There are many times as students when we are encouraged to reach out of our school boundaries and engage in other learning opportunities. As a nursing student this can seem daunting when you have 3 essays, a reflective journal, 2 pre-clinicals and a midterm to study for. In my first 2 years here at Nipissing these were the tasks and assignments I was mainly focused on and would only consider other opportunities in my summers off. This has changed however now that I am in third year!
In October I had the pleasure of representing Nipissing and the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario (RNAO) at the annual two day Health Quality Ontario Conference. Over my two days at the conference I engaged in a variety of plenary talks, workshops and networking. Topics that were discussed included the digitization of the patient care setting, finding joy in the work you do, First Nations care, and the Second Victim Impact and the prevalence of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in our care provider population.
Within the workshop focused on the Second Victim Impact and PTSD in our care providers population, I had a light bulb moment – one of those moments where you feel like you have just come up with an idea that is going to change the world. It occurred to me that as student nurses we aren’t always taught about being proactive about our mental health and dealing with the things we see. As part of a Health Quality Ontario initiative, Change Day Ontario, I made a pledge to start a discussion on the topic at Nipissing.
I am proud to say that as I am writing this there is the beginnings of what will be an impactful conversation among our nursing students and faculty about what we can do to prepare our future care providers of tomorrow, today!
It is important as a student that you feel like you are able to influence change and be a leader within your school. As a student who in high school was very much involved in student government and different initiatives coming to university felt like that was all going to change. At Nipissing, this is not the case and there are always an incredible amount of clubs, councils and teams that are eager to have new members and faculty to are always open to listen. In the School of Nursing, there is always someones door open to help guide and support our healers of tomorrow!