The choice to become a nurse is a popular one, and it makes sense! With the high salary, flexible working hours, and the knowledge that you’re helping those in need, it’s a role that provides a satisfying career.
Before jumping into a nursing school application, however, there are a few things to consider – here’s what you need to know before applying.
The Variety of Education
The variety of education matches up with the number of different nursing roles available. As well as the usual associate’s degree many nursing students do, there are other programs that allow nurses to pursue specialties down the line.
Plus, you don’t necessarily have to go down the usual route of an associate’s degree to qualify as a nurse. If you already have a degree, but you want to change your path to nursing, then have a look at the top accelerated nursing programs to become qualified in just a year. Plus, you also have the option to study from home, which suits those who need to work alongside their studies.
You’ll Need Good Grades
Getting onto nursing programs isn’t a walk in the park. That makes sense, as nursing is an intense career that comes with a lot of responsibility, so you must be capable, organized, and intelligent.
Nursing school is competitive, so make sure you have an edge when applying by attaining good grades. Think of it this way – the hard work you put into your GPA will help you put in the work necessary to become an excellent nurse!
You’ll Do a Lot of Reading
When applying to nursing school, you’ll probably have visions of working in hospitals and being tested on your spoken word, but there is also a lot of reading involved. Although a lot of nursing work is physical, you’ll also do heavy research, so make sure you’re prepared for this side of education.
Friendships are Important
Friendships are essential in any area of life, but this is especially true for nurses. When you go through a difficult day, or you need an extra hand, your nursing friends are the ones to turn to. They will see you smile, laugh, shed a tear, and will be the ones to pick you up when you feel overwhelmed.
Those who don’t work in healthcare don’t fully understand what it’s like, making it even more crucial to make friends as soon as you enter nursing school. Plus, there’ll be there for post-work socializing!
You’ll Need to Work Independently
While your tutors will provide you with course material to share in nursing school, you must also be willing to work independently. Before you apply, make sure you’re prepared to use your initiative while taking full responsibility for your studies. In the end, it is only you that can pull you through.
The Advancement Options
Some nurses are content with staying as RNs for the duration of their careers, while others prefer to advance. You might not know exactly where you want to end up before applying to nursing school, but it is still a good idea to think about where you might end up in the future.
There are plenty of options when it comes to advancing as a nurse, so whether you want to become a nurse-midwife, a nurse anesthetist, or a family nurse practitioner, there are courses that will get you there.
Self-Care is Crucial
No nurse will ever tell you that the career is easy. Sometimes the patients are difficult, sometimes the workload is overwhelming, and sometimes the shift seems to drag on into what feels like days. There is a reason nurse burnout is such a prevalent thing, but don’t let this stop you – by acting on self-care, you can ensure you stay motivated, healthy, and successful.
Before you start nursing school, make sure you know the best ways to look after yourself. This self-care could include spending time alone, exercising more often, or chatting to your friends from home.
Being Prepared is Key
No matter how naturally gifted a person is if they show up to nursing school without the right equipment and at the wrong time, they end up behind everybody else. The key to thriving throughout your education is to be prepared. It’ll show your tutors that you’re motivated and will ensure you don’t fall behind because of something you’ve forgotten.
If you have trouble with organization, then this is something you must conquer before applying to nursing school. Keeping a diary, packing your bag the night before, and setting a bedtime are all habits that’ll help you stay on top of your studies.
You Can Always Bounce Back
Everybody has a bad day – even the student who passes with flying colors and never misses a class. If you’ve failed a test, missed a couple of lectures, or forgotten to hand in an assignment, try not to panic, as there is always room to bounce back.
Of course, making this a habit would become a problem, but don’t beat yourself up over a couple of mistakes. Just remember to email your tutor in these circumstances and let them know you’re willing to put in the effort to catch up!
It Won’t Always be Smooth-Sailing
Nursing school isn’t easy, and nor should it be. After all, if you’re going to be caring for those in need, you should be well-educated, knowledgeable, and organized. Before applying to nursing school, remember that your time there will sometimes be difficult, so you must be determined to push through the tough days.
The Career is More than Worth it
No matter how hard nursing school gets, remember that the career you’re striving toward is satisfying, fulfilling, and helps many people. On the days where you feel overwhelmed, remember what your end goal is and let that push you through.
Applying to nursing school is a huge step and is one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. If you are motivated, prepared, and passionate about helping others, then it is one of the best decisions you could ever make.