My week on twitter

Megan Kumeta – @MeganKumeta

(Adult Nursing – March 2015 intake)

April 20-27 2015

When I first heard you could participate in the curating of Salford’s student nursing account, it was my first ever day at university.  An hour before this I stood on my own outside the main hall on Peel campus.  As I stared at the steps, I had one of those cheesy epiphanies and thought, ‘this first step is the first step to the rest of my life’.  I also thought of all the millions of students who had maybe looked at those steps as I did, and had those same thoughts as I did, ‘this is the beginning of something big’.

 

So fast forward an hour, and yes, I could curate the student nursing account if I wished.  My first thought, ‘I wont have time for that!’ my second thought, ‘no, just keep your head down and get on with the work you will no doubt be given’. My third thought (yes my third thought), ‘But it would look great on my CV, definite brownie points!’  And with that, I registered it to the part of my brain reserved for “remember that for later”.

 

So yes, in all honesty, my final thought was that it would be great for my CV in three years time.  Three. Years. Time.  Not the most rational of thought but hey, that is why I am at university now.   So I booked on and was given the date.

 

My first day was a bit overwhelming.  For my own twitter account, I have an over-reactive ‘block’ finger.  I do not want Jim-Bob Smith, harmonica extraordinaire from Timbucktwo, USA following my carefully chosen thoughts, feelings, and interests.  Because of this, I have about 300 followers.  The Nursing Students page has nearly 4000 followers!  This was a shock to my system, and trying to weave through hundreds of posts was definitely a learning experience.  I decided to not put any pressure on myself.  Look at what you can, tweet what you can, learn what you can.

 

By the end of day two I was in the swing of things. I could distinguish good bits of information from the not so good, and I was beginning to open up and ask questions of my audience.  Not many replied.  I think of the whole experience that was the biggest struggle, getting the wider audience, outside university, to engage.  Re-tweeting of the posts were plentiful, but not an engaged conversation.  This is something I will try to encourage next time I curate.

 

Yes I said, ‘next time I curate’. By the end of the week, I did not want it to come to a finish.  I made some fantastic connections with Salford Nursing Society, WeNurses, NurChat, and fellow students and colleagues from Salford University.  I felt like I was part of a team, a family, and a community.  Florence Nightingale said that “happiness is the gradual realization of a worthy ideal or goal”, and that is exactly how I felt.  No longer did I feel like curating for an impressive CV, I wanted to do it to feel part of a group who wants to deliver the best ideas, and the best tips, for promoting a better client journey.  I wanted to share in this information because I want to know the best ideas and the best tips, for being the best student nurse, and ultimately registered nurse, I can be for the benefit of my future clients.

I would recommend this fantastic experience to everyone.  Approach it with an open mind, and willingness to learn something new.  Engage in it to make you think what kind of nurse you want to be.  I cannot wait to curate again!

“We don’t know what we are capable of until we try”

Nicole Carter (@poppynicole1

When I started my course in Adult nursing I never for a minute thought that I would be asked to curate the Salford University Nursing account (@nursingSUni). I follow the nursing account and truth be known, look up to the other students who have previously curated with inspiration, professionalism and in my opinion bravery. I see people who have curated quite knowledgeable and did not think I was capable of this.

It was first mentioned during my Safeguarding module and Moira created #SVGSe13 for our group to post materials to, in relation to the course and I did find this very useful. I found myself reading and learning at times of the day and evening when it would never have occurred to me to pick up a book. It made learning fun and I can confidently say other students and myself found this beneficial to our learning.

In the same way I found Moira’s module, the Nursing account in a similar respect does the same thing. It is fun to follow, fun to read, a real great way to interact and learn, keeps you up to date with materials relevant to nursing and as I felt myself grow on the course, I found myself taking part in chats and discussions that I never would of thought I was capable of. The support from lecturers and other peers is a real lovely thing!

The day before I was due to curate the account, I knew it was important to me as I was up and down through the night worrying about how I would do. On the 12th February I took part in a #wenurses chat about ‘from evidence to practice’ http://www.wecommunities.org/tweet-chats/chat-details/369 and to me I feel this is a real achievement I will never forget.

Curating the nursing account has been a real privilege and is something, if welcomed back, I hope to do in the future. It was exciting and challenging in a positive way but I learnt so much, I felt the responsibility and commitment to me was big and I did want it to be interesting for other users who follow.

