Starting Your Nursing Career During a Global Pandemic

Submitted by McGill University
September 7, 2020

My name is Sarah I am a 20 year old, graduate from a DEC at Champlain College. I have recently just started working as a CEPI (Candidate à L’exercise de la Profession Infirmière) in a previous COVID hotspot during the first wave of this pandemic. I have never worked as a PAB or an externe during my 3 year studies in CEGEP. This was officially my first job in the nursing career.

First of all, graduating during a global pandemic was not easy. In March, when everything shut down, my stages and classes were all put on pause. We finished our classes online, even though the CEGEP was never prepared to put all the classes online in such a short period of time. It was hard to adjust to this new reality for everyone. My stages at the hospital was suddenly stopped and we never got the chance to finish those very important learning clinical settings. Our very last semester at CEGEP in a nursing DEC is very crucial for our success at the OIIQ exam. But now, because of COVID we didn’t get all the formation we needed. Which means we individually had to put in our own efforts and at the same time start our nursing careers as CEPI in the middle of the pandemic.

I have learned as front liners, how important it is to take the sanitary measures seriously since you never know where COVID could be. As I had experienced in my orientation at the hospital when someone was tested positive after spending 2 days in a classroom learning about our unit. We got tested and turned out nobody caught COVID from that person. This truly showed the importance of wearing a mask at all times can avoid destructive outbreaks in the population and in the hospitals.