Monthly Archives: January 2019

Career Night: Where Students and Professionals Connect (and what to expect)

WHAT

On January 30, BYU College of Nursing’s first ever Career Night will provide an opportunity for you to sit down and talk with health care professionals. Nursing students semesters one through four are especially encouraged to attend. Please join us for this rare opportunity!

WHY

Deven Jennings, a Charge Nurse, says, “It should be the goal of every nurse to find purpose and meaning in their chosen specialty. When you find your passion, you will find the fulfillment that the nursing profession has to offer.”

While the nursing program provides extensive curriculum, it is not able to cover every career possible. And there are several options out there. For example, did you know you could become a forensic nurse? Have you ever considered being a school nurse? Career Night offers you a chance to learn about a variety of careers, ask professionals about their day-to-day lives, and know what you need to do to reach your potential.

WHO

Over 20 local professionals, including alumni, will come to talk about their careers. If you want to learn about being an ambulatory OB/GYN nurse, you can. If you are interested in law, a nurse attorney will be there. Maybe being an emergency department nurse fascinates you. You can learn how to become one. Other careers include critical care nurse, geriatric nurse, home health pediatric nurse, oncology nurse, and nurse educator. Professionals from all these areas and more want to share their knowledge with you.

“There is value in looking for an experience after graduation that will help you solidly develop your skills,” says Tiffany Noss, a Nurse Practitioner. “If you put in the time and effort to build a solid foundation when you graduate, you can go anywhere.”

Feeling overwhelmed by the options? Curtis Newman, Director of Medical Services, gives this advice: “Be flexible. Gain experience in different areas. Never be afraid to ask questions. Always be learning new skills and look for new knowledge.” Meeting with these qualified nurses can kick-start your journey to your future career.

WHEN AND WHERE

We invite you to join us for Career Night on January 30, at The Student Wilkinson Center room 3228 from 6:30 – 8:00 pm. You will be given the opportunity to have five, 12-minute rotations with health care professionals. Please be aware that seating at each table is limited. Ice cream sundaes will be served.

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All the Good We Will Do

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Student Mikaela Heyland. Photo courtesy of Winter 2018-19 President’s Report.

Nurses in training at BYU work in the nursing lab with manikins that display symptoms like real patients or even talk.

Mikaela Heyland, a soon-to-be-graduate of the College of Nursing, says, “Now that I’ve worked in real hospitals, I realize that sometimes patients are emotional, angry, or just need to talk. I am better prepared because of the lab.”

She adds, “At BYU I’m gaining education for my career; I’m also receiving a spiritual education. I have grown because of classmates, professors, roommates, wards, and devotionals.”

Because this is her final semester, Heyland participated in the August graduation ceremony. Sitting there with 60 of her classmates, the significance of her BYU experience dawned on her. “We are all going out into the world to make a difference,” she says. “I thought about all the good we will do.”

Heyland is grateful to have received a scholarship. As an international student (she is from Canada), her work options are limited, so funding her studies at BYU has been challenging. “Someone’s donation lightened my burden,” she says. She continues working at a local hospital while finishing her coursework.

**republished from the Winter 2018-19 President’s Report 

Student Spotlight: Elizabeth Eide

By Jessica Tanner

Elizabeth Eide stood in an emergency room. Doctors and nurses rushed in and out, performing tests. Eide assisted them as the patient’s condition worsened. It would become one of Eide’s most profound experiences in the nursing program. Not just because it was challenging, but also because it solidified her love for nursing.

Eide is a sixth-semester nursing student focusing her studies in the ER and ICU. Surprisingly, she came close to not applying for the program. Her first fascination for medicine came from an anatomy class in high school. When she came to college, she knew she wanted something service-oriented. “I really needed that human interaction component,” she explains. But watching friends and peers struggle through prerequisites of the nursing program intimidated her. She tried for teaching, but it was not long before something called her back to medicine.

That something was Grey’s Anatomy. Although now Eide recognizes the popular television show is unrealistic, watching it re-sparked that interest from high school. She says, “I just remembered how much I loved the body, how much it fascinated me, and how emergency medicine was just exciting.” She was determined to give it a shot. Since becoming a nursing student, Eide has not looked back.

That led her to days like the one at the ER. Eide stayed with the patient as their status deteriorated. “I pretty much watched their entire decline,” Eide remembers. But the nursing program is not just about observation. It is hands-on. Eide was glad to help with critical yet simple tasks such as pouring sterile water onto a tray so the doctor could insert a catheter. The patient was taken to the trauma bay and then to the ICU to receive proper care.

It is essential to be there with a patient, but it is equally important to help those that are there for them. Eide took the time to help the patient’s family member. “It was a very scary situation for them,” Eide recalls. “I had the chance to just sit there with them and explain what was going on and ask what they needed.  And that is such a crucial and sacred part of nursing.”

