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Take it from me - the future of nursing is bright


Ignore the negativity and bad press - the future of nursing is in good hands. Nursing Times resident student nurse Katrina Michelle Rowan has plenty of reasons to be cheerful.

My cohort is GREAT. Wondering to write my next blog about, I laughed with my friend about simply writing it about our own cohort. But I want to share with everyone just how good it is to be a student nurse.  There has been so much negativity and bad press concerning nursing students recently, and sometimes the brilliant things are overlooked. 

I can honestly say that embarking on my nurse training has been one of the most positive and rewarding experiences of my life. My cohort has approximately 120 students in it, in my study group there are 21 of us. We are an eclectic group, coming from a wide range of backgrounds, a wide range of ages and a wide range of life experiences. 

Over the past few two years we have celebrated births, marriages, and milestone birthdays together. We have also said goodbye to members of our group who decided to leave or take some time out from the course. We have supported each other through marriage hicccups and break-ups, we have laughed together, cried together, celebrated together and commiserated together. 

We have watched each other develop and grow into nurses. We have bonded as a group in a way that I never thought was possible.  We care about each other and have made friends that will stay with us for the rest of our lives. 

I know just how hard my colleagues and I have worked to get to this point. This doesn’t just apply to my group at the University of Central Lancashire, I think each and every student deserves recognition and respect for the hard work, determination, passion, enthusiasm and hours of studying that being a student nurse involves. 

When I graduate I will be so proud to share that moment with all the students that started this journey with me back in April 2008. I have been lucky enough to work with some amazing and inspiring qualified nurses while progressing through my course. 

During the past two years I have also been lucky enough to meet some amazing & inspiring students who have given me courage and supported me through the rough days. I truly believe that if my small group of student nurses is even just a tiny reflection of the dedication of nursing students across the country, then I would be proud to work with any one of them when I qualify. 


Readers' comments (14)

  • i am glad you are having a good time depends where you are based not all trainee nurses are experiencing the same good experience you have had. but instead are experiencing complete cahos regards the training constant canelations and being used as HCA when the object is to train as a nurse is not a good experience.

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  • yes its good to hear someone being positive but i would wait a while to make such a dramatic statement about nursing.
    perhaps when you are a staff nurse in charge of a ward and you dont have enough staff and resources and battling against the system exhausted day in day out with the same battle you may review your stance !!!!!!!!!!

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  • i felt exactly like you as a student what happened ??
    not enough resources managers who dont give a dam about standards but only want to tick boxes.
    just listen to the news if you dont beleive me hospitals have to mark them selves to get stars and standards what a laugh so many lie blatantly listen to patients i hear the complaints every day

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  • I have just finished my training after a rollercoaster 3 years! I've had a great time training and cant wait for my first post as a staff nurse, but that is the problem - in the area I live, there are just no jobs for newly qualifieds! It has put a dampener on the elation of being qualified and achieving my goal! I hope to secure a job soon - wish me luck!

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  • Regarding Madelines post,the bureucracy and' 'ticking of boxes' today is horrendous. I am pleased I am not 'nursing' today, as I was the type of nurse who cared only about the well being of my patients and couldn't give a damn about inventories of belongings,although I had to do it,or whether a patient was shown round the ward as if they were arriving at a hotel. Most patients, if they are at the stage of being hospitalised, are too sick to care and are happy as long as they know how to get to the toilet and the rest can follow.Their priority is getting time from their nurses to care about them and listen to concerns and not whether they are branded like a package in transit with first and foremost all forms in place.

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  • OH! Regarding above post,When I was a staff nurse I suggested patients signed one form that stated all belongings brought in to the ward were at patients own risk. It would save time and hastle and most agreed with it, but it was never passed. After all,why make things less time consuming. There could be so many ideas that would save time with the uneccessary box ticking,or would that be too much like common sense in our red tape obsessiveness theese days.

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  • Having joined uclan just 6 months behind you as a male Student Adult Nurse and having since become one of those special band of people who know you and are proud to have you stand beside me during not only my training but also through my journey personally, I would love to thank you for putting forward the realisation of just how special it is to be a Student Nurse.

    I too have found my first 18 months an experience that will live with me forever but for all of the bad days that I endure, the pride that I feel when I wear my bright white tunic and read the words 'uclan Student Nurse' means that when I do receive worthy praise from a patient or a thank you from one of my fellow colleagues from an act that has benefitted them, trained or otherwise, really does make it all worthwhile.

    Katy, I am one of those amazing and inspired student's that stand proudly next to you on this journey of discovery and yet do you know what the best bit is?

    We’ve only just begun.

    Melvin Nicholson, Preston

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  • been qualified over a year now and unable to secure job in scotland as few hosp vacancys.... feels like i have wasted 3 years good training!! my days of retail continue!

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  • I'm sorry but not everyones experience is as positive as yours. I too was a UCLAN student before I eventually switched universities, and it almost made me quit.

    Being a student Nurse is not easy, there are ups and downs as you say, but there is also three years of 70 or 80 hour weeks, very little pay (stressful when the mortgage needs paying) hard placements, steep learning curves and emotional and physical stress and exhaustion and burn out. We all go through this, some make it, a lot don't. But at UCLAN this was made worse by a complete lack of support when personal problems hit home and made training almost impossible. I suffered a culture of bullying amongst a couple of members of staff in particular and incompetence from the admin and support departments.

    I almost quit because of this appaling university. (And bear in mind that I had a degree before I started Nursing so I had another University to compare it to).

    I since moved to another uni and completed my training. This wasn't without it's own stresses but at least it was better than UCLAN.

    But despite all the flowery, superfluous back slapping going on on this thread, let us remember that a lot of students suffer throughout their training and if they finish, a lot feel burned out, demoralised and ready to quit.

    I am glad I finished my training and I am glad to be a Nurse (especially since I won't be working in the NHS much longer and will be moving to Oz!) but this is DESPITE my training, not because of it.

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  • I agree with the above and it does depend where you train and the mentors that you have. I also agree with the comment regarding staff shortages and exhaustion.
    To the nurse who qualified a year past in Scotland hope you find a post soon

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