There are ample amounts of literature that shows that mentor programs are exceptionally helpful to many different types of individuals.  Mentorships increase a person’s feeling of belonging and their self-efficiency.  These programs are useful in increasing long term retention rates and aspirations in their career (Dennehy & Dasgupta, 2017).  Support systems such as the one this class is focused on creating can generate a safe space for students to ask questions during their pursuit of their degree. This writer has a few questions that would be helpful to ask their support system.

How can I best prepare myself for my clinical rotation?

The clinical aspect of this program seems the most daunting to the writer.  The writer went through many hours of clinicals during their practical nurse program and the registered nurse program, however, a practitioner program seems much different than what this writer is used to.  Working alongside nurse practitioners only gives a small example of what the practitioners workday looks like.  It would be helpful to know how to best prepare for clinical practicum and what a normal day for the nurse practitioner is like.

Did you ever feel overwhelmed with school, work, and personal life?  How did you manage it all?

Most students have a difficult time managing all three aspects of their life especially in graduate and doctoral degree programs.  Studies show that with age, professionals engage in more self-care than those early in their careers (Dorociak et al., 2017).  It may be that with experience professionals understand the importance of work life balance and how to better manage their time.  When taking on new tasks or changing careers it can be difficult to manage time until one has experience.  Asking the student’s support system how those individuals were able to be successful during their time can help the student learn new ways to accomplish tasks.

Is there anything you would have done differently while pursuing your MSN degree?

Talking about mistakes and learning from them are an important part of being a professional.  When an individual makes a mistake, they most of remember what it is that went wrong and what could have been done differently afterwards (Pearn & Mulrooney, 2017).  The writer precepts students at their hospital and will often share with the student past mistakes the one has done.  These examples are given because the writer believes they are important lessons that can help other nurses with their future careers.