In the sophomore year of the Nursing program at Purdue, we start our first rounds of clinicals. For our first year of clinicals, we stay in the Lafayette area. There is a possibility of working at a long-term nursing care facility or a rehab unit at a hospital. For my first round of clinicals, I was placed at Signature Healthcare, a long-term care facility in Lafayette. There are 8 students per clinical group, so you really get the opportunity to get to know these other nursing students while working with them. For the first month of school, we went over some basic nursing skills in the Johnson Hall of Nursing instead of going to our clinical site, and at the end of September we went for a tour of the facility. We officially began helping the CNAs with patients in October. We were responsible for getting patients up and dressed in the morning, helping pass out breakfast, and bathing patients. We also had plenty of opportunities every week to do vital signs and physical assessments on patients. The nurses and CNAs at the facility were always more than willing to explain some of their procedures and show how things are done with long-term patients. I was also able to work with an occupational therapist on a patient, and I was able to observe rounds of physical therapy at the facility. After only a few clinical experiences, I feel like I have learned so much more about nursing and interacting with patients. Purdue offers the unique opportunity of starting clinicals in the sophomore year, while most other nursing programs do not begin them until the junior year. I have thoroughly enjoyed all of my clinical experiences and they have allowed me to become more confident in my decision to pursue a career in nursing. Here is picture of my clinical group from our first day of clinicals.
— Elissa Borgia, Sophomore, Nursing