By ThriveAP Contributor and New Nursing Student Ashley Prince
It’s great to be back, ThriveAP! It’s been quite the summer. In these past few months, I got braces (again!) and was mistaken for a high schooler no less than ten times. I graduated from Ohio State with an honors Neuroscience B.S. and moved back home to Cleveland. We threw my younger sister her high school graduation party, where I decided that if planning a wedding is anything as involved as that affair I’m eloping. I backed my poor car into a pole, and a long standing foot injury finally got fixed. And through it all, I’ve been steadily preparing to begin Baldwin Wallace’s Accelerated BSN program, starting August 24th.
Transitioning into this program wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. I felt like I took three steps backward when I graduated, and was initially surprisingly sad. I was the only one out of my friends who moved back home, and while my parents are great, it’s very weird living under someone else’s roof with their rules again. I’m also going into a second Bachelor’s program, not a Master’s or Ph.D. Even though it’s the program I really want, it still made me feel inferior to my friends’ upcoming graduate degrees. People began asking me why I was going through all this trouble to “just end up a nurse” since I was smart enough to be a doctor. Ouch. I ended up throwing myself a little pity party after graduation. But soon the emails with onboarding requirements for the program started flooding in, and I knew I couldn’t wallow anymore. I picked myself up, brushed the dust off, and moved on. This was the program I wanted, I decided that anyone who made me feel inferior to it had better get out of my way.
There was a lot to do to prep for the program. Physicals, TB tests, uniform orders, drug screenings, CPR classes, calendars, geez. The director of the program is former Navy, and runs the program in a very military-style way. I got a taste of this military logic when I decided to purchase my own white (who picks white?!) scrubs instead of the school-issued ones, because the school ones are ill-fitting and made of itchy fabric. I had to return them because my purchased scrubs might have different pocket sizes than the official ones, making me unrecognizable in the hospital as a student. It was then that I learned it might be better to beg for forgiveness than ask for permission. I went out on a limb and started a Facebook group for the class, hopefully creating a place where we can get to know each other and make study groups. Or at least learn the best way to get stains out of those awful uniforms. Turned out everyone loved the idea and we’re already making friends before Orientation has even started! At least that’s one thing to cross off the list.
There’s still a lot to do. I don’t have my class schedule or a parking pass. I still need to visit the campus a few more times to learn where I’m going. I may have had a few setbacks, but I learned it’s OK to feel a little down as long as you can pick yourself back up. I’m so excited (and a little nervous) to start this intense program, and get on track to starting my career as a Nurse Practitioner!
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