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Which specialty of nursing did you choose, how did you prepare for it and why did you choose it?

Hello everyone! I'm a first-generation college student and CNA here in San Diego. I'm pursuing a nursing career and am convinced that I will be specializing in a branch of nursing (masters) in the future. Currently, I'm in the process of receiving a general degree in math and science this fall! I will be preparing for the TEAS (AKA HESI) after the fall semester to apply for nursing school in Spring 2021, at two of my local community colleges! I have already planned on doing a bridge program at PLNU to get my bachelor's degree.

I hope that you can all tell me about your experience the ways you prepared to pursue a specialty once you became an RN. Tips and advice are helpful!

(Also, any tips on how to prepare for the TEAS and get a high score LOL). Thank you all in advance!!
#nursing #college #healthcare #medicine #nurses #nurse

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Suzanne’s Answer

Hi Jennifer,

I chose my nursing specialty while in nursing school. My name is Sue and I am a retired oncology nurse with over 30 years of service. I was assigned to assess and create a care plan for a terminal cancer patient during my last year of nursing school. I studied, reviewed the patient's case, wrote the care plan, and prepared myself emotionally to enter the patient's room. What I saw floored me. The patient was in a very sunny room with beams of light shining on him. He was surrounded by family. He was sitting up (high fowler's) and had his head thrown back, laughing. The entire family was laughing at something. I was stunned. I learned, in that moment, that end of life doesn't mean end of happiness. That cancer doesn't have to be depressing. And that nurses provide the care required to allow families these precious moments. I went on to become oncology specialized and further specialized in oncology clinical trials. Was this easy? No. Was this fulfilling? Absolutely.

Once I had practiced Oncology Nursing for about 3 years, I studied for and obtained my Oncology Nursing Certification. I then earned my Breast Cancer Nursing Certification and Clinical Research Certification when I was running a large clinical trials program. These certifications added to my professional profile and knowledge base.

There are many organizations that will help you once you have determined a specialty. Here is a nice reference: https://nurse.org/articles/nursing-certifications-credentials-list/


Regarding the TEAS preparation, here is another reference: https://www.test-guide.com/teas-test-overview.html

I can say all of the usual such as stay positive, study hard etc. But that is trite. I didn't think I was smart enough to become a nurse, but with perseverance and hard work, here we are today. I concluded my career earning 6 figures! I was able further scientific understanding of cancer and help thousands of people. Rewarding beyond words.

Don't doubt yourself. Take the work in bite-sized pieces and move forward. Take prep courses for big exams and certifications. On the night before an exam, don't study. Visualize your passing grade instead and get a good night's sleep.

Nursing is an amazing career. It appears you have a solid plan forward. I wish you all the best!

Sue



Thank you comment icon Thank you, this is amazing! I really needed it. Jennifer
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much!! Jennifer
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Bettye’s Answer

Before selecting a nursing specialty you must as yourself several questions.

What is your personality like? Are you introverted or extroverted? Detail oriented or not? Do you appreciate exciting challenges and the adrenaline rush?

Honest answers to these questions can take you one step closer to determining which specialty works best for you.

For example, if you thrive on adrenaline rushes to perform optimally, you might consider Trauma Nursing or Emergency Room Nursing.

Introverts might fare best in nursing research, legal nurse consulting or forensic nursing.

A person who is extroverted could possibly thrive in pediatrics, critical care or intensive unit care nursing.

Located in your college counseling, career center or library are numerous personality and occupational interest inventories that can pinpoint exactly what personality traits you have. The results can provide greater insights into your personal and career style.
Thank you comment icon I will use this advice as I prepare for my career. Jennifer
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Tequila’s Answer

Hello Jennifer. I chose oncology. When I started out, I was a telemetry, medical surgical nurse. I became impressed by the resiliency of oncology patients. I found and find them to be fighters. I truly like their spirit and courage. They make me feel hopeful. I felt them giving me strength and sometimes just wanted to spend time just taking. Their spirit were positive in the face of heavy challenges.
I prepared by studying and passing the Oncology certification examination. I learned how to administer chemotherapy, then I learned how to teach other nurses how to administer it. I continue to read the numerous breakthroughs in treatment. To the point of having cures for some cancers. I never seemed to be negative when I've worked on an oncology unit. If these folks can be positive, I needed to seek a positive spin on any challenge I had. I think just by working on oncology units over the years has contributed to my positive outlook on life in general.
Thank you comment icon This was super helpful, thank you! Jennifer
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