My resume includes my educational background, clinical experience, work experience, leadership roles and long-term volunteer experiences. Here is a link to my resume: AbbeyResume2018-2gvpp67
Applied Experiences and What I Have Gained From Them
As a nursing student, I have clinical experiences every semester. This semester (Spring 2019), I am on the Burn Unit at the Wexner Medical Center at The Ohio State University. So far, I have learned many skills that can be transferred into my career. Not only have I learned actual clinical skills (e.g., wound dressing changes, inserting catheters, etc.), I have gained so much communication experience when working with patients. Every time I step into a patient’s room, I am gaining some new experience or learning how to answer a question I have never heard before. The connections and the quick trust that nurses need to make with their patients is something I am still trying to learn, but I get closer each week. This clinical is also teaching me how to create and foster interprofessional relationships. When you are working in the hospital, it is not only nurses; there are surgeons, doctors, PT/OT, PCAs/techs, etc. Learning how to collaborate with these other professions as a member of a cohesive care team is a skill I am finally getting the chance to practice.
I have also worked as an STNA (nurse’s aide) in a long term care facility. Though my training and work, I have learned a variety of basic care skills that are needed in the day to day practice of a nurse. Having been able to work in this position before I started nursing school, I came into my clinicals and courses with some patient care experiences under my belt. I am able to work with a variety of patients: mobile and non-mobile; those with Alzheimer’s and/or dementia; patients of all ages; and patients with a wide span of medical diagnoses. The biggest skills I took away from this job are critical thinking and adaptability: no patient is ever “textbook” and you need to be prepared to adapt to whatever is thrown at you. Knowing what patients to see first, which situation seems most critical, as well as simpler tasks (like knowing how long it will take to give a bed bath or to toilet a patient) is so important in the time management of a nurse. These skills have helped me immensely in my courses and clinical experiences so far in nursing school.
The picture above is of my first clinical group in the College of Nursing here at OSU. We took this picture on our first day, all very excited to be wearing our red scrubs and jumping head first into nursing classes. This picture is very symbolic of a large leap for us as students. My entire first year was mainly working so hard to just get a chance to wear these scrubs, studying day in and day out to get into one of the best nursing schools in the nation. And here I am, at the end of my first semester of nursing school. But, it has not been so easy. Exam after exam, clinical skill evaluations and vital signs checkoffs, when we forget why we are putting ourselves through all of this work, we have to look back at the smiling faces in this picture. We have to look at those students who are so eager to learn and who genuinely want to help others. Sometimes the pile of homework and all of the lab skills can obscure the real reasons we applied to nursing school.
I have grown so much this semester. My time management and prioritization skills have improved immensely, and I can’t remember the last time I retained as much information from one semester. We have to work hard because, someday, somebody’s life will be in our hands and we must be prepared to take care of them. While the classes and clinicals can be stressful, I have never been so proud of my grades and how hard I have worked. Having just finished my last clinical session for this semester, I am looking forward to spring, putting back on my red scrubs and going out into the hospital to learn.
At a school like Ohio State, there are so many opportunities for enrichment both in and out of the classroom. These have given me many options for what to do in the future to enhance my undergraduate career.
For global awareness, I would love to study abroad. I do not have a specific program or place in which I would like to study, but I know I want to travel the world. The College of Nursing has many opportunities to study in Europe and Africa, learning about healthcare in places other than the USA. I also believe working in the hospitals, nursing homes and psychiatric hospitals, I will learn more about diverse cultures and people. I would even consider doing study abroad that is not connected to the CON just to be able to travel and learn about something I enjoy (such as the program based in Liverpool that studies the impact of British popular music in the 1960s).
Participating in research based around the clinical setting is an opportunity that I want to get involved with during my junior or senior year. So many of the professors for the College of Nursing are either working toward their Doctorate degree or are just consistently doing research in the clinical setting. Not only would this allow to me to gain clinical experience and add to my resume, but it would be a great opportunity to get more connected to the faculty in the CON and the hospital staff. One of my professors this semester is doing research at a psychiatric hospital in the Columbus area, and I am very interested in getting involved with something in that area of study.
I am currently one of the co-chairs for the Recruitment, Outreach and Welcome committee for the Mount Leadership Society Scholars. This has really helped me cultivate my leadership skills by teaching me how to delegate, create and execute lesson plans, as well as communicating with OSU faculty. I am also a “Phys Phab,” or a student tutor for one of the Human Physiology classes offered at OSU. This position has put me in a position where I am able to teach future healthcare professionals, and I am comfortable taking that lead role of explaining information to others.
As for service engagement, I am currently volunteering at the Clintonville Community Resource Center in their food pantry. I have so far worked for 13 hours, but will work for my total of 75 hours by March 2019. I am also planning on volunteering at a cancer patient resource center near my hometown over winter break. I want to continue volunteering throughout my life, helping with American Red Cross blood drives and at the cancer patient resource centers in the Columbus area.
