PEARLS OF WISDOM FROM MEMBERS OF THE LAST WMEP CLASS
(In no particular order.)
I recommend getting the “official” WOCN flashcards, available from the WOCNCB website. These cards are set up in a true question/MC answer format, and they also explain the rationale for the correct answer. The website states that they may take 10-12 days to deliver, but I ordered mine and they were at my house 2 days later. If you didn’t order them before you started the onsite portion of the class, you could still order them and have them delivered to you before the end of the onsite class, so you’d get some benefit from them. This format really helps to develop the process about eliminating the wrong answers and studying the stem of the question to arrive at the correct answer. Also helps it you tend to over-think the question. At times, some of the class exam questions have come from these cards.
You can order other wound care flash cards from Amazon (CWOCN Exam Flashcards), but don't do this if you're only going to order 1 set of cards (get the WOCNCB cards instead). These cards are formatted in Q/A format, but the questions are generalized (not narrowly-focused) and the answers are in paragraph form. This information is helpful for overall knowledge review, but it isn’t the same format the certification exam questions or class exam questions are formatted.
Consider sharing a house with classmates: Air bnb, Vrbo, etc. There are lots of options if you start looking early enough. I shared a house with 2 classmates and it worked out really well, even though we were strangers at the beginning. Cooking, laundry, studying- all were easier in a home-like setting. And it was less expensive. Living in Seattle for 3 weeks is a pricey endeavor. We were able to split the cost and it came out to $53 per night, per person (including all taxes and fees) ($48 before taxes/fees).
Expensive, but maybe necessary. Unfortunately, you probably won’t know where your clinical will be until the first day of onsite class. Since I was in a house about a mile from campus, I knew ahead of time that I’d need a car. My clinical site was in Kirkland, so technically I could have taken public transport (2.5 hours one-way) or uber ($50+ one-way), but a car was definitely the most cost-effective and time-effective choice for me. It also made trips to Safeway or Target easy to fit into my schedule.
-VRBO or Air BNB-I got a cute studio within walking distance of class for $68/night. I enjoyed the daily walks after being in class all day. There were also electric bikes all around to rent for fun.
-Don't rent a car unless your clinicals are not in Seattle proper. I took the school shuttle or UBER and it was much cheaper than rental cost and parking costs at facilities.
-Take a weekend day off to enjoy the city sights and rest the brain.
I HIGHLY recommend going in on a house together. I’m ordinarily a “hole up and study all by myself” type of person. I still did a lot of that. But having classmates to bounce things off of, clarify ideas with, and even have a bit of companionship with when you just cant study anymore was a huge bonus. Not to mention that having a real kitchen was something I wouldn’t want to live without (a few days are ok, but not for 3 weeks!)
Transportation: I rented a car and I would do it again. I cant even imagine how early you’d have to get up in order to make it to an 8am clinical with public transit or even a car service. Considering how far out clinicals are located, car hire services can’t be tremendously cheaper than just renting a car. Emily chose not to rent a car, but she only made it as far as the first day of clinical before she changed her mind & rented one for the remainder of the program. It’s painful to pay to have it just sit at your curb (and especially painful if you’re paying extra for parking), but it’s just not feasible to expect to rideshare unless you’re willing to wait (sometimes for hours) for another student to pick you up/drop you off.
Clinical Sites: Wow! I DO like to drive, but be careful what you wish for! I was expecting to drive in the greater Seattle area, I wasn’t prepared to drive to Bellingham. The drive itself was easy (it’s “opposite” from rush hour commute traffic), but a 90 min drive equals 3 hours out of your day. When you want every available minute to study (or wash one of the 3 different outfits you brought to wear!), the time adds up. It was doubly painful as my body clock runs late now from working a 3-11p shift for years. Getting up to make it Bellingham by 8am meant getting up at 5am. When my body doesn’t start to go to sleep till midnight or later, that was brutal. I was really looking forward to incorporating our new knowledge into the clinical setting… I did get some wound debridement experience at the outpatient clinic, and an opportunity to place a wound vac at the medical center, but overall, there was very little “hands-on” at the inpatient site. The census was unusually low, so perhaps that was a bit of a factor, but overall, the med center was a disappointing use of time. Not sure how to improve on that one….
FINAL DINNER: I really enjoyed the vendor’s presentation/product.
OVERALL: The course work, both online and onsite was excellent. I’d highly recommend the program to anyone considering this path. I’d love to have more time with the vendors & their “hands-on” practice times. I’d cut down on the lecture content of some of the presenters (detailed previously, so I won’t go into it now). But overall, most of it was really good, just an incredibly large amount of info to absorb in a limited time.
1. Online - Both books are very informational. Just determines which format you prefer. I read the one by Bryant prior to listening to the lectures. I then skimmed the core curriculum and took the quiz at the end of the chapters. This way of studying put everything together for myself. Always stay ahead of the game with reading and start the assignments "right from the beginning" as some may take longer than anticipated. Second with assignments follow the instructions and grading criteria. Sample submissions also very helpful.
2. Onsite - You are going to be busy. First is the time change. Second you will be overwhelmed after the first day, but the staff will help you calm down, and are wonderful in answering your questions etc. Just like on-line, do not get behind.
3. Study aids - I personally used the flash cards on my flight out - during the onsite - and on the way home. It gets your mind on how to understand the question