Putting your needs first can lead to improved patient outcomes
When I went to nursing school, students were expected to be independent and self-motivated. We were left on our own to figure out how to survive. Mine was not a unique experience and it was certainly not unique to nursing. Many college freshmen are told during orientation, “Look to your left, look to your right. In a year, half of you will be gone.” The culture in higher education is often one of fear of failure. While this may work well for some students, many are lost and lonely or feel inadequate and anxious. I believe that students, like all human beings, succeed better when they are encouraged and supported rather than discouraged and threatened.
But the intention of caring is not enough. Jean Watson, PhD, RN, AHN-BC, FAAN, founder and director of the Watson Caring Science Institute, says it is through the demonstration of concrete acts that the experience of care is achieved.1 To that end, we established at Chamberlain College of Nursing an educational philosophy and a culture that we call Chamberlain Care™. We believe that if we take extraordinary care of students, they will in turn take extraordinary care of the patients and families they serve in the future. Chamberlain Care includes a caring climate, but goes beyond the intention of caring to the concrete acts of providing students the resources they need to succeed. We provide robust academic and personal support through initiatives such as our Chamberlain Care® Student Success Model. This includes a Center for Academic Success on every campus that provides complimentary tutoring and workshops to all students, Student Success Strategy resources for all online post-licensure students, complimentary access to the ASPIRE student assistance program and many other resources designed to help students succeed in reaching their dreams. It is a combination of a culture of care and a commitment to providing resources and student support that helps students succeed who might otherwise struggle or fail.
Our vision is to graduate extraordinary nursing professionals who transform healthcare worldwide and we do that through our culture of care. To build the culture of care, Chamberlain focused on three things: caring for ourselves, caring for colleagues and caring for students to help them achieve their goals. We believe that students who are exposed to the concepts of care and service on a daily basis will internalize them, just as they internalize the knowledge and skills they need to master. This philosophy is built into everything we do at Chamberlain and is a key to student success.