An exploration into the nursing field


File Photo/The Lion’s Roar

Connor Haag, a nursing major, practices a skill he and his classmates learned for a class led by Michelle Reed, an instructor of nursing. Two of university’s online nursing programs,MS in Nursing – Family Nurse Practitioner and online Post Master’s Certificate – Family Nurse Practitioner, were recently ranked best in the nation by

Nursing students prepare to become caregivers for the community through research, clinical practice and service.

Dr. Kenneth Tillman, department head of the School of Nursing, explained that even though a career as a nurse is rewarding, the life of a nursing major requires extensive hard work.

“It can be stressful and demanding,” shared Tillman. “Not everyone is cut out for it.”

According to Tillman, nursing majors are required to complete three semesters of prerequisite classes before applying online for clinical nursing classes. Acceptance into the clinical nursing program is based solely upon the GPA of the prerequisite classes and approval of the Louisiana State Board of Nursing.

Tillman feels that the department is different from others on campus.

“No one can relate to it unless you experienced it,” explained Tillman. “That kind of creates a unique bond among nursing students and a camaraderie that I don’t know if I see that in other departments. I see it in our students.”

Michelle Reed, an instructor of nursing, believes time management is the biggest struggle her nursing students face.

“There is a lot of classes and a lot to juggle, and all the information they learn in those classes, they have to know it to care for people,” said Reed.

Despite the challenges students encounter in completing their degree, Reed feels nursing is a satisfying career.

“It is such a rewarding profession,” shared Reed. “When you are taking care of someone who is sick and make a change in their life to actually make it better, it’s just so rewarding.”

Macie Howell, a junior nursing major, explained that her interest in nursing began at a young age. She looks forward to the growth and challenges of a nursing career.

“I had the opportunity of being in the delivery room, when I was younger, with my cousin,” commented Howell. “I fell in love with nursing when I saw the transition nurse. It is a needed job with many opportunities and includes the aspect of caring for others.”

From working with newborns to the elderly, variability exists within the nursing profession, and registered nurses are in demand. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of registered nurses is expected to grow 15 percent from 2016 to 2026.

For Katelyn Chandler, a sophomore nursing major, the biggest struggle after getting into nursing school was adjusting to a different style of studying to accommodate the testing style.

“My advice to freshmen is to keep yourself self-disciplined in your studies to maintain a good GPA,” said Chandler. “It’s great to take a break and have fun, but there is a balance that has to be maintained because nursing school is very competitive.”

Chandler encouraged students who are interested to apply to the nursing program.

“I would definitely recommend this program to anyone wanting to go into the nursing field,” expressed Chandler. “The professors are very willing to help you succeed in the classrooms as long as you put in the work.”