Sandburg offers a variety of programs in health professions such as medical assisting, practical nursing and our RN program. Students in our College of Nursing get hands-on experience in the classroom through our state-of-the-art SimMan, and they learn skills first hand during their on-site clinical practice, all done locally.
I'm in the PN nursing program at Carl Sandburg. And you might hear it as licensed practical nurse as well. You get a little experience before you go back to RN, so it's kind of a good tradeoff.
The hands-on learning experience the students get are in the lab. They have lab once a week where they learn the skills, practice the skills, test out on the skills, and then they also get to perform the skills in the hands-on learning and clinical. We have a sim lab here. We call him "Sim Man," where we can do simulations. The instructor is on the outside of the room with a computer. We have a microphone, so we can speak to the mannequin, to the students when they're in there doing assessments or whatever simulation they're doing. Sim Man or Sim Lab benefits the students to be in a safe environment to practice and not have the nerves of practicing on a real, live human being.
I chose to go to nursing in Carl Sandburg because it has a very good reputation of producing highly-qualified nurses; and they also do something called an ESA, which is Employable Skills Academy, which helps you write résumés. It helps you plan for interviews. It helps you with questions they usually ask. Going through clinicals, it kind of geared me toward being in pediatrics even more, because I had one offsite with children, and it went very well. And it reinforced the idea of working with pediatrics.
I'd say the thing I've learned most in the clinical setting is to be prepared, have everything ready. There's a lot of patients to take care of. You have to move quickly but also safely.