As everything in life, there are challenges. Nursing as a course of study and as a career has its similar way of throwing challenges whether we accept it or not. Not only nursing, but any courses which are offered at the tertiary level. As, such students face the challenge continuously of trying to find time outside of perusing their course, having sufficient finances, family support and the struggle adjusting to nursing care in the clinical setting has for years been a constant struggle for many nursing students while studying. In situations such as being a single mother or a married with children, it opens the avenues for one to juggle the household and children at possible delicate ages, often times can be perplexing to balance their already limited time. The constant up-keep with the demands of time by nursing school and making time for everyone and everything can a be a big challenge. However, solutions are often explored to correct the impact of these issues.
Often times, planning daily activities, making meals; breakfast before going off to school or nursery, and dinner in the evenings, laundry and other household chores and errand can get into the way of student studies. At times they fail to find the time to make a balance meal as their families would be used to and now becomes a “grab-n-go” situation, which in the future can have some effect at a later date. Solutions, though not easy to arrive at, but steadfast in working with the situation. Prioritizing can help and as suggested in an article written by Michele Wojciechowski, who recounts that “ Students need to set their priorities straight and decide how they are going to organize their time well.” (Wojciechowski, 2017). This means that, choose the things that are most important to you and your course and work at it. Another factor that can contribute to challenges are for the persons who work part-time. Even though it is additional income, it becomes a struggle to balance the little time that is already available. Fortunately for some, it has been encouraged to work in a setting which offers similar work environment to that of your course of study so that it all becomes a continuous work experience for the student.
Furthermore, Wojciechowsk (2017), suggests that “Not having enough time can be an issue for student nurses.” (Wojciechowski, 2017). This highlights that persons facing older life challenges such as working and school, can cause stress and overwhelming, and should continue to find solutions to the issue. Financially, the reality is that school can require a lot. Additionally, school is not the only obligation a student may have and need to financially secure. There is rent, transportation, utilities and children/family expenses. Fortunately, some students are able to afford the tuition in cash and does not have to resort to student loans, grants or scholarship that at times, are not qualified for.
Family support is a very important encouragement during school and if not facilitated can lead to disharmony. Having persons to encourage you and the decisions you have made may help the journey be easier. Family support factors in a variety of assistance such as picking up the kids from school, fetching the laundry at the cleaners, make the children a meal, are all ways of increasing study and assignment time. This may be a way to ease the stress off the student during studying. In the journal article by Collette Loftin (2012), it identifies that women with children sacrifices their study time for family time and often face discrimination when they resort to sacrificing their family time for study time, they are often criticized (Collette Loftin, 2012). This leads to a break in the emotional and family support and can lead to barriers such as poor matriculation to complete the course due to the stressors that are faced.
Nursing offers a heavy theoretic and clinical expectation. Professionalism and organizational role, as well as nursing practice and process are tools learned while venturing into the clinical setting. These actions and development “builds higher morale, stronger cohesion and strong partnership between students and senior nurses.” (Houghton, 2014). This means that when students are exposed to this form of education in the clinical are, it fosters the right working attitude that student and seniors must share in order to make a better workforce and place in the future.
The reality and culture shock however approaches when trying to grasp new patient care processes, nursing procedures and basic nursing concepts. All these expectations are usually experienced over a period of weeks, and sadly not enough for the students to make a full transition (Houghton, 2014). As such students fail the clinical area due to anxiety which unfortunately arise from stress and results in a negative impact on socialization in the clinical setting between student nurses and staff nurses.
In short, one can admit that in addition to other courses offered at the tertiary level, nursing too has the characteristic of being very challenging. With the stress of lack of adequate time to facilitate life other than nursing school, inadequate finances, poor family support and inability to adjust to the clinical situation are all issues that student nurses face while perusing their course of study.
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