Louise reflects on how her determination to improve her confidence in second year has taken her further than she ever imagined
Starting the second year of my nursing course has been hectic. We had just two weeks in university after the summer break and then were straight out to an eight week placement block.
Needless to say I have found the transition from “you’re a first year” to “now you’re a second year” a little daunting.
Nevertheless, I decided during the summer holidays to push myself beyond my comfort zone during my second year. I struggle with public speaking, so this was an area I wanted to pursue to gain the confidence to stand up in class and to delegate while on placement.
I put myself up for elections as a faculty rep of my school and was over the moon to win the election. Being the Adult Student Nursing Times editor allows me to be a voice for the student nurse community in general, helping others and advising about placements, juggling studies etc. Being a faculty rep also gives me this opportunity, but on a university level. I have also been appointed a course rep for my group - this is great as I can use my experience in my other roles to advise my group on issues within our own campus.
Many people have suggested I might be taking too much on: “how will you cope with your studies, placements and family life?”
But I seem to thrive on having lots of projects on the go. I have even taken up the role of a caremaker, something I am really excited about and I hope to encourage more students and nurses while on placement to join. I am also in discussions with my university about a project I am hoping to get launched - an opportunity for both the university and student nurses.
So, yes, I have taken a lot on, but I am finding it manageable. I feel as long as you prioritise the work load, essays and exams etc then it is possible to have other projects, and these can really help with your confidence and self-esteem.
Being able to stand up in front of a class full of new students and talk to them about the adult nursing course is something I have done a couple of times now, but I would never have imagined myself doing just that 18 months ago. I am presenting to the new students at my university in January on my faculty rep role, something that is giving me a little anxiety, but at the same time I am looking forward to doing it.
I find I am pushing my boundaries a little each time.
I cannot wait to see what 2014 will hold, and I hope to share my journey with you all and maybe inspire some other student nurses to take charge of your confidence and seek out new projects. I am really happy with how I have improved confidence-wise and I intend to grab every opportunity that comes my way!
Merry Christmas everyone and may 2014 be a prosperous and enjoyable year for all of us student nurses!
Louise Goodyear is Student NT’s Adult Branch Student Editor