Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Work Experience Builds Confidence

I cannot overemphasize how important it is to gain experience in healthcare before graduating from nursing school. Many nursing schools require some sort of experience as a nurse's aide (NA) at either a I or II level. These schools require this experience from their students because they know that students will learn lessons at work that they may not learn while in nursing school.

I know for me personally working as a nurse extern at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center has been a great opportunity to learn many skills that are vital to success as a nurse. Working in a hospital as a nurse extern (NA I and II) has taught me time management skills, prioritization, effective communication, and people skills.

My responsibilities do not end with the basic duties I perform as a NA; they go much farther and encompass communicating patient and family concerns with nurses, doctors, nutritionists, medical and PA students, and physical, occupational, and speech therapists.

These are life experiences for which I wouldn't trade the whole world because they have prepared me for my future vocation as a nurse, a job that will put me in the position to deal with issues with both people and equipment. I now have confidence when I walk into a patient's room--confidence that I can get the job done in a timely manner and take care of all the patients I am assigned. This confidence was born first in the amazing clinical experiences we have at Liberty University, but it has matured and grown as I have worked in the hospital setting as an employee with coworkers I have an opportunity to get to know and patients I get to see more than one day a week.

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