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Meet NP Student JoAnn Elizabeth Leavey (November 14, 2015)

November 14th, 2015




A day in the life: An NP student’s perspective on the daily journey of becoming an NP



Six-thirty a.m. and the alarm goes off. Disorientation…what are the causative agents of pneumonia? Cephalosporins, first generation and penicillin allergy…remember…there can be a cross reactivity. Wait, need to get out of bed to get to clinical on time!


The NP student jumps up, dashes to the shower thinking, if only the Uphold and Graham Family Practice Guidelines text was waterproof – s/he could use that time in the shower to study (there is so much to know and so precious little time!). Each minute of the NP student’s life is carefully thought through in terms of when and how s/he can cram more information into her/his ever expanding list of “need to knows”. Then there is the constant talking out loud on the drives to clinical, university, or on the daily walks to destress….let me recite the sore throat scales, hypertensive guidelines, headache and concussion assessment guidelines and so on…and wait…it is still only 7:30 a.m. and the NP student is just entering the Tim Horton’s drive thru…s/he panics. The NP student forgot to say good-bye to her/his family and wonders if they will walk the dog! Oh well, they will have to cope, as the NP student has a big day ahead with patients, her/his preceptor, ensuring understanding of her/his role and responsibilities, and of course the always present, studying.


The student pace and learning is relentless BUT awesomely rewarding. The NP COUPN consortium is an amazing group that support, teach and guide each of Ontario’s NP students. They take us from being students to working as novice NPs and beyond.


I wanted to write this piece to thank our teachers, preceptors and NPAO advocates, as the privilege to serve as an NP is unparalleled. The holistic NP primary care model for patients enables access to comprehensive care and health teaching, which aims to create community “wellness living”. NPs help create healthy communities by promoting health versus responding to disease processes only. I am very excited to be a part of primary health care as an NP student and have the opportunity to help people work toward “growing their health”!


Meantime….got to get back to my clinical practice guidelines review 🙂 Wish me/all of us luck!

JoAnn Elizabeth Leavey, RN, BScN, MEd, EdD, C. Psych.
NP-PHC Student – University of Western Ontario

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