For anyone interested or has “hummed and hawed” about curating, go for it, the support is top class, you will find it a real achievement and fun, you will learn and if you feel, oh maybe in a few months, I can’t do it. Go for it…. We don’t know what we are capable off until we try.

Best of luck nursing students for the rest of the term and a big welcome to the our March 15 intake.

Curating for the second time

Hi, I’m Twitter user @LisaxDx2072 and have literally just completed my CYP degree (so a BIG hello to March 2015 students). I have curated the @nursingSUni Twitter account back in November 2014 and thought curating it again would be a nice way to finish. This time, because it was the final week for March 2012 students I co-curated with one of the lecturers which worked well.

 

During my first time curating I was quite apprehensive as I wasn’t sure what to expect but this time I was really looking forward to it. Last time I was a serial re-tweeter however this time I had the confidence to post items myself. I found out about a couple of National and International days and posted information on those as well as asking questions, for example suggestions and strategies for new nurses.

 

Curating the @nursingSUni twitter account also gave me the confidence to start writing my own blog about the transition from student nurse to newly qualified nurse. If you are looking for a new skill or something different to add to your CV I would definitely recommend having a go at curating the @nursingSUni twitter account. I made reference to curating the account in my personal profile when applying for jobs and during my interview and I’m sure it helped to make me stand out. There is lots of support available from staff and students if you need it and it’s a great way to connect with professionals you may not ordinarily get the opportunity to. It’s also a good way to get involved in raising the profile of the School; particularly the pre-registration Nursing programmes.

Curating @nursingSUni provided a vital link to university for @soontobenurses

Another week of curating the school account, and as per previous experiences I learnt a lot as well as talked a lot. For me curating the account provided a vital link to university whilst I am on an interrupt. There are however lots of great reasons to take a turn, be it a week or a day. If you do a week and have prior commitments during that week, someone will always take over the reins for that period.

Curating the student account is a fantastic way of communicating with peers to get and give support. Curating the account also offers a floor for healthy debate about topics important to students, this week we looked at the lack of nurses and the reasons behind that, the way in which students interact and how initiatives can be positive or negative. Thank you to @createyourself9 for sparking some particularly interesting ones.

Alongside the followers that you may already have on your personal account you begin to engage with other tweeters that you may not normally, or do not know are out there. A result of this was an invite to spend the day with the lovely @juneinhe.

On the Wednesday I tweeted from the @MHtodaymag conference and as a result was approached to complete a guest blog for the publication.

As well as support from peers there is also invaluable support from lecturers and professionals from the world of twitter. If you are looking to extend your social reach and develop network connections then curating the twitter account is an invaluable tool in doing so. Curating the twitter account is much advised and having students from across branches, as well as academic staff really broadens the horizons of students that follow, as well as staff!

#SoMe is becoming more readily recognised as a CPD tool and also a way to learn about events that are upcoming that may be of use to yourself or that will be of use to others that you can share. Curating the twitter account can also be used to meet a PDP goal for instance if you wish to develop your communication skills.
I would invite all students to have a go and those who are worried should know there will always be someone on hand to offer support, students and staff alike.

As well as students there is definitely something to be said for the contribution of academics to the curation and would be a fabulous experience for them and resource for students across the twitterverse.
I shall of course be back
Anna

