4 Things I Learned from My Nursing Mentor

Arielle Samuel with Sophia Overton in regalia.

Arielle Samuel, BS '22, at graduation with mentor Sophia Overton, MSEd, RN.

-By Arielle Samuel, BS '22

Being a part of the Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) mentorship program has been very beneficial. 

The mentoring relationship that I have acquired has helped me to foster personal and professional growth, which has helped me to become a better nursing student. This has been an eye-opening experience and I am grateful for all that I have learned from my mentor. I do believe that my mentor has prepared me to be a great nurse one day. 

Here are four things I learned from my nursing mentor.

1. How to take advantage of opportunities.

My mentor has taught me the importance of taking advantage of all of the opportunities that are presented to me. I have developed a new willingness to accept challenges. New opportunities are often rare, and may not always last forever. Therefore, I have learned that I am doing myself a disservice when I decline a new opportunity due to self-doubt and feeling unprepared for a change. I should never allow fear to be the reason why I do not make the most of new opportunities. I have learned to look at opportunities as a great way to learn, gain more experience and further my skill set.  

2. How to trust my intuition.

My mentor has also encouraged me to trust my intuition and to be confident in my own decisions. Trusting my intuition has allowed me to stay true to myself and helps to guide me on a path that is best suited for me. I have gained an understanding of combining logic and reason with my intuition. I have used this technique when performing patient care. In clinical settings, there are many instances when something does not seem “right” with a patient. The patient’s behavior may have changed or the clinicals signs may not always be congruent with the patient’s actual condition. Trusting my intuition allows me to take the necessary precautions in order to prevent further deterioration in the patient’s condition. I then conduct an assessment and I notify someone about my patient’s condition as soon as possible.   

3. The importance of self-care.

I have also learned about the importance of incorporating self-care activities into my everyday routine. As a nursing student, it’s very easy to feel overwhelmed by all of that is required. I spend a lot of time in clinicals, completing assignments, studying and working. However, my mentor has encouraged me to perform self-care activities in order to reduce any stress that I may encounter, to help build resilience and to protect my mental health. Over the last couple of months, meditation has become my self-care activity. It helps me stay to stay focused, it provides mental clarity and it helps to enhance my self-awareness. Meditating is my way of taking care of myself so that I can take care of others.  

4. The different career paths for nurses.

My mentor has also given me insight into the many opportunities that are available for nurses. Prior to conversing with my mentor, I was unaware of the many nursing career paths that I could embark on. I was also unsure of the field of nursing that I wanted to pursue after graduation. During one of our many conversations, I shared with her that I did not want to do bedside nursing for the rest of my life. She told me that I did not have to do that if I did not want to.  She shared with me the endless opportunities that I could take advantage of. For example, she told me about nurses that have started their own businesses and have helped to provide medical care to underserved communities. She also mentioned that some nurses were able to create their job positions within hospitals. With her help, I have a better understanding of what I would like my nursing career path to be.

Thank you

I would like to give a special thanks to both Sophia Overton and Shadevia Marshall. I am appreciative of all the advice and support that they have bestowed upon me. They have helped me to become a better student and have always encouraged me to be the best version of myself. They have also provided me with the necessary tools to help me become a great nurse one day. Again, I thank you and I will be sure to pay it forward. 

Published February 7, 2022