|Nursing student Maggie Carmack's family taking Instructor Brenda Lazarus's math quiz.|
Thursday, November 14, 2013
There is no doubt that doing well in school takes both time and energy. On average, students in CPTC’s Nursing program are expected to spend two hours studying for every credit they take. For LPN students, that can mean hitting the books for up to 42 hours every week. With the added pressures and stress of a busy home life, it’s no wonder that programs around the country are struggling with student retention rates.
Here at CPTC, we are looking to change that. At the Washington Center for Nursing’s Educational Progression in Nursing Conference held at CPTC in October, it became clear that the stronger a student’s support system at home, the more likely they were to complete the program. Hence the idea of hosting a Back to School Night was born. The goal was to hold an event that showed families what daily life is like for their students and to highlight why they need support.
“We are using the Back to School Night as a way to introduce families to what their student has to go through next year,” said Myra Griffin, Director of Nursing Programs at CPTC. “This allows them to see where the students are spending their time, and hopefully it will help build a stronger support system.”
During the event families were able to meet instructors and ask questions about what the program was like and what type of future their students faced. As a way to showcase how challenging the program can be, families even sat through a short lecture on fractions given by instructor Brenda Lazarus and were asked to take a quiz.
Families were also given a tour of the Nursing program’s fully functional lab and were introduced to the main attractions: lifelike dummies with the ability to present a full range of symptoms to help students hone their clinical skills.
At the end of the night families left with a greater appreciation for the challenges their loved ones face, and students left feeling reassured that they would receive the support they need.
“I really liked seeing my parents’ and fiance’s reaction to what I do,” said Maggie Carmack, a nursing student at CPTC. “It reaffirmed the idea that this isn’t just a walk in the park and that I do need their support. It’s only going to get harder from here.”