Nurses spend the most time with the patient and their loved ones. “We meet complete strangers on their worst days ever, their most vulnerable times,” Eide says. “That’s really a sacred privilege because you have the opportunity to teach them, and to comfort them, and to educate them, and to be there for them.”

When not focusing on nursing, Eide balances her life with fun, rest, and enjoying unique college experiences. “I’ve made it a point throughout my nursing career to make sure I take care of myself and remember that nursing is not my whole life,” she says. She enjoys dancing, hiking, and watching movies. She also has a hidden talent: impersonations. Top picks include Brittany Spears, Shakira, Sarah Palin, and Kermit the Frog.

Though she admits it is surreal to be graduating, Eide is looking forward to the next step in her life. “BYU’s nursing program is really good and they prepare you really well…we have over 200 clinical hours in our capstone so we get a lot of hands-on experience,” she explains. It is an intimidating change but Eide believes in God’s help. “I feel like this is my calling so I have no doubt that in the time that I need it, I’ll be blessed.” With that confidence, Eide turns to the next chapter of her life.

New Display: Medicine During the Restoration

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Fourth floor display in the Kimball Tower. Photo by employee Quincey Taylor.

By Mindy Longhurst

Have you ever wondered how the medicine of the timeperiod affected the Restoration and the beginnings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints? Third-semester nursing student Savannah Williams studied this topic last fall for a semester-long project for her Foundations of the Restoration class. The assignment was to spend at least 12 hours working on a project that related to the topics that were discussed in the course. The class focused on the First Vision, the translation of the Book of Mormon and ended with the settling of Salt Lake City. Williams felt like she should study something she was passionate about, so naturally, she decided to study how the medicine of the period affected the Restoration.

In her project, which she spent well over 12 hours completing, Williams focused on three major historical events where the medicine of the day impacted the Restoration. Her first focus of the study was the experience of Joseph Smith’s leg operation when he was a young boy. Joseph Smith had typhoid fever which caused an infection inside his leg called osteomyelitis. Dr. Nathan Smith, one of the most educated doctors in the United States, was the only doctor in the United States that could perform Joseph Smith’s leg operation correctly. Dr. Smith happened to live close enough to the Smith’s to perform the surgery. Dr. Nathan Smith was well beyond his time when it came to medical procedures, especially this leg operation.

Before the surgery, Joseph Smith Jr. is quoted saying, “I will do whatever is necessary to be done to have the bone taken out… The Lord will help me; I shall get through.” The faith of the young boy was evident. An Ensign article from June 2013 explains the impact of this surgery on the Restoration, “Joseph’s childhood surgery helped to make it possible for him to participate in the Restoration of the gospel physically. While we often think of the work of the Restoration as a spiritual work, it also required strenuous physical effort from the Prophet Joseph Smith. He walked, marched, ran, and rode on horseback to lead the work. He hefted and hid the plates, eluded enemies, and led a growing Church from New York to Ohio, Missouri, and Illinois. He led Zion’s Camp, endured imprisonment, drained swamps, constructed temples, and built cities.” (“Joseph Smith’s Boyhood Surgery” Vivian M. Adams)

Williams’ next focus was on the surroundings of the death of Alvin, Joseph’s eldest brother. Alvin Smith was sick with intestinal problems. Their town’s physician was away, so a neighboring town’s inexperienced physician came to the Smith home. Alvin was given calomel, a toxic salt of mercury used as a cathartic. Unfortunately, he died four days after receiving the calomel. Alvin’s last words to Joseph were about doing everything in his power to obtain the record, which is the Book of Mormon.

The third area of William’s focus was on malaria. Malaria was a huge concern during the Saints’ time in Nauvoo. Nauvoo was swampland, which meant there were lots of mosquitoes, especially those carrying the malaria disease. The disease is typically manifested by severe recurrent chills and fever, often with jaundice, sweating, and fatigue. Even the prophet Joseph Smith was hit with the disease. An account from Brigham Young’s journal explains the miraculous healings that took place. His journal reads, “July 22, 1839.—Joseph arose from his bed of sickness, and the power of God rested upon him. He commenced in his own house and door-yard, commanding the sick, in the name of Jesus Christ, to arise and be made whole, and they were healed according to his word. He then continued to travel from house to house from tent to tent upon the bank of the river, healing the sick as he went until he arrived at the upper stonehouse, where he crossed the river in a boat, accompanied by several of the Quorum of the Twelve, and landed in Montrose.”

When talking to Williams about her studying the medical perspective of the Restoration, she explains how much of an impact it truly had on the events that led to the establishment of The Church of Jesus Christ again on the earth. Her testimony of God’s work was strengthened. She explains, “I was worried about how spiritual the project would be. But as I researched more about Nathan Smith, Alvin and the things in Nauvoo it showed me how God really is involved in so many ways in our lives. He really did lead the Restoration.”

