If there’s one thing you can guarantee in studying nursing, it’s variety! For this post, I wanted to show you the sorts of things that student nurses do on a typical day.
I started the day with breakaway training. Student nurses have a lot of mandatory training to complete, and breakaway teaches us how to protect ourselves if somebody starts behaving aggressively. It’s a lot of fun, potentially lifesaving and totally exhausting!
Once we’d finished throwing each other around a padded room, I caught a lift with a colleague to the site of my next placement. On each placement, student nurses are assigned a mentor to coach and supervise them, and it’s good practice to meet these people before placement starts. My new mentor and I will work together over the 12 weeks of my placement in an acute inpatient unit for women, and we discussed my learning objectives and his expectations for the placement, plus I got a tour of the site and met some of the team.
After our meeting, I caught the bus back to the university for a PALS debrief. PALS is the Peer Assisted Learning Scheme, and involves senior students helping more junior students to get the most out of their learning and to deepen their understanding of course topics. After every PALS session, the leaders have a debrief, where we reflect on what went well, what could be better, and what we can do in the next session. It’s a lovely opportunity to talk frankly and learn from each other.
I then met a group of my friends in the library for some group study and some preparation for an upcoming roleplay assessment.
Finally, the day finished with a society event: a pumpkin and pamper night to raise money for Beat, the eating disorders charity. The nursing society caters to nursing students of all fields, and runs events based around socialising, fundraising and wellbeing. We carved pumpkins, played Twister and ate cupcakes, and generally took some time out to be silly and look after one another. It highlights for me how much the people we study and train with become our family over the course, and I would do anything for these future nurses.
We’re all busy on this course, but it’s fulfilling and varied… and we wouldn’t have it any other way!