My Co-Op Experience: General Internal...

My Co-Op Experience: General Internal Medicine Unit by Kristina Duricic

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Written by Kristina Duricic

How it Started

My name is Kristina Duricic and I am currently a grade 12 student attending high school in Hamilton, Ontario. Last semester, I was enrolled in the co-op pro-gram within a hospital placement. Nursing is the career path I plan on pursuing and being able to encounter first hand experiences with professionals in a hospital helped me determine my goals for a career.


The positive experiences I had within the hospital includes that I was able to ‘shadow’ professionals (nurses, doctors, Physio/occupational therapists, etc), observe procedures, see how blood work/glucose levels are taken, vital signs, and much more. Some negatives about being in a hospital co-op was that you are exposed to a busy environment, so you are not always given a task. Initiative is a huge skill you must obtain, as well as not taking things too personally (example: nurse may be too busy to explain/teach, patients can be rude, you may create a bond with a certain patient that passes, etc).

My Favourite Moment

My most memorable moment at my placement was that I was able to learn about IV nurses and their responsibilities. I was able to watch multiple PICC procedures which in the end, had me wanting to become an IV nurse myself. Some surprises that came up during my placement are that I did not know that I would be learning, observing and doing so much. I was also exposed to situations that I now know make me un-comfortable (ex. Bedside chest tube insertion) or excited (procedures, blood work). My goals before starting my co-op was to learn as much as I can about different professions within healthcare. When I was finished my placement, I decided to apply to programs which offer a BScN (bachelor in science of nursing), so I will be able to graduate and become a Registered Nurse.

My Favourite Observations:

  • Blood work
  • PICC procedure
  • Bed baths
  • Wound care
  • Filing/preparing charts
  • Stocked blood carts
  • Helped get items for nurses (blood work/vital signs)
  • Wiped equipment
  • Saw MRI, CT, Ultra-sound

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