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ASK A STUDENT NURSE

'I feel completely unprepared to start my nurse training'

Can you help this student nurse?

“I’m about to start my nurse training and part of me is ridiculously excited, but another part of me is terrified. I feel completely unprepared and don’t know what I should be doing in the run-up to starting.

“I don’t know anyone who has trained as a nurse so haven’t really got any idea what the training is going to involve. To make matters worse, people keep pointing out to me bad press about nursing and reports of people having problems with bursaries.

“Can anyone tell me what to expect and what on earth I’m supposed to do before I start?”


Lucy, Leeds

 

Do you have any advice for Lucy? Use the comments section below

 

The advice that the team at Student NT, along with Lucy herself, feel is the most helpful will win a copy of “Critical Thinking and Writing for Nursing Students” by Bob Price and Anne Harrington.

Critical thinking book_SNT


The winner will be announced at 5pm Friday 24 January.

 

Readers' comments (12)

  • Lucy, my advice to you is to relax. You'll meet a bunch of other students who are probably experiencing the same feelings as you. It's normal. Ignore the negative press - that's not you. Use it as examples of what not to do. We learn from our own mistakes and those of others. Pretty sure you'll be fine and in a few months find yourself wondering what you were so worried about. Listen to what your lecturers have to say and read around topics so you feel more confident about them.

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  • I agree - relax, you have tons of time to settle in and learn... I would get a basic anatomy & physiology book if you haven't studied it for a while.. or a nursing textbook. I enjoyed reading the stories on patientopinion.org .. it helps see things from a patients perspective, a good place to start. Time will fly and I'm sure you'll feel challenged and have bad days - but I've enjoyed my training so much even when it's been tough and can't wait to qualify this year. Good luck!

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  • Agree with all comments. If you knew what to do already you would not need to be trained!! You will have a ball and if you have decided its what you want to do it will be amazing-enjoy it and go for it!!

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  • Hi Lucy, dont worry, everyone starting the course will be feeling pretty much the same. Rest assured, you will feel much more comfortable once toy start the course with like minded people. You will get plenty of support form your colleagues.
    Starting with Anatomy and Physiology is definitley the way to go, to get ahead start.
    I never heard anyone from my cohort with any problems with their bursary.

    Goodluck and enjoy it.
    (Cohort 2011.)



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  • Everyone feels anxious about starting their nursing training. It is extremely daunting. But don't worry most of your cohort will feel they same. Try to relax is just absorb much of what they tell you in the first few weeks. It will be infomation overlaod, but just tackle it bit by bit. Make sure you apply for your bursary as early as possible to reduced chances of anything going wrong. Try to read up on some anatomy and physiology it will give you a head start of what to expect first term
    Kathryn 1st yr student nurse x

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  • Hello Lucy,
    I had no health care experience before I started the course, and I'm half way through my second year training. Get yourself a nursing anatomy and physiology book, that's always helpful for a good grounding knowledge. The lecturers will know that everyone comes from different experiences/backgrounds, and they get everyone to the same level, so you have nothing to worry about :) try trying to get in touch with other people on your course before you actually start, made me feel a lot less nervous on starting the course that I actually had a few friends first. hope this helps!

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  • Do not worry too much - you are bound to have many anxieties about starting your nursing training. I am in my 3rd year of training and I still remember the numerous questions going through my head.

    I don't know what is available now, if there is a way of meeting friends before you start? I met some friends on YouGo before I started but I don't know of this still exists.

    Everyone has the worries of 'will I make friends?' - Everyone at university makes friends, 'Will the course be hard?' - the tutors give you support if and when needed, 'Will I like placement?' - only time will tell with this but if your heart is in the right place you should enjoy it!

    As soon as you start your first day, meet your new colleagues and find they are all feeling the same, you will soon feel like you fit in and your worries will subside as you will all be in the same boat.

    Good luck with your training, it is the best thing I have ever chosen to do :)

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  • Hi Lucy!

    I am in the exact same position as you, I'm due to start next month and I'm feeling terrified but so excited and it feels like every day is going so slowly on the build up to it.

    There's a few things I'm trying to remember that hopefully will help you too! Bad press is the only press these days so try not to worry too much, all you can do is the best you can and all the rest is out of your hands. I'm also trying to do a bit of background reading on this website etc to really get an idea of what's going on with nursing right now and how that affects students/nurses etc right now.
    I've contacted my university and asked what they recommend with regards to book lists, and I've been tweeting/blogging/reading forums about other student nurses and books they couldn't live without and having a look at them myself. I've found The student Room really helpful aswell as all the little blogs and experiences on here too. Get involved in twitter, I did a couple of months ago and found a network of people that I can talk to daily that help alleviate my fears and encourage me.
    Apart from that just take it one day at a time, you're not supposed to be fully prepared right now we have three years to get ready for the world of nursing, just try and learn a bit more each day and well both slowly get there

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  • Hi Lucy!
    I started my nursing course in September and I still have moments of "what am I doing?!" regularly but I've made such a good group of friends that are so supportive. One thing that my cohort did was set up a facebook page for all September starters and the weekend before we began the course we met up for a few drinks to get to know each other which helped to settle nerves, especially when we realised we all felt the same about being under prepared.
    I bought Bethan Siviters The Student Nurse Handbook and even though it can't tell you what to expect exactly from your course it has given a pretty good overview of what to expect from uni and placement in general with lots of little tips from nursing students.
    Lastly I'd say don't forget to stay excited! You'll meet so many people, have so many amazing experiences and learn so much that soon all these pre-course jitters will be a distant memory :)

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  • Hi there

    Firstly, congratulations, by getting onto the course you have already been able to display the desired attributes of a student nurse. This is a good place to start, having these attributes is the foundation of your degree and will be the foundation of the nurse you will become.

    find your #nurskateers search the #tag you will find supportive students and nurses there :-)

    listen to what the tutors say to you they are there to get people through the nurse training with the best possible experience to be had

    Take some time to yourself before the course starts and go refreshed as the first semester is tough, but not so tough you wont enjoy it or get through it raring for the next

    Lastly be kind to yourself, never judge yourself by what others can do as one of my #nurskateers said "this is your journey!"

    Enjoy

    @soontobenurses

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  • FranEntwistleNT

    Congratulations to Faith Wilson | 20-Jan-2014 6:34 pm who is the winner of today's book competition with her sound advice.

    Faith, email your address to fran.entwistle@emap.com and we'll get your book in the post.

    We know you don't give advice to win books, but it's nice to be rewarded when you do something nice.

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  • Keir Robertson

    Hey Lucy - I don't have much in the way of advice to give as I myself have only just applied to 2 courses which lead to nursing degress, however I can say that I feel exactly the same way you do so don't worry too much as you're not the only one with these concerns. I would say just make sure you apply for funding/bursaries and everything else with plenty time to spare and make an appointment with your college/uni's guidance team if you have any major concerns. Also, a good idea might be to try and get some volunteering in a health or care setting , I'm currently applying to volunteer with the Red Cross. It might help to boost your confidence and skills. Best of luck with the course! :)

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