Today I am delighted to bring you some advice from a newly qualified nurse, who also graduated from The University of Manchester
To all my fellow nursing students… the toughest students around! I have recently qualified as a staff nurse in October (scary right ) and currently work on a diabetic specialist ward- the first job I applied for as I went through general trust recruitment and would recommend this to any of you who aren’t sure what area you would like to work I in yet. I thought I would pass on my experience as a Manchester student and as a newly qualified staff nurse 🙂
First of all I am going to bullet point any learning experiences or notes I have for all of you rather than put it in a long winded paragraph as frankly we all have to read enough rambling on of other people whilst at uni, especially if you are currently writing your dissertation, you may never want to read again!
Student Life: -Don’t give up!
1-It is a very hard but very rewarding career. At times I felt like quitting with the stress of placement, uni work and trying to hold down a part time job. You are all doing so well to have made it this far, and we are all here to help and support you. On a side note please ignore all the nurses on placement who say:”why on earth have you picked to do nursing ” or my favourite ” oo you should have been a doctor, that’s much better money”.
2-In reference to part time work – I worked at a roster aunt long hours at weekend for my first and second years and it was just too much ! I would advise to join nhsp as a HCA as soon as you have done 6 weeks in a hospital setting . If like me nhsp keeps crashing for you and is taking 6 months to get an interview consider agency HCA who I joined with for my last year – if anyone wants any information on that I will leave my email 🙂
3-Do your work in plenty of time ! Especially your dissertation, I left mine till the last minute and boy was it stressful . Also a tip for assignments, the reference app thing on Microsoft word is very good.
4-If you are a complete newbie, invest in comfy shoes,your feet will ache after long shifts on your feet all day and please don’t wash your tunic and pants together, they go a very odd colour haha.
5- whilst on placement attend all of the training sessions you can by booking onto them at the education centre, they make up your hours which is good, especially if you aren’t to keen on your placement. I also found it handy to carry a small notepad in my pocket to jot useful things down whilst on placement.
Moving on… Newly qualified:
1- I am not going to lie, it is scary as anything when you first qualify, when someone shouts nurse, you look down and it’s you ! It is normal to doubt your capabilities, question if your cut out for this or why on earth have I decided to do this? ITS OK & VERY VERY NORMAL. Every nurse you see on the ward has all been there , you are going from little to full blown responsibly and that’s scary however the nurses in my experience are all so supportive and understanding. They know you are new to the job and don’t expect as soon as your graduation cap comes off , super nurse to bound through the doors, and any nurse who tries to put you down for not knowing something because your newly qualified, shame on them , no one knows everything there ever is to know about nursing and on a side note, revaluation is coming around, we have had 3 years worth of cross referencing and reflection for our portfolios, so the tables will soon turn 🙂 I would recommend getting a job where there is a preceptorship programme as that’s what I wish I had done differently.
2- Stand your ground: if there is something you are not sure of or not happy with, just ask or even question a doctor as to why he’s doing such a thing, no one is going to think your stupid and you would rather be safe than sorry (we all make mistakes, even doctors!) At the end of the day no one can make you do anything you don’t want to, it’s your pin on the line. Have confidence in your own judgement , most of the time you will be right 🙂
Good luck in your training , which ever stage you may be in, you will all make fantastic nurses and hope to work with you in the future.
If anyone has any questions they would like to ask about anything this is my email@example.com
All the best , keep up the good work:)