You can see Williams’ display on the fourth floor of the Kimball Tower by the elevators.

Graduate Student Creates Coolsculpting Guide for Nurse Practitioners

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Photo of Harper. Photo by college employee Andrew Holman.

By Quincey Taylor

Body image is a hot topic in today’s society. From weight loss pills to diet regimens, it’s important for individuals to take the safe option for their own body type. Coolsculpting, also known as cryolipolysis, is one of the newest options on the market for individuals to change their body shape. Millie Harper, second year graduate student in the BYU College of Nursing, is creating a guide with the help of associate dean and professor Dr. Jane Lassetter for nurse practitioners to become more informed about this procedure in order to give the best care and advice to their patients.

It all started when Lassetter was at a beauty salon and noticed the coolsculpting procedure being done. “That didn’t really sit well with her,” explains Harper, “She thought that that should be something that should be overseen by health providers. She wanted to investigate further about the requirements and the risks and see if that was something that should be done in a beauty salon.”

Since then, Lassetter has done extensive research and has enlisted the help of Harper, acting as the chair of Harper’s writing project. This scholarly paper, which takes the place of Harper’s thesis, will act as a guide for nurse practitioners who may have patients who are interested in coolsculpting. Harper expounds that this will allow nurses to answer patients’ questions like, “Am I candidate? Would this be a good option for me? Is this something I should investigate further?” This guide will allow practitioners to be able to direct them to the best option.

In many cases, coolsculpting has provided lasting results for localized fat reduction. The procedure essentially freezes – and kills – fat cells in the body with a gel vacuum which are then reabsorbed into the system. Many times the process is focused on a certain area of the body, like the abdomen or upper arms. This isn’t necessarily a weight loss procedure, however, it focuses more on the sculpting of the body into a desirable shape.

Harper tells of the risks that are involved with the procedure, especially if the facility is questionable. She says, “Putting a cold device on your skin for 30 minutes isn’t always a good idea.” The biggest risk is frostbite, but other risks include increasing lipid levels and changing the chemical nature inside your body. Many times the individuals operating the machines have attended only a three-day course, and are only overseen from a distance by medical spa professionals.

It is important for nurses to be informed about this procedure because of its growing popularity. Body image is a big issue for a lot of people,” Harper says, “It’s important to be educated about it.”

 

From Victim of Car Theft to Victor of Life

By Jessica Tanner

Finals week as a nursing student is already tough, but for Keeley Austin – a fifth-semester student in the nursing program – coming home to find her Subaru Outback missing was a new level of stress.  Austin not only had final exams, but also worked doing hospice visits that required her to drive to her patients. She and her husband searched other possible parking spots for the car, hoping they had just parked it somewhere else. But Austin felt sure of where she had last parked it, always being careful when it comes to the car. “I check for my car to make sure it’s there every day,” she explains.

After having no luck with the search, they contacted the local police who registered the missing car. Meanwhile, Austin and her husband kept up the search. They even spotted a similar car being sold on KSL. Austin was eager to check it out. However, that vehicle turned out not to be theirs.

Though Austin posted about the event to warn others in the Provo area, the outreach that she received from friends and peers was reassuring. “Everyone was super supportive,” she says. “Everyone reached out, saying if you need rides we’re here for you, which was awesome.” Thanks to the help, they were able to get through the next few car-less days.

It was actually on a grocery run with a friend giving her a ride that Austin spotted her car at last. “My heart was just so happy and scared,” she remembers. From the clicking noises and heat emitting from the car, she could tell the driver had just left it. That made Austin feel violated. Peeking inside, she could see their things were missing. But any loss was overcome by the relief that they had finally found it. They contacted the police and watched the car until the police arrived.

“It’s a bummer that it happened to me, but it worked out in the end,” Austin reflects, relating how she grew from the experience. She learned that car-theft in the area is frequent because most college cars are older and easier to break into. She also learned how to prevent future theft, such as with the steering wheel lock they now own. Most are not aware of these useful gadgets. When Austin bought one, the employee at AutoZone said it was the first he had sold. “It’s a good reassurance,” says Austin. “Maybe someone can break into my car and steal my stuff, but they can’t take my car!”

The experience gave Austin a fresh perspective, moving forward with a confidence in her ability to get through challenges. Not only did they have their car stolen, but their house also flooded soon after. As she faces another stressful semester, and an upcoming study abroad to Fiji, she says, “Now I feel like nothing can affect me. What are material possessions anyway? God gives it to us; it was His in the first place, He can have it back.”

Above all, the outreach they received was priceless. “I just felt love,” Austin remembers. “It made it easier to cope.” When stressed about an appointment with a patient or getting groceries, she could remember, “I don’t have a car, but I have all these friends that are willing to help out. We can get through this situation just fine.”