January 20, 2023
During the academic year 2020-2021, ADN provisional students continued the development of our Joliet Junior College Department of Nursing Peer Mentoring program. During Fall 2020 and Spring 2021, the third semester provisional ADN transitioned seamlessly to virtual peer mentoring due to Covid pandemic campus restrictions.
Virtual peer mentoring was provided using the Teams virtual platform with ADN students leading small group discussions as well as creating a video each semester titled, “ADN Peer Mentors Share their Favorite Tips for Success in Nursing School (Volumes 1 & 2).” These videos have been posted on the Nursing Simulation and Skills Lab Canvas Course home page (Learning Management System) and combined current views of are over 200 times (and counting). Both semesters provided information on the following topics during small group “Study Buddy” virtual meetings: evidence based application-level study strategies; identifying learning styles; NCLEX practice question strategies and interpretation; time management and organization; stress and test anxiety strategies. Students created multiple learning tools including PowerPoints and handouts. In total, 57 first year nursing students attended 14 ADN student led Peer Mentoring Study Buddy virtual sessions. Perhaps most importantly during the pandemic, ADN peer mentors provided support and an important source of connection during the online nature of this year with campus restrictions on in-person learning.
Nursing faculty supported attendance at the peer mentoring sessions by providing course point(s) for working with an ADN Peer Mentor. Each semester, mentees and the ADN student mentors completed surveys to evaluate the Peer Mentoring program. Results demonstrated a high level of satisfaction from both groups, as well as a desire to continue and expand the program. Suggestions from these surveys are incorporated by the new ADN students each semester in a continual quality improvement process. Additionally, induction eligible students mentor incoming third semester ADN provisional students in the development of the next peer mentor project. Each semester, ADN students complete a written report of their project including evaluation data.