Walden Student Success Story: Building Skills and Reputation at Internship Sites

Career Services received an email from Dwayla, a practicum supervisor at a regionally accredited vocational nursing institute, who told us that a Walden student completed a practicum at their site and made such a positive impression that they were interested in recruiting our MSN students and alumni for possible Nursing faculty teaching positions at their institute. I spoke with Dwayla by phone to find out what factors contributed to creating such a positive impression of the Walden student that she decided to reach out to our university for additional MSN students and alumni.

Although Dwayla was not familiar with Walden University, she had initially agreed to hire our student as the student presented a quality career portfolio that included her background, Walden practicum expectations, general information about our university and the MSN program, readily available contact information, and clearly defined practicum goals and requirements. The student’s quality application materials helped build confidence in her ability to contribute to the practicum site. Throughout the practicum Dwayla found that the student’s greatest assets were that “she was friendly, open to learning, and willing to share what she knows.”

Additionally, the student brought her prior experience working at a STD clinic with low income women to the practicum site. She took her experience, identified a need, and worked with her supervisor to create an opportunity to further develop her skills. As part of the practicum, she provided lectures to vocational nursing students on STDs in the OB setting. During the practicum, the student gained knowledge of pharmacology and onsite clinical/high fidelity simulations. Dwayla said that the student’s “willingness to observe a variety of didactic and clinical learning experiences helped her become a successful lecturer and instructor.”

Now that the practicum is over, Dwayla said that the Walden student (and future alumna) plans to continue teaching part-time at the vocational institute in 2010. Along with building her skills at the master’s level, the student built a reputation for herself and the Walden community at large. These positive experiences provide opportunities that stretch beyond meeting practicum requirements, and into creating mutually beneficial relationships between individuals, communities, and institutions.

Written by Dina Bergren, Career Services Advisor.

If you have a success story to share, please email us at:  careerservices@waldenu.edu.

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