association (SNA) and my school chapter. I am one of my class representatives and enjoy attending and participating in the monthly meetings.
I continue to volunteer in the local Emergency Department and since this is the type of nursing I am interested in, I have also become a member of the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA). The monthly meetings for the local chapter are informational and make me feel like part of the team even though I am not out of school yet.
Pit 1: I recently discovered that my schedule in the Spring may keep me from being able to attend the monthly meetings, but I will remain connected and hopefully will be able to attend some of the special events or conferences that take place at a different time.
Pit 2: One of the challenges I had this semester was time management. I knew nursing school would be quite different from “regular” school, but I soon discovered that I was not prepared for all the forward planning I would need to do. Before nursing school, I had been working full-time and just taking a class or two at night. Now I am structuring my entire schedule around schoolwork and studying and I realize planning for two lecture classes and two clinical is not the same as taking two night classes. Now that I am on break, I am setting up my calendar to help me stay organized and looking ahead to due dates and planning enough time to practice and study.
Pit 3/Cherry 5: In addition to studying and planning I had some difficult professors. Before I even met one of my professors I heard from several past students that the professor was really challenging! I was determined to keep an open mind and I found that since the professor was not a “favorite” the professor had extra time to help me learn! That ended up being a plus for me. 😃 Another professor had a different teaching style that took a little while to get used to. No more of the professor giving you a completed study guide of everything you need to know for an exam. I have to go home and study and learn the material in depth so I can answer questions about why this or why not that. In fact, at one point I did so poorly on one of my exams that I seriously thought I might be forced to start the semester over again. This made me study extra hard for the next exam and I pulled off an acceptable grade so I can move forward (*sigh of relief*)!
My focuses for my break between semesters is to get super organized, as I love to be, so I have a binder and folder for each class. I want to update my calendar to include all my due dates as soon as I get them and begin planning for time to work on papers etc.
Pit 4: Another step to complete is the (hopefully) final steps on my Hep B immunization. It turned out before school started, that the required Hep B titer didn’t show a sure sign of immunity. This meant I had to get three boosters and then I have to get another titer drawn. My third shot needs to be done this week and then the titer done next month. This is just in time for the deadline…of course. 😉
For now that’s all I can think of to bring you up to speed! I hope you all had a wonderful Winter/Christmas/Year-end celebration with your family and friends!!!
Happy New Year!