With a wide breadth of options available to them, local nursing students have much to consider when deciding which career path is best for them.
On Friday, the University of Saskatchewan hosted a speed-nursing event to aid students in their decision-making, with seven stations set up for their consideration.
“It connects our students with alumni who have gone ahead of them, and it gives them an opportunity to speak with leaders and professionals (about) particular areas of expertise,” development officer Anna Pacik explained.
“It gives them an opportunity to path their career, so when they leave university it helps them to explore areas they might not have considered in the past.”
With the ding of her bell, Pacik sent students to different stations, which included the fields of nurse practitioner, critical care, rural and home care, while other speakers spoke to and answered questions about graduate studies, the Saskatchewan Registered Nursing Association and career pathing.
For second-year student Shea Humphreys, Monday’s event provided plenty of fodder for future career path considerations.
“There are so many different things that you can do,” she said. “It’s not just working on a floor with a patient -- you can do other things with it. It’s not just what people think it is.
“It’s nice to be able to talk to people in that field instead of just reading about it online. It gives you an idea of what you’re getting into when you begin your practicums.”
Humphreys is currently looking into geriatrics, having spent her first practicum at the Lakeland Trail long-term care unit in the Herb Bassett Home.
It connects our students with alumni who have gone ahead of them, and it gives them an opportunity to speak with leaders and professionals (about) particular areas of expertise. - Anna Pacik
Always interested in the medical field, nursing was quick to attract Humphrey’s attention because she felt it would be the best means of balancing work and family life.
“It’s probably the most patient-orientated aspect of the medical field,” she noted.
Reporting excellent job prospects, the field of nursing remains a popular career choice, University of Saskatchewan College of Nursing associate director Lois Berry said.
Offering University of Saskatchewan’s second through fourth years of nursing school at Prince Albert’s First Nations University, Berry notes “lots of enthusiasm and very committed students” in the city.
“We’re always amazed by the quality of student we get and the level of enthusiasm for the field,” she said. “We’re well represented at this site when it comes to interest in the community and enthusiasm from the students.”
The nursing program currently has 40 students in second year, and between 33 and 36 students in both years three and four.
Students must take their first year elsewhere, though Berry notes that Prince Albert’s SIAST campus offers the necessary courses.
Monday’s speed-nursing event “reflects the pace of nursing and the options there are in nursing,” she said, adding that job prospects are excellent across the board.
Though it’s more of a challenge getting full-time positions in larger cities like Saskatoon, “there are lots of prospects,” she said. “They want our graduates, for sure.”