10 clinical rotations and 1,000 hours of hands-on experience in the field later, Pace nursing student Maria Lemmey ’14 is ready for the real world.
For Maria Lemmey ’14, preparing for a career in nursing has never been easier—or harder for that matter—through Pace’s Nursing Program. This spring, Lemmey will have completed 10 clinical rotations by the time she graduates, totaling about 1,000 hours of hands-on experience in the field.
“It has definitely been difficult, and it requires a lot of dedication, but I have loved every minute of it. I’ve gotten such great clinical experience from all of the hospitals that I’ve been at,” says Lemmey.
But Lemmey hadn’t always planned to become a nurse. Like many high school seniors, she was unsure of her career path. However, after volunteering at a nursing home as part of her honors society requirements, she became inspired by working with patients in the activities department. That’s when she found Pace.
Various research and sources had recommended Pace to Lemmey for its Nursing Program. As part of the curriculum, students like Lemmey are required to complete 10 clinical rotations in areas such as geriatric, psychiatric, medical-surgical, and pediatric nursing, as well as many others.
So far, she’s completed eight rotations in seven different medical centers and hospitals including Lawrence Hospital Center, New York Presbyterian, Phelps Memorial Hospital, Westchester Medical Center, White Plains Hospital, Blythedale Children’s Hospital, and Montefiore Medical Center. This semester, Lemmey will complete her curriculum with a community rotation at the Visiting Nurses Association in Tarrytown and at Ben Franklin Elementary School, and a preceptorship at the Veteran Affairs Medical Center in New York City.
She says that switching locations for her clinical rotations has been beneficial in exposing her to the various nursing settings and getting a feel for what kind of environment she’d like to work in upon graduation. “There are so many options in terms of where you can go for clinical and that opens up your eyes to the many and different opportunities,” she says. "Don’t limit yourself to just one or two of the same hospitals. You want to get that exposure at different sites,” she advises.
Similarly, Lemmey says that keeping an open mind to various nursing areas through each rotation has been beneficial as well. Originally interested in pediatrics, the rotations have introduced her to and piqued her interest in emergency nursing, NICU, and other specialties. Lemmey now plans to begin her career in a medical-surgical setting.
But no matter what specialty she ultimately chooses after graduation, she says that Pace has given her the tools to get there. “I’ve spoken to other people that are in different nursing programs, and Pace has a very rigorous program, which makes it stand out from the rest. I feel extremely confident that my education at Pace has prepared me for the [National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX)] and beginning my career,” she says.
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"Take these next four years to change your mind over and over again, learn about yourself, figure out your priorities, and absorb as much knowledge as you can," says graduating senior Jaclyn Griffith. "And please eat plenty of Rosella's Pizza in my honor."
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