Random Pieces of Advice for Nursing Students

Sunday, February 5, 2012 0 comments

  I would just like to share some of my experiences, more often difficulties as a student nurse, and how  you can overcome them (because I did not, at certain things and time), in my own point of view. You see, I don't have someone in a higher batch that I could talk with nursing stuff, so at times I'm at lost on what to do. I know people, but I'm too shy to ask them. So if you're having the same situation that I had, I could be your "Ate".

 I am not sure if this would apply to all (esp. in other countries), but here it goes:

I thought college was easy, because I grew seeing my brothers go to college, with just a ballpen and a notebook. It was totally different from my experience. I go to school with a backpack full of big and heavy nursing books.

With great power really comes great responsibility. The power to take care of others is really a big responsibility so it really has its difficulties starting from the point of learning how to. In Nursing School, you'll have your Ups and Downs. It will be tiring and definitely exhausting but fun and exciting at the same time.

Of course, you need to study! DUH! Haha!

I find it really difficult to be consistent in studying. The first two years of my college, I was somehow coerced of studying because of my scholarship, when it's gone, I little by little neglected my study habits. Also, I have other problems as well, because it is my first time to be somehow independent because I live in an apartment sort of place. I get lonely at times and those kind of things are just not the right moment for studying.

Don't be like me. You'll regret it eventually. Learn to love studying. I always get amaze when I learn something new when I read my books. The feeling of your working neurons overwhelmed with great things you did not know before, but now you do!

Read, or just browse your books before the day of your lecture. You would be surprise on how you could easily follow your lecturer and say in your mind "Yun pala yung ibig sabihin nung binasa ko" or you could even ask something you did not understand in your book.

I learned this in our English class, when we're asked to present Desiderata. This is one of my favorite lines "If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter, for always there will greater and lesser persons than yourself". I actually really can't help it at some time, the comparing part (in terms of grades and many other things),  but I eventually learned to not to not compare, but to just compare but not get bitter. If you get my point. I'm pertaining to comparing scores, grades, study habits, and other comparable things. 

I know it sounds cliché, but this is really an important matter for us students, and in my personal experience, for us student nurses.

Make sure that all the papers (Registration Forms, PRC Forms, Checklists, Brown Papers, even receipts) given to you, starting from first year, are well kept and organized so that when the time comes when you need it the most, you would not be doing a raid of all your past papers and stuff.

This also includes being organized with your reviewers, handouts as well, have the habit of organizing it right away by subject, (you could have it book/paper bound, or just put in in an envelope and label it) because in the time of your RLE, you might be needing it and most importantly during your enrichment, Competency Appraisal, and reviews (When at times you don't have the time to read on a book, you could have your past handouts to read. But, reading the BOOK is still the best, because usually handouts are merely outlines with no explanations).


Make a TO DO LIST! This includes studying!

This also is regarding PRC forms, Greenbook (Skills Booklet), Checklists, Preference Card for OR cases, OR/DR Folders. Do it right away, so that if you would be having problems, you could still be able to comply with it as early as possible. Usually others would wait since their clinical instructors would not give them deadlines, but I assure you, they would not be the one having the most burden in the end, but you. So include them on your Things To Do List!

Regarding PRC Forms, this one was really difficult to accomplish when you don't prioritize it right away. Looking for the OR or DR nurse is not that simple because they have shifting schedules and at times when you're just so lucky, none of your partner nurses would be there! (sarcastic smile)

Every after shift, always make sure that your RLE group schedules a date for your greenbook signing at times when your clinical instructor would not. This is important especially at times when your clinical instructor decides to work abroad or other place.

This is regarding people you meet, so that you would not be saying "Sabi ni Ano", " May nagsabi sa amin". It is also your responsibility to ask the right people and not merely relying on rumors about certain things.

To add, at times, what usually happens is that you think you forget their faces already but when you see them already, it's starting to get  back to you. "Ayun siya!". But, it's not always like that. Okay, I'm guilty of this. One time, I already can't remember the face of the OR nurse I scrubbed with (It's the mask's fault! Kidding) that when it’s about time to have my PRC forms signed, I would ask other classmate if they are familiar with him/her, so that I would not be embarrassed to personally asked them if a certain nurse is on duty, not knowing that he or she is that person (Yup, that happens!). I easily forget faces or sometimes I tend to jumble their faces in my mind. My DR signing experience is even worse, because we are supervised by our clinical instructor and at  times I really don't know who the nurse on duty is, so I would just remember their faces but not know who they are. Gosh , the embarrassment!


During RLE duties, if you really don't know it, ask! Ask your clinical instructor or the staff nurse. Remember,  safety first, always think of your patients and what you may do to them. When you have problems regarding your academics and duties, assert yourself and talk to people that could help you. 

Communication is a must in very relationship. Nurse to your patient, nurse to other health care team members. More importantly, you to your RLEmates. In our college, we are in block sections so our classmates at the start of our second year will be the same up to fourth year. This also applies to the RLE group, just with slight changes because from 5 RLEs per class we went down to four. Going to my point, your RLEmates will be your sort of barkada, your buddies forever. It is a must that you have a good, no, great relationship with them, unless you wanted to have a pretty difficult time ahead of you.

This is my RLE group. We had our good times and bad times. Still having them, actually. That's normal I guess, what is important that in the end you'll still have one another. I love you guys!


Learnings from mistakes are usually the ones which stay, usually because of the accompanying consequences. This applies to everything, I think. Promise to yourself not to make a habit of committing the same mistakes over and over again. Just like what they say, it is not anymore a mistake/sin, it's already your choice.

If you failed a test because you did not study, study the next time. If you were late on a duty and had make up for two days, be an early bird next time. And so on...but that is not the case always...

The usual alibi "Tao lang nagkakamali" would not justify you if you have committed a mistake in the care of your patient and put him/her in danger or even worse when there will be no next time to make-up for it.


At times they would require you to do this, attend here and stuff like those, things that you don’t usually want to do or go to. But always think, that they just want the best for you.  They extend classes because they want us to learn things, they're lending us their time and imparting us with their knowledge at the most, they don't suspend duties because it is an opportunity to gain experience.

Do something because you want to, and for the love for our college and our future profession.

If you have problems regarding certain things, talk them nicely, with respect. They'll be considerate, just as long as you make them understand your side.

You might not agree with me and say that your C.I.s are like this and that. I'll just tell you to do things the nursing way, follow the process, start with assessment! Assess your self first, maybe there is a reason on you why your CI is like that.

Well, I think, that's about it, I hope this entry helped you in some way. I'll try to share some nursing experiences again soon. 

Let me just share some of my RLE pictures I edited before, of course with my RLEmates!

Summer of 2009: Skills Laboratory 

First DR duty at Tondo Medical Center

First MS Ward Duty

CHN Experiences

2011: Fourth year 

Graduation is fast approaching, WaaaaaH!


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