student life


Six Things I Learned During my Final Year of Nursing School

Written by: Kayla Del Mundo

2020 is the Year of the Nurse. Florence Nightingale once said, "To be ‘in charge’ is certainly not only to carry out the proper measures yourself but to see that everyone else does so too.” I feel as if the class of 2020 is a testament to this quote. We were the bunch of future nurses experiencing a pandemic that brought together the meaning of nursing and the duties that we will fulfill as Registered Nurses in the work field.  

No one expected the world to be dealing with such a huge pandemic crisis 6 months ago, but it happened. I was starting my senior year of nursing school just months away from getting that BSN and RN license. I was expecting to do my senior preceptorship in my dream unit, Labor & Delivery/Postpartum. I was expecting to be with my friends in the study room, counting down the seconds until our exit exam and finding out we passed nursing school. I was expecting to have a big celebration with my cohorts at our pinning ceremony. I was expecting many things this year that unfortunately did not pull through because of the pandemic. And that's okay!!! There was no book on how to go to nursing school through a pandemic, but since we've been in this quarantine style learning for 6 months, here are 6 things I learned during my last year of nursing school.  

  1. Online learning is harder than it looks.
    If you love online classes, that's awesome! If you're more of an in-person learner, this pandemic situation may have been a struggle. Adapting to a new learning style may be difficult at first but ensure that you are staying organized and managing your time wisely. It's important that we don't slack off even though we are stuck at home doing school all day, every day.
  2. I have never loved my bed so much in my life.
    - I had to include this in here because for me, it's an understatement. I never was a person who took naps but being on my butt in a chair for 5 hours can do a lot to your body. Ensure that you are taking breaks and even a nap to recharge yourself for that next lecture or even clinicals.
  3. Be patient with your school and professors.
    Transitioning from on-campus to online was a shock to everyone. Your school probably wasn't prepared to have to close down or make changes within the curriculum. It's completely frustrating and I get it. I was a part of the many programs that had to do their skills check-offs online and do clinicals online (Swift River for life!). Your school’s deans and professors are doing everything they can to provide you the best education in different circumstances.
  4. Blue light glasses are your best friend.  
     Staring at the screen all day can do damage to your eyes. Blue light glasses help to block out the blue light emitted from screens. One of my favorite blue light glasses is on Amazon! Effective and affordable! 
  5. Zoom Study Meetings are a LIFESAVER
    My friends and I always met up with each other to study for quizzes and tests but not these past 6 months. Of course, we had to maintain the social distance of 6 feet apart, so we did the next best thing: Zoom Study Meetings! It's the best way to stay connected with your friends while getting work/studying done.  
  6. Cherish the last few moments you have with your cohorts.  
    - I know that it is hard to accept that you cannot see your nursing friends right now. But we just have to make the best of the situation. Reminisce on the times you guys had at school and think of all the memories you could make after graduating nursing school and passing NCLEX®! 

But if you are a nursing student right now, something I want to tell you is everything will be okay. You are on this path of nursing for a reason and do not let any external barriers get in your way. There's a world full of sick people waiting to be treated. Although the circumstances aren't what we expected it to be, we need to remember that the future is bright. Provide yourself a good foundation with positive affirmations. 

I AM capable of passing nursing school. 

I WILL be a Registered Nurse. 

I CAN do anything I set my mind to.