Ten Top Tips for student nurses

It is 100% official, I have finished first year with flying colours and enrolled ready for my second year starting 15th January 2018! How exciting?!

I thought I would write my top tips for any new students out there. Some things I have learnt along the way that may help you? Somethings I wish I was told when I very first started university.

  • Top tip 1: Do not be afraid to say hello and make new friends! Life will be so much better with friends. Even if you make friends with the whole year or just that one person. Also, if you see someone alone… go say hi! They might need you. If it wasn’t for a girl in my class, I would probably be sat alone too right now haha! I was so grateful for someone to come and say hi.

 

  • Top tip 2: Get yourself a lot of paper and some colouful pens to write with! Treat yourself to some lovely stationary because you will be making A LOT of notes in lectures. They don’t have to be expensive either. Cheap and cheerful (we are students haha). If you don’t study by nice colours like me, then do what you have to do 🙂 But you will need to make notes…  

 

  • Top tip 3: Get yourself a didctaphone if possible, or borrow one, or record lecturs using an app on your phone. I didn’t… BUT luckily some other students in my class did and managed to share it via email to me. This is really good to listen back to important info and make your notes at home if you’d rather do that. Good for not missing anything in class too!

 

  • Top tip 4: UK students (not sure if it is the same in other countries) but go to your local pharmacy and tell them this:

“Hello my name is…. and I am a student nurse, I was wondering if you had any old BNF (british national formulary) book that I could have please?”

If you don’t know what a BNF is…. this is your BIBLE for medications! You will have to learn medications inside and out and this book is the official medications book that will have everything in it. I presonally like to have an actual book. You can also download the BNF app to your mobile phone for free. Either way, you WILL need it. BNF online

  • Top tip 5: Make every second count! You don’t want to finish the three years, qulify and look back and regret not doing enough, or wishing you had done such and such… do it today! Make every second of university life count. Get involved in everything you can. It will really keep you motivated and on the ball. I am a Student Academic Leader, Royal College of Nursing (RCN) – Student Information Officer, Health editor of the new magazine we will have (my idea which is coming to life yay!) and a hello my name is ambassador (Links below for these for more info) and YES of course there is time for all of this whilst nursing 🙂 These things are done at univeristy and from home too or on my days off.

#HelloMyNameis     

Student Information Officer – RCN

Student Academic Leader

 

  • Top tip 6: Make the most of your time off! You are about to start univeristy and it is going to get hectic for the first few months until you find your feet and get organised. Make the most of your weekends, enjoy life, sleeping and relaxing. Nursing is tough but it so rewarding and 100% worth it. It will consume your time, you will be working shift patterns opposite to anyone that isn’t a nursing student so get out there and make the most of it now. But always remember to enjoy your time as a student nurse too. Balance is key.

 

  • Top tip 7: Please please and please, go and seek help if you struggle with anything! I hated academic writting, I got 55% in my first assignment and cried a lot… Personally, I didn’t and don’t want to be a half way student. If you are only just scrapping by there is a chance you may not pass your next assignment / exam. So go to extra tutorials, go to your personal tutor, book in for one to one sessions with your personal development department (if you have this, but you should have something similar). There is so much help out there you just need to seek it. Also go online and search help with assignments, maths etc if thats what you struggle with. I found some great linking words that really helped me. I personally found the  Youtube channel: Khan Academy really helpful for my physiology revision.

 

  • Top tip 8: Get yourself some good handcream! You will be washing your hands non stop whilst out in practice and those hands are going to get dry. My personal favourite is from LUSH,  the salted coconut hand scrub followed by the hand guru hand cream, this really makes your hands feel like they’ve been and had a spa day. Other products are available elsewhere 🙂 Get them on your Christmas / birthday list. Lush hand care site

 

  • Top tip 9: Bag yourself some comfortable shoes! Comfort over fashion always. You will be doing long shifts whilst on your placement. You will need some good shoes. Clarks have the most amazing range of shoes for nurses. They are a little bit expensive but they will last the three years and more. They are like little clouds to walk in. As long as your shoes are covering your whole foot, leather, black or navy and comfortable you’re onto a winner. Clarks shoes online

 

  • Top tip 10: Get yourself organised; plan and prepare everything. Do your assignments well in advance, revise revise and revise for exams, know where you’re going and when. Call your placement around 2 weeks before hand to arrange your shifts. Ensure you have enough fluids and food for energy!

 

And that’s my top tips for first year! Just enjoy it everyone. Here’s my next vlog for anyone preparing to apply for university. My Vlog

 

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Google image (2017)

 

 

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34 years old and finally achieving my dream of becoming a nurse.

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