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Running head: FINAL ANALYSIS 1

Final Analysis
Melissa Alfaro
Bon Secours Memorial College of Nursing
NUR 4142 Synthesis for Nursing Practice
April 11, 2017
I pledge
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Final Analysis

On May 18, 2017, I will cross a stage to receive my diploma and, subsequently, cross a

chasm that separates a nursing student from a nursing graduate. I am proud to say that Bon

Secours Memorial College of Nursing (BSMCON) has provided me with a Bachelor of Science

in Nursing. Personally, the academic journey I have taken has been a tome-worthy epic and the

time I took to get a degree has made it feel rightly so, but the fruit of my labor is ever so sweet.

BSMCON has equipped me with the knowledge to traverse, in 3 years, from a girl with a dream,

to an advanced beginner with generalized nursing knowledge (Benner, 2001, p. 22). There

have been plenty of experiences in the classroom and in the clinical setting that I can extrapolate

from to illustrate the growth had here at BSMCON.

The Spring of 2014 is when I started my journey at BSMCON, and I officially started my

nursing school career. I had previously taken all my pre-requisites at other universities, so my

workload was limited to Foundations of Nursing Scholarship (NUR 1100) and Professional

Nursing Concepts (NUR 2101). It was here where I began a foundation of compassionate care

and abstract theories that guide a nurse. What made this semester challenging was the lack of

patient care to relate what I had learned to the real world. This made me rely on my peers as a

support system, and it was here I made lifelong friends throughout my nursing career.

The Fall of 2014 was a transition from the classroom to hands-on learning. I was enrolled

in Competencies for Nursing Practice I (NUR 2103) and Lifespan Health Assessment and

Clinical Prevention (NUR 2102). It was this semester where I began to think like a nurse. I

remember I would be spending the day around town with my mother, who is a cardiac critical

care nurse, and I would be assessing the gait of a passerby, the skin and facial symmetry of
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another. It was exciting to synthesize the basic critical thinking I was learning in the classroom

and it had practical application to what I saw in the world.

The Spring of 2015 proved to be a challenging one. Adult Nursing Science I (NUR 3111)

vastly expanded my knowledge, yet it was a challenge I was not ready to defeat. The lecture and

the practicum portion (NUR 3111P) provided me with the science that a nurse uses every day,

giving me knowledge of etiologies and pathologies of each body system, and how it manifests in

the body. It was a work load I did not accommodate my life for, and I ended up failing by tenths

of points. It was devastating for me. I knew myself to be an overachiever, but I had spread

myself too thin. I was running on fumes most weeks, between two jobs and a dance career I

hadnt yet put to rest. It was this semester that I learned to slow down. Self-care was the biggest

lesson to be learned here. Nursing school is not like any other academic endeavor. You must be

mentally prepared. It takes all your faculties to get through nursing school, and if you are not

fully present in the classroom, it can catch up to you. Fall of 2015 I spent repeating NUR 3111. It

only strengthened my knowledge about assessments and disease processes.

Spring of 2016 I hit the ground running. Spring and Fall of 2016 I put school first and I

learned so much. One of my most challenging classes was Nursing Research (NUR 4122). It

proved to be one of my most difficult classes and the most time intensive yet the most rewarding.

Having the knowledge of appraising journals, critiquing literature, scanning the databases and

creating an integrative review stimulated the humanities side of me. I was able to apply the

knowledge learned in this class to the clinical setting, where evidence-based practice is supreme

to safe, effective practice.

It now brings me to the current moment of Spring 2017. With weeks away from

graduation, this semester has proved to be a welcome challenge. Clinical Immersion (NUR 4143)
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provided me with a 202-hour long opportunity to synthesize my nursing school knowledge into

practice. It was on the Progressive Care Center at St. Francis Medical Center that I had the

chance to shadow a nurse. Working 12-hour shifts alongside my preceptor, I utilized my

medication knowledge, nursing skills, critical thinking, safe patient care and ability to build great

rapport. Sometimes we had a step-down population with a ratio of 3 to 1, other days we had a

ratio of 5 patients to 1. It was unpracticable, and challenging. It forced me to pay attention to the

little details. Going through the immersion experience, I gained confidence in my techniques,

prioritization and interprofessional collaboration. I was provided with the opportunities to initiate

intravenous catheters, draw labs, administer medications quickly and safely, provide discharge

education as well as ongoing education, and give and take report. All the while, I maintained

charting, keeping track of input and output, and the paperwork associated with the class. This

semester-long immersion brought me to the level of novice to the newfound status of advanced

beginner with general nursing knowledge (Benner, 2001).

I am now about to embark in this new exciting career as a nurse. I am currently seeking

the job market, due to start after my return from a 3-month long trip in Southeast Asia. I am

looking forward to use what I have learned at BSMCON to use. As I am naturally a people

person, I am looking forward to the patients I take care of. I am hoping to start my career in a

medical-surgical floor for a good foundation before I pursue my dreams of being in the

Operating Room. Also, I hope to use my skill set in a mission trip setting someday, where I can

provide education and competent care to those in developing countries. With the education that

BSMCON provided me with, I will be able to provide safe, quality care that is not short of

compassion and healing.


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References

Benner, P. (2001). From novice to expert: Excellence and power in clinical nursing practice

(Commemorative ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall Health.