The Illinois College of Nursing has always made a conscious effort to recognize the growing needs of their students and facilitate ways to support them.
In 2016, the ICoN staff began to take note that a significant amount of personal statements or scholarship essay responses submitted by prospective students mentioned experiencing a very specific, and often traumatic, event in their life that they felt directly influenced their decision to pursue a career in nursing.
Trauma can be a very stressful event, leading individuals to be very physically or emotionally vulnerable if the situation is not dealt with in a constructive manner. Even though survivors of trauma can often function with some normalcy in their day-to-day activities, these underlying vulnerabilities can be triggered under stressful situations.
These exacerbations and the level of intensity in which it is exhibited can present differently amongst trauma survivors, depending on their level of resilience (or ability to recover from challenges).
So naturally, our concern is for the well-being of our students who may have experienced a traumatic event, making them a vulnerable population, that are now attending a vigorous college program which can be stressful, and then having to enter a high demand workforce, which can be physically and emotionally strenuous.
Since the success of our students is a priority, the College is currently conducting a research study to identify the history of trauma in our students and identify what impact it can have on their experience at the College and in the workplace. Ultimately our goal is to provide resilience training for our students so they feel confident and empowered to overcome any challenge or obstacle placed in front of them in a healthy way.