This past year I have been working as a floor nurse and have recently taken on the role as unit charge nurse as well. I was also asked to be apart of many committees to help build and train our employees for our new charting system (Spectrum’s move to EPIC charting). In November, when we go live, I will be a resource for our nurses to come to for major questions and problems! Nothing new…..still staying extremely busy!
What is your current position, and where?
I am currently working at Spectrum Health Blodgett in East Grand Rapids. I am on a Medical/ Surgical unit.
Are there specific things/people that you feel really prepared you for success on the NCLEX, in your current position, or for the rest of your career?
All of the resources that Dr. McKenna provided us made me feel as though I was confident enough to pass the NCLEX. I started studying well before my graduate date and used a lot of the online sources provided. Throughout the program we also used HESI to show our knowledge base and the “chances of passing in that topic.” This gave us a solid foundation and exposure to NCLEX type questions. Honestly, these tests and the online practice tests were the main source of studying that I used. For me it was easier to get as much exposure to the form of the questions and the thought process that went into each question. At the end of the program, we also went through an in class review session through HESI. This was a complete overview of all that we learned or thought we knew. This was more of an eye opener of what areas we struggled in and areas that needed to be focused upon. HUGE piece of advice….DO NOT WAIT TO TAKE THE BOARDS! Study hard and just go for it. Though I was prepared there never would have been a time where I felt ready for that test!
When I had my position review in January I was told by my manager that I was one of the best new graduate nurses that she has hired based on education and patient care. This is completely due to the exposure in clinical and rigorous courses that we endured. For this I will forever be grateful to Dr. McKenna! This has helped me to advance quickly in my position and further better my career pathways.
Is there anything else that you would share that would help someone understand the identity of the program? Things that stood out about the culture of the program?
I loved the dedication that the staff had to all of the students. There was never a time where I felt as though I was left to struggle. I also enjoyed all of the opportunities that were given to us. From talking with current colleagues, I have had a number of cultural experiences that many are lacking. Everything that experienced through the program has only made me a stronger and better nurse for my patients! Though being part of the first class was stressful, I would not change it for the world!