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    hi,
    im 19 years old and so grateful to have the opportunity to study nursing at a young age. started uni in September 2016 now its January 2017 and I'm about to go on my first placement soon. at first I was exited and still am excited but the fear and nerves are starting to kick in.

    many people on the course are older and mature and have previous experience as a HCA but I've literally just come out of college. I chose nursing after having a nurse come in to speak at college about her journey into nursing, I really felt inspired and though it was something I could do as I didn't really have much of a career plan after a levels before this.

    have a passion for caring and supporting people in many ways even though I don't have any healthcare experience.
    people often say that ill make a good nurse as I am quite caring and compassionate but I just worry that I won't fit in or be any good

    can anyone reassure me that it will be okay? would love to hear about others who started with no experience and how you've found the course

    thank you
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    (Original post by abigaillaing)
    hi,
    im 19 years old and so grateful to have the opportunity to study nursing at a young age. started uni in September 2016 now its January 2017 and I'm about to go on my first placement soon. at first I was exited and still am excited but the fear and nerves are starting to kick in.

    many people on the course are older and mature and have previous experience as a HCA but I've literally just come out of college. I chose nursing after having a nurse come in to speak at college about her journey into nursing, I really felt inspired and though it was something I could do as I didn't really have much of a career plan after a levels before this.

    have a passion for caring and supporting people in many ways even though I don't have any healthcare experience.
    people often say that ill make a good nurse as I am quite caring and compassionate but I just worry that I won't fit in or be any good

    can anyone reassure me that it will be okay? would love to hear about others who started with no experience and how you've found the course

    thank you
    Hi,

    I'm qualified now, but started out in nursing with no experience. Don't worry about comparing yourself to those who have experience. As I've pointed out in another post, just because they have caring experience doesn't mean they're necessarily any good at it. I, as a qualified, have had to correct student nurses with previous care experience on some very basic things before now. It doesn't give them the edge they, or you, think it does.

    You will have to learn the ward/clinical area routine, but this will come quite quickly, and obviously will vary slightly from placement to placement.

    Make sure you're well prepared for the placement. Give them a ring a few weeks in advance, to find out a bit more about the placement, who your mentors are, where to go on your first day, any pre-reading they would like you to do etc. (Plan all the questions you're gunna ask, and have a pen & paper to write down the answers!)

    When on placement, ask lots of questions (Time them appropriately - i.e. not in the middle of a nurse administering medications etc), go to each shift with one or two ideas of what you would like to learn/achieve that day, and do as much additional reading as you can - this will really supplement your practical learning on placement as sometimes we don't have time to go through much theory with you, so it helps for you to be proactive in this. Also make sure you ask to spend time with members of the MDT such as physios and dietitians etc.

    Hope your first placement is enjoyable!
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    its normal to be nervous. experience would have assisted you in what your likely to face. but you dont have it so forget about it. if you have a real desire to assist folks then you will do well. a word of advice listen to the hca they will know the job backwards. if you dont know something or you have questions please ask your mentor or any staff. show interest in them and they will be more likely to help you. patients are not always nice in fact some can be a pain. if you get stick its not you its the uniform they are moaning at.
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    I wouldn't worry about not having any healthcare experience. I had not long turned 18 when I started nursing so I had not even had a great deal of life experience or job experience in general. When I went on my first placement I did feel overwhelmed at the beginning and I thought several times "how am I going to remember all of this?" Surprisingly you do remember things and as you learn and gain more experience it becomes a lot easier. At the beginning it may feel like those who have healthcare experience prior to starting nursing are progressing faster than you because they may already know terminology, ward routines, have washed, toileted and fed patients before etc. but by the end of the course you will all be equal. Experience helps but as PaediatricStN says, you will be fresh and new to nursing so you will not have adopted bad habits and can be easier to teach than an experience HCA stuck in the mud thinking their way is best.

    I was the youngest in my cohort and I now have 4.5 years post qualification experience and got my first band 6 job at the grand old age of 25 Age and prior experience are irrelevant really when it comes to nursing
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    I'm 31, so a bit older, but myself and a friend (18, straight from school with no nursing experience) have just finished our first placement. It's been hard, and a steep learning curve, but it's by no means impossible! Ask your mentor to shadow HCAs for the first few weeks to get the fundamentals of nursing care right. Then, as you only need to spend min 40% of your time with your mentor use the rest of your time with other members of the team to get an overall impression of how nursing functions in your area.

    I have a nursing blog which has detailed my journey literally from application to today, my last week of my first ever placement, if you'd like to have a read to get an idea of how I managed it let me know!
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    (Original post by coffeecrumpets)
    I have a nursing blog which has detailed my journey literally from application to today, my last week of my first ever placement, if you'd like to have a read to get an idea of how I managed it let me know!
    This sounds interesting! Can I get a link?

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    (Original post by abigaillaing)
    hi,
    im 19 years old and so grateful to have the opportunity to study nursing at a young age. started uni in September 2016 now its January 2017 and I'm about to go on my first placement soon. at first I was exited and still am excited but the fear and nerves are starting to kick in.

    many people on the course are older and mature and have previous experience as a HCA but I've literally just come out of college. I chose nursing after having a nurse come in to speak at college about her journey into nursing, I really felt inspired and though it was something I could do as I didn't really have much of a career plan after a levels before this.

    have a passion for caring and supporting people in many ways even though I don't have any healthcare experience.
    people often say that ill make a good nurse as I am quite caring and compassionate but I just worry that I won't fit in or be any good

    can anyone reassure me that it will be okay? would love to hear about others who started with no experience and how you've found the course

    thank you
    Hi, this time three years ago I was in exactly the same position. Nerves and fear are all completely normal and I still experience them before starting a new placement, I think if you didn't have them you should be more worried.

    Despite not having any experience I fit in well, most mentors were happy that I didn't have any HCA experience, after all you are training to be a Nurse not a HCA and the roles are obviously different.

    In some ways it is better to not have any experience because then your initial training and introduction to a hospital setting can be of an exemplary standard, rather than a brief introduction to the ward environment. I found this to be the case, anyway.

    I wish you well for the rest of your course, good luck!
 
 
 
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