1) Where is your placement?
Find out! We all get our placement allocations over Black Board (BB). BB is an online service that allows students and faculty to share information. We all find out what date the placements are announced, some of us count down because we’re so eager/nervous to find out however, some students really don’t mind and have to be reminded to check where they are. Most of us do care, and count down, and sit there refreshing the page. I never understand why the university releases the allocations when we’re all in lectures, it must be so obvious that we sit there waiting on our phones…
2) Contact number
Next to your placement allocation the university provides you with a contact number. Don’t call yet!
3) Calling placement
Everyone generally calls placement 2/3 weeks before they start there. If you call any earlier they might not have received information about you from the University yet. You’ll be calling up very eager and they won’t have a clue who you are, when you start or who your mentor is, which can be very disheartening and get you worrying unnecessarily.
4) The phone call
I got extremely stressed about this phone call, I was petrified of saying something really silly and making a bad first impression. I’d recommend writing down what you’re going to say like I did. Something along the lines of, Hello my name is Kimberley Smith, I’m a first year student nurse calling to find out what my first shift is with you. I should be starting placement on *date*…..
5) Travel buddy?
Now you know where you are, try and see if there is somebody else on the same placement as you. There is a Facebook page made for each year, this is a good place to post and ask if anyone is near your placement.
6) Test run!
This is extremely important. You do not want to be late on your first day! Make the trip to placement, for the time you would need to be there, before your actual first day. Make sure you know what ward you are going to and how to get there, some hospitals are pretty big and confusing. You don’t want to turn up stressed out on your first day, first days are nerve wrecking to begin with.
Day before tick list
Make sure it’s clean and looks smart. Not crumpled up because it has been at the back of your wardrobe for weeks! Check it has: Your ID badge, pens, notebook and anything else you want, a pack of tissues in winter is normally a good idea.
2) Bus times
Something I would suggest is writing down your bus times in your notebook. This stops you becoming mixed up in the morning and accidentally missing your bus – trust me it happens.
Make your lunch and you better make it filling! Placement does crazy things to our stomachs, it makes us STARVING! Though, I’d recommend maybe taking some money too. Just in case, you know, you can’t cook well and the food from placement looks much more appealing.
4) Bag packing
The essential things you’ll need each day. A diary, to write your shifts in of course. You’re PAD book that Uni gives you where you record your hours and where your mentor signs. And a crucial item as you’re in Manchester, is your umbrella.
Feel fresh and relax yourself.
Make sure you take off your nail polish and rings!
Finally have an early night
You need to be awake to make the most of the day; you’ll meet lots of new people and learn lots of new things. Plus you don’t want to be constantly yawning on your first day, sometimes placement can be slow but try and not let it show!