Nurses Week: Becoming a nurse, a first hand experience

Nurses Week: Becoming a nurse, a first hand experience

The term “milestone” can have several different meanings. For anyone who has ever graduated from a school of nursing, this term signifies a huge accomplishment in our lives and in our overall mindset. Our whole existence has just changed as we head out into the world to provide care and compassion to our communities. Our days and nights are filled with excitement and learning opportunities. Those very opportunities are the ones that can mold the future of a new nurse.

The new world of long shifts, stressful situations and extreme time management, creates the perfect scenario for a nurse to get overwhelmed and ultimately lost from the profession. It is easy for an experienced nurse to not want to take on the added responsibility or time constraint of training a new nurse. Furthermore, it would definitely be easier, if given the assignment, to provide a basic overview of the duties and general answers to questions only when asked. However, we must remember that we are training the very nurses that may provide our own health care in the years to come.

We, as nurses, want to make a difference in the lives of others, therefore, we must consider that taking the time to make a difference in the life of a new nurse is just another opportunity for us to show our natural care and compassion.  I will not go into detail about my own new graduate experience; however, I will say that it made me the leader that I am today.

I take pride in being a nurse, and I embrace the opportunity to pass along the spirit of nursing. During National Nurses Week this year, I hope that all nurses will remember to support one another, encourage one another and always provide a helping hand to their fellow nurses when needed.

I also want to say “thank you” to all of the wonderful nurses in our organizations and our community for the sacrifices that you make each and every day.

This article originally appeared in the May 5, 2019, edition of The Herald-Dispatch.


Melissa Jeffrey, RN, BSN

Melissa Jeffrey is Marshall Health’s director of nursing. She ensures that nursing standards of practice are consistent across the organization and works to maintain a high quality of patient care by the nursing staff. Previously, she as the clinic manager in the departments of neurosurgery and neurology. Prior to joining Marshall Health, she worked as nursing director for Wyngate Assisted Living and director of nursing for NECCO Center. Jeffrey earned her associate degree in nursing and bachelor’s degree, both from Ohio University.