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I’m an actual Capella student compensated for posting about my experience at Capella. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

MSN Update – Almost 70% Complete!

*Results for students may vary.

MSN timeline update

I am currently in my 10th of 13 classes; Health Care Policy and Law. It’s definitely challenging because I am not incredibly familiar with this topic at all.  Some courses I am able to progress through faster because I’ve got experience in that area (yay for competency-based and FlexPath!) but others require more time and research if I’m not familiar with them. This is definitely one of those courses!

Also, Capella has a new tool called the Academic Plan. It’s a resource that enables you to have a big picture glance of your progress, which is helpful in a self-paced degree. I was able to see that I am now 67% done! See below for a screenshot of my planner and progress (this is only part of it, you can’t see all the classes I’ve completed at the bottom). Other benefits of this tool are that you can register and move your courses around (self-service!).

 

My goal is to get about one course completed per month, and then do my practicum and capstone full time in October and finish entirely by November 1, 2018.  One of the reasons this is my goal is that my husband and I are expecting our second child December 3, 2018! I’d really like to have this MSN 100% complete before that major life event!

Practicum requirement

One of the aspects of this journey that I receive the most questions about is the practicum. I basically have to complete 100 practicum hours and a capstone project. I am fortunate to work at a hospital with a great system for finding and matching people with preceptors, so the process was rather seamless. I know others who have had a more challenging time identifying a preceptor, so I was pretty thankful for how smooth the process was.

Some of the nurse educators at my facility are actually Capella grads! I had to figure out the area I wanted to complete the practicum and begin the conversation, ensure the organization had a contract with Capella (if not, I would have needed to initiate that process) and identify a preceptor. Because my organization already had a relationship and contract with Capella, it merely required me to meet with one person at the hospital, and a few emails back and forth to make sure the contract was current.  If your site doesn’t have an existing contract, that process can take weeks to situate, so you have to start early!

My focus

My MSN has a Nursing Education focus, so naturally I wanted a preceptor who works in nursing education.  My passion is new graduate nurses and supporting their transition to practice and the organization I work at has an amazing nurse residency program. It’s well-established and the educator who runs it is incredible. She’s a professional speaker, presents at major nursing conferences, and has had outstanding success with the residency program. I’ve heard a lot of positive things about her through the grapevine as well.

I was really hoping I could work with her, but mentally prepared myself for her being unavailable or already with students.  I was so thankful to hear that I was paired with her!  I’ve been supporting new grads in a more informal manner these last five years, so I am elated to see what it’s like to formally do so in a hospital setting.  This is truly the ideal practicum that aligns with my passions. I can’t wait to start!