How Mississippi University for Women is preparing nurses for the field

COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI ) – They are there to take care of you when you need it the most. Recent reporting from Reuters says around the nation, almost a third of nurses are considering leaving the profession.

WCBI talked with faculty and students in health sciences to learn how they are preparing their nurses to stay in the field.

Morgan Hodum is a senior in the BSN program at The W.

She is looking forward to crossing the stage Friday and becoming a registered nurse.

“I’m super excited. Two years actually went by a lot faster than I thought they would,” said Hodum.

Hodum knows the first time she steps on the floor as an RN all duties will be on her.

She said during her time in the nursing program she has been able to get over a hundred hours of field experience to prepare her for the real world.

“We have a preceptorship that lasts a month and it’s about 157 hours and during that preceptorship, we work whenever they work. So if they work 12-hour shifts just on the weekends then that’s when we go in. It really helps us navigate what nurses do,” said Hodum.

Dean of Nursing and health sciences, Dr. Brandy Larmon has been in the field for 18 years.

Being a graduate and teacher at The W she knows firsthand how they prepare nursing students to stay in the field.

She said the best procedure is early exposure.

“I think one of the things our programs do for undergraduate nursing is we really put them into clinical and into those clinical areas very quickly. So from their very first clinical course and all the way through they get clinical time in the hospital,” said Larmon.

While faculty and staff are looking to start an official program that offers support to their graduates, Larmon said they continue to mentor many of their students after graduation.

“We have a very high percentage of our students that stay local or in the state so if they are not coming back to continue their education with us they are at least staying in contact so we still mentor many of our graduates,” said Larmon.

While experience may be the best medicine for keeping students in the field, Hodum said having a community helps her to keep pushing.

“Everybody has the right motive while we are in the nursing program I think that’s really huge for a group of kids that are 20-26 years old. We care for our patients and each other but I think that also has a lot to do with our teachers because we see how much they care for us,” said Hodum.

The W is historically known for its nursing program and Larmon says that is thanks to the hard work of faculty and a supportive campus environment.

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