Second time around

Blog on curating @nursingSUni 6/10/2014-12/10/2014 by @PennyFawthrop 

I decided to curate this account for a second time because I was curious to find out whether my growing experience of Tweeting would enable me to engage more, and I chose to do it during an annual leave week in order to dedicate additional time to it.
My initial research resulted in finding several awareness events that were taking place during the week, so I used them as a starting point for my tweets: Rethink were taking part in Schizophrenia Awareness Week culminating on Friday 10th October with World Mental Health Day, which was also focusing on schizophrenia, so I posted fact and fiction information about the illness. To continue with the mental health theme it was Bipolar Awareness Day on Tuesday 7th October. I wanted to promote the inspiring work that hospices carry out on a daily basis during Hospice Care week, which culminated with World Hospice and Palliative Care Day. October was also breast cancer awareness month.
As a new intake of  nursing students here at the University of Salford had recently started using Twitter I posted every day about influential accounts that I think they should follow and explaining why; a lot of Plymouth University students had also begun to follow our account, so I thanked each one personally for doing that. I believe that supporting our peers through the unique demands of a nursing course is important for our success. I also promoted the benefits to students of curating our Twitter account in order to try and find some new curators as volunteers.
There was a student-led conference taking place here about Cultural Competence across the Lifespan that I decided to tweet from to support our March 12 cohort and create awareness of an issue that is crucial to the nursing community. I also tweeted from a study day on living and dying with dementia, a subject that is important to me for personal reasons.
I took part in two Twitter chats this week: a Nursing Times twitchat on Sightsavers in Malawi discussing the work of eye specialists and the challenges that they face; and a WeNurses chat about how to keep nurses happy.
I thoroughly enjoyed curating the account this second time, and I felt a lot more confident participating in Twitter chats and finding topics to focus on during the week. Curating is an outlet to share passion for nursing, and to concentrate on the issues that are important to you but also that may be important to other nursing students who follow the account. If you are new to Twitter, or an experienced tweeter, please consider curating as its fun and you gain so much from it both personally and professionally.

 

Are you looking for a new challenge?

Hi, my name is Lisa (@LisaxDx2072) and I am a 3rd year Children’s nursing student. If you are looking for a new challenge and something a bit different to add to your skill set then curating the @nursingSUni account could just be the thing!

I have used Twitter sporadically for a number of years however, my Twitter use has increased since being at Salford, especially from a more professional perspective. It can be a fantastic information source and an invaluable evidence based learning tool. I admit to being more of a lurker than a tweeter, although I find I am lurking less and tweeting more. I was even ‘Chief Tweeter’ during our Mar12 student led Cultural Competence conference!

I had thought about curating the @nursingSUni account for a while after reading positive feedback from other students however, because of annual leave and so on it took longer than expected.

My week ran from 24th November and I was apprehensive when I first logged on, as I was not sure what to expect. I was even more apprehensive when I saw 16 notifications waiting although the majority were good luck messages and Twitter users favouriting tweets so it wasn’t too bad.

I soon got into the habit of checking the @nursingSUni account on a regular basis, so between lectures, on breaks and so on. I found for me this was an effective strategy rather than checking the account a couple of times a day.

My biggest challenge was the Thursday night @wenurses twitter chat; nimble fingers are definitely required as the tweets come through in quick succession. Overall I managed to keep up and I did really enjoy the experience.

If I were to do anything different next time (if there is a next time!) it would be to have the confidence to post items myself and to reply more often to tweets rather than being a serial retweeter!

I would definitely recommend having a go at curating the @nursingSUni twitter account. Support is available from the whole of the university (staff and students alike) and it feels good to be involved in something that raises the university profile on such a large scale.

As a @nursingSUni twitter curator
You will be an information innovator
Retweeting and favouriting interesting tweets
Responding to comments, new followers to greet
Taking part in Twitter chats
Developing knowledge, increasing the stats
Raising the profile of our great university
And well supported you will be
Until you try it, you cannot comprehend
Why it is something I definitely recommend

“My First Blog”, by Emanuella Acquaviva, 3rd year Mental Health student nurse

Emanuella  Acquaviva, reflects on her week curating the @nursingSUni account

 

“…I had contemplated doing it for few weeks, but now I am glad that I finally did it!!” My week curating the undergraduate nursing twitter account @nursingSUni (14th July-21st July).

 

On the first day, as soon as I logged into the account I felt overwhelmed by the amount of messages appearing on the screen, but seeing encouragements coming through the notification icon from nursing lecturers made me feel more at ease and knowing that I was fully supported.

The week began with the aim to encourage more students to use the university twitter account as a way to communicate with others (professionals and fellow students) who shared the same passion for nursing and had a common goal, which is to make a difference in people lives. My other goal was to raise the account profile and at this point my ambition didn’t stop: I wanted to increase the number of followers aiming to reach 1,700 followers from the 1,639 followers, and I felt proud that this was achieved.

