Y’all. I thought grad school was hard at the time, but nursing school is no joke! I haven’t even started yet and just ran my ink cartridge in my printer dry and have four chapters to read before classes start!
My semester starts back up tomorrow with nursing school orientation since I’m a transfer into Trocaire’s nursing program. Queue the start of a 4 month head-spin. Luckily, I love nursing and that makes the school part 100% easier. I think a major reason I struggled so much with my marketing/communication degrees and. career was because it wasn’t my passion. So if this is any lesson for you, don’t rush on picking out a college major! Focus on finding your passion or you’ll end up on your third degree and a million student loans like me!
Now that I’m older, wiser, and appreciate time and education much more than I did right out of high school, I do all I can to enjoy school and ease the stress. So, without further hesitation, here is my list of nursing school necessities that I hope help make your semester a little easier!
While many people prefer a digital book, I’m still old-fashioned and like books. I remember more when I highlight, underline, emphasize, rewrite, and draw. I guess that’s all part of my creative personality. In my creative arsenal, I have:
If and when I have the time, I love creating colorful pieces to remember important things like dosage conversions, vitals, and anything I may have a hard time remembering if it doesn’t stand out.
Pocket and Badge Guides
It’s no secret that there is a lot to remember in nursing school. Vitals, labs, ABG’s, CBC, metabolic panels, meds, ECG’s, EEG’s, blah, blah, blah. Having a little help never hurts!
It’s so important to remember the fundamentals, so I love Wolters Kluwer “made incredible quick” guides. In first level, I purchased the nursing facts version and I still use it to this day, even at my job. They have a huge variety of options you can choose from and wipeable pages so you can take notes and erase them!
Wearing an ID badge is also a daily duty of being a nurse and nursing student. Scrubs & Stuff LLC make a comprehensive set of reference cards with important nursing items to remember. Isn’t it awesome to know that there is so many items out there to help you out?!
NCLEX Prep Materials
We all know our end goal in nursing school is to pass that NCLEX-RN and officially join the ranks of other great nurses! I have two resources I use prepare myself for the NCLEX.
First is my El Sevier NCLEX-RN Examination Q&A Review book. The book includes questions formatted as they would be on the NCLEX with rationales for the answer. Rationales are GREAT in the fact that they describe the critical thinking thought process it takes to answer the question.
My other AWESOME resource is Kaplan Test Prep. I am currently a test prep brand ambassador and love how much I have learned so far! Kaplan does an awesome job at explaining how to answer the questions because let’s be honest, nursing school exams and the NCLEX are not the same. Head over to Kaplan’s site to find the product right for you!
Every nursing program is different in their approach to uniforms. My first school was great. As long as we had purple scrubs, it didn’t matter which brand we wore. We also had the choice of whatever sneakers we wanted.
Trocaire is the opposite, unfortunately. I have to wear wine colored pants, white top, and white leather shoes. Quite honestly the part of school I’m looking least forward to.
Anyway, if you have a choice, the right pair of scrubs and sneakers can make such a huge difference. I love Jockey scrubs. Not only do they feel like pajamas, but there are so many choices you can choose from to meet your needs and personality. For work I wear their Performance RX Yoga scrub pants. Head over the Uniform Advantage today to receive up to 40% off select brands! For shoes, I love Crocs, but I typically wear my New Balance Fresh Foam Sport Lightweight. They are currently marked down to $59.99 on their website!
Thought you were past those days, huh? I definitely caved over Christmas and had my mom buy me one. If you don’t pack your lunch for work or school, you’ll definitely fall into the fast food or cafeteria trap. We are college students and living on a budget, so a pretty lunch pail to carry your food in makes it a little more appealing. On top of that, more storage to carry snacks in!
First, I need to address something that really irks me. You’re at a store and find a super cute planner. Then you realize it starts in July of the previous year and goes until the end of the current year. I don’t want to pay for a planner that has six months of unwanted time! UGH!
Anyway, my new favorite brand of planners are created by Emily Ley. Emily’s brand, Simplified, is all about you guessed it, simplifying life. Her website states:
Simplified’s mission is to inspire and empower women with the tools they need to simplify their lives. Life will always be busy, but with a little intention, joy and simplicity can be found in the mess, in the journey, and sometimes in between the third and fourth loads of laundry.https://www.emilyley.com/pages/our-story
Isn’t that mission perfect to apply to our lives during nursing school? It can be busy and messy, but if we take the time to live with intention, we can find joy! Love it. Head over to the Simplified site today for 20% off all 2019 Simplified Planners!
Last but not least…
A pretty stethoscope
That thing has to be on you at all times, so let it make a statement and reflect your personality! I have a MDF Instruments rose gold stethoscope. It was a birthday gift last year and I get so many compliments on how pretty and feminine it is. The quality is also great and it comes with a lifetime warranty!
There you have it! I hope all my fellow nursing students have a great semester! Remember that it goes by fast and that you have the power to control your thoughts and stress (in other words – watch who you surround yourself with because nursing school stress seems to be contagious. Keep a clear, focused, positive mind!).
Share your nursing school must-haves with me!
Brittany, Student nurse and future RN ♥️