Nursing students say learning amid the COVID-19 pandemic will make them better nurses in the future

Published: Dec. 1, 2020 at 5:34 PM CST
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - Andrea Schmit, a junior nursing student at Bryan College of Health, has wanted to be a nurse ever since her brother was in an accident years ago.

“I saw the excellent care they gave to him and wanted to be a part of that,” Schmit said.

Now, that she’s in school during a pandemic, that calling is more clear than ever.

“It’s never ideal, but if this is the scenario we’re dealing with when I graduate then I’m going to take it on because that’s what I was trained for, to care for people who are sick.”

Schmit said in many ways this year of nursing school has provided the same opportunities as any other.

“We’ve still able to go into the hospital and get hands on experience and practice all the things needed to become a good nurse,” she said.

But there are also new challenges.

“Learning to maintain that self care,” Schmit said. “Knowing when you need to take a break and when you can help out.”

That’s been one of the biggest lessons students are being taught this year as the pandemic pushes healthcare workers harder than ever.

“We’re teaching them a lot about selfcare and resilience and preparing them for what they might be seeing,” Assistant Professor Angela Mccown said.

Amid the challenges, they’re also learning a lot.

“While they’re not working on COVID-19 units, they’re able to treat COVID-19 patients here and there so they’re able to see how they’re doing and the amount of care it takes to take care of these folks,” Mccown said.

Schmit telling 10/11 NOW she’s going to be a better nurse for these experiences.

“Seeing this gives me good insight,” Schmit said. “We’re here to help take care of these people that the unknown might happen to.”

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