 

In a world where the nursing landscape is changing, I believe that it is fundamental to be fully informed of what is happing around us, and the use of social media is definitely the way forward. However, I do understand that the digital world is not for everybody, and initially I too was very sceptical about being part of it. The use of social media is a controversial issue and there is an ongoing debate as to whether its use is beneficial to its users. I only started using twitter a few months ago after a friend of mine suggested that this would be useful for me being a student, and keep me informed about current affairs, and so I did. At first I felt a bit lost but soon became familiar with it and started enjoying taking part in chats that discussed nursing, health and social care issues.

 

On Monday 14/07/14 PhD Cristina Vasilica @cristinavas discussed the importance of engagement with social media #someuse and talked about @GMKInet which is a Kidney Information Network developed by kidney patients for kidney patients to provide each other with support and advice. And this is just one of the many good examples of the benefit of engaging with social media.  A great advocate of the use of the social media within the nursing community is Teresa Chinn @AgencyNurse, a registered nurse who strongly believes that “social media has a role to play in getting key conversations going”. The most exciting part of the week was Thursday Night (17/07/14) where I took part in the @wenurses conversation, which was all about patients’ feedback. I felt very strong about this topic. For those who don’t know me, I have been working with later life services over the past ten years and caring for patients with physical, mental and social care needs. So, I was switching from my personal twitter account to the university account, as I wanted my voice to be heard and express my thoughts. The discussion made me aware and gave me insight into how the #wenurses community is extremely passionate and committed to ensure we get it right.

 

Curating the university twitter account has been a great experience, and I feel that tweeting has boosted my confidence. For me it’s all about learning and sharing information, expanding knowledge, and experience in order to understand and promote best practice. Furthermore, I feel that it is important to acknowledge and thank the nursing lecturers who have introduced and created the university twitter account @wlainclair @levylass @neilwithnell who strongly believe in the value of social media in nurse education.

In conclusion, I would recommend curating the account to all student nurses and encourage them to engage with the twitter community to interact and take part in discussion that matters to patients and promote best practice.

‘an opportunity I could not turn down’ curating @nursingSUni by 1st year Student nurse @PennyFawthrop

First Year student nurse Penny Fawthrop reflects on curating @nursingSUni 

Before I started my nursing degree I had a Twitter account, but I never used it. During fresher’s week being active with Twitter for opportunities, networking and professional development was promoted. By the end of that week I had another account, which I am using specifically for professional and health-related purposes. When I initially volunteered to curate the account it was a mixture of courage and wanting to make the most of my time on the course. It was an opportunity I could not turn down. On the Friday before my curating week reality struck and I began to get nervous about the task I was about to take on.

 

Monday 9th June – After logging onto Twitter I noticed posts saying that I was curating the account, and there was no going back. Taking a deep breath I sent my first tweet not knowing what the response would be; however, after receiving three favourites and a retweet I began my week. It was the start of Carer’s Week, so I decided to make that my focus especially on what the university was doing to support it. My second module had just started and I wanted to find out other people’s thoughts on health promotion.

Tuesday 10th June – Daily quotes from RCNstudents captured my attention as they described exactly the sort of nurse I aspire to be. Taking part in a WeNurses chat was a first for me. It was on improving dementia care, and I did find it difficult to keep up with the conversation as tweets came in thick and fast. Despite this it was very informative, and motivated me to join in with more of them.

Wednesday 11th June – Today I tweeted from the DeafNest conference, organised and run by our midwifery students. DeafNest primarily focussed on the experiences of deaf pregnant women and their partners, and how we can change our practice to make their experiences better. An event that everyone involved, and the university, should be proud of. It was also the perfect opportunity to ask whether attending events and conferences is beneficial to students.

Thursday 12th June – With a combination of clinical skill classes and an evening in a forest I was unable to tweet as much today.

Friday 13th June – I found out that it was National Blood Week, campaigning for more people to donate blood. Due to this I wanted to find out who is already a blood donor.

Saturday 14th June – As well as being National Blood Donor Day, it was also a day to congratulate our third year children’s and young people’s nursing students as they got their first jobs. I also wanted to find out who was attending RCN Congress next week.

Sunday 15th June – After retweeting about the last day of Carer’s Week and a request for volunteers to run a fruit and vegetable stall on campus, I finally ended my week with a good luck message to next week’s curator.
This was not only my first experience of curating, but also writing my first ever blog. I have really enjoyed this experience and, as a result, learned a lot about Twitter and improved my confidence. Please take the opportunity to curate this account and see what it can do for you.