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Thread: A day in the life of an RN student

  1. #1
    Super Moderator cougarnurse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Parked in front of the computer when I am not working

    A day in the life of an RN student

    Thought this was an interesting story:

    On the east side of Flagstaff, NAU nursing students sometimes spend their mornings checking the blood pressure of the area’s homeless population.

    They also distribute informational pamphlets to increase awareness of potential health risks that can arise when spending most of your time walking under the Arizona sun from soup kitchen to shelter to the campsite where you sleep.

    The nursing program at NAU is known for the high-quality nurses it produces. Graduating from the school, however, isn’t a walk in the park.

    “Our program is very challenging,” says Julie Lodge, a nursing student at NAU. “We are in an accelerated program so it’s about two-times as fast as a regular program. We don’t have time for much else.”

    Lodge is a retired veterinarian who graduated from the University of Illinois. She lived in Phoenix prior to starting her nursing degree in Flagstaff.

    Because of the competitive nature of nursing school admissions, many students like Lodge must uproot and relocate with their families in order to get the education they desire.

    The accelerated program at NAU typically admits 30 students a year, according to an NAU nursing website. Students might not have free time, but they get their degrees twice as fast as their regularly scheduled counterparts.

    Events like the blood pressure screenings at Flagstaff Shelter Services give the students a chance to get real-world experience and to develop other skills that they will come to need in their profession.

    “The students probably did 40 blood pressure screenings today,” said Tom Isakson, the programs manager at Flagstaff Shelter Services. “It seems they fell into it well. They got to practice conversation with the clients, which is one of the goals, too.”

    According to Laura Karnitschnig, an assistant clinical professor for the nursing program at NAU, mental health training is a major component for the students going through the program. The students sometimes go to the Guidance Center, the Peaks and Southwest Behavioral Health Services as well.

    “Within the Peaks, there are people who have extra communication needs,” Karnitschnig said, “like people who are hearing impaired or have dementia.”

    The accelerated nursing program began in May with a new batch of students on a 12-month program. Many of the students in this program have additional qualifications that, to Karnitschnig, make sense for nursing.

    “All of these students have a previous bachelor’s degree,” Karnitschnig said, “There tends to be a lot of teachers. Which makes sense, because I think there’s definitely a connection there.”

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Real life experience is the best teacher. Bravo!

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