Pictured above is a group of mainly first year Mounties (and some second years) at Smith’s Famous Farms after volunteering at the Fall Harvest Jamboree. This was one of my favorite service events of the autumn semester.
This past semester has been such a growing experience for me. Through the ups and the downs, I feel like I have learned a lot about myself and my aspirations.
As a pre-nursing major, my entire freshman year has been spent heavily focused on school and grades. While I have given up some opportunities to hang out with friends or get more involved in the campus, I think it will be all worth it when I (hopefully!) get my acceptance letter to the College of Nursing in June.
Throughout high school, I rarely studied and was able to do very well in my classes. The lack of study skills I had really came back to bite me when starting at Ohio State, so I quickly had to learn what worked and didn’t work for me. Luckily, my first semester classes were not too overbearing or stressful, so I was able to experiment with my studying style.
I am extremely happy to say I ended my first semester with a 3.94 GPA, but college is not only about grades. Between study sessions, I was able to make some amazing friends through my scholars program. Two of these friends are also in the pre-nursing program with me and have been a huge support whenever I am freaking out about a class or the nursing program (especially for this second semester!). It’s insane to think you can get so close to people in such a short amount of time, but I don’t think I would have gotten through this first semester without the “family” of people I was introduced to in the Mount scholars program. I did not really realize how close I was to some of the people in the program until the fall retreat, which was probably my favorite memory from the fall semester.
Not only is Mount like a family, but I have been able to get involved in some awesome service projects. The Fall Harvest Jamboree in October was one of my favorite service projects this past semester. It was so much fun to hang out with the families who came through. While we were working the whole day, I loved being able to do what I could to put smiles on the kids’ faces when they were playing a game or buying a bag of popcorn with money they saved up. I also loved working at the Wheelchair Rugby service event. I had never seen anything like it, and it was really cool to hear about the sport.
I am really excited about the semester and years ahead. While, so far, I have been pretty stressed out with 8am and 6:50am classes packed with content (and having 5 exams in the first 3 weeks) I really feel like I am learning for a career, which is an interesting experience I haven’t had before. I am excited to live with 5 close friends next year and (hopefully) getting into the nursing program. I am very happy I chose OSU and can’t wait to make more memories here.
From left to right, my mother, my grandmother, myself and my father pose in front a banner at a Parent’s Weekend reception.
While I have absolutely loved my time here at OSU, it is always nice to see family members. Luckily, I am only from two hours away and all of my grandparents live within 15 minutes of my house back in my hometown. One of my parents is usually in the area every week or so, allowing us to go to lunch with my brother, who also attends Ohio State. Parent’s Weekend (mainly Nov. 4) was great because I was able to see both of my parents and my grandma and show them around campus.
After a great lunch and then a reception with the Mount Leadership Society, I was able to come back home for two days to see my sister, my dog and some of my friends who were also back home. During these two days, I was able to rejuvenate (and I even chopped off 6 inches of hair!). Ohio State is an amazing school, but it is also great to get away from the chaos of such a big school for even just a couple of days. Seeing family, friends, getting away from homework and stopping all the worrying about school for a bit has allowed for me to focus more when I came back.
From left, Kaitlynn, myself and Isabel took this photo while waiting in line for College Gameday.
So far at Ohio State, I have made many amazing friends and have had some great experiences. On the night of Friday, Sept. 8, some of my friends from Mount and I went down to the Short North to get Jeni’s Ice Cream before going to Gateway Movie Theatre to see the movie, “IT.” We saw the midnight showing (Sept. 9) and got out around 3 in the morning.
My friend, Isabel, and I immediately went to The Oval to wait in line for College Gameday for the Oklahoma game later on Sept. 9. We met up with around 30 or so other Mounties and all stood in line for 6 hours to get a spot to see College Gameday up close. After the 6 hours, we watched College Gameday live for 3 hours. This was a really fun experience and allowed me to get closer with Mounties I hadn’t hung out with much. Then, after a well-needed nap, I went to my first home football game as a Buckeye and loved sharing this experience with my fellow Buckeyes.
This is just one of my favorite memories from my OSU experience so far and I’m so glad I got to share it with my fellow Mounties. Through many of our experiences together in the past month and a half, they have made me a better person and have given me great stories that show how OSU is the best school out there.
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Abbey Saxer is a first year undergraduate student currently studying pre-nursing. She is planning on studying through the college of nursing at OSU for the remainder of her undergraduate years, beginning her sophomore year. In the future, Abbey hopes to become a Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (NNP) and would love to continue her studies at OSU through graduate school. She is a part of the Mount Leadership Society Scholars. Abbey plans on volunteering at the Wexner Medical Center on campus and being a part of BuckeyeThon, as well as many other amazing service opportunities at OSU. When not in class, Abbey loves to read, listen to music, play volleyball and hang out with her friends.