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Waiariki Nursing Students Rank Among Best In NZ

Waiariki Nursing Students Rank Among Best In NZ Again

News Release
For immediate release
January 20, 2005

Waiariki Nursing Students Rank Among Best In New Zealand Again For four years in a row, students from the Bachelor of Nursing programme at Waiariki Institute of Technology have claimed top rankings in state final nursing exams.

Waiariki nursing student Sarah Edgar's 90 percent was the second highest mark in the country for the Nursing Council of New Zealand's 2004 state exams. Two other Waiariki students Donna Stewart and Kathryn Patton were third equal with 88 percent.

This is also the first year Waiariki Institute of Technology international students have graduated in the Bachelor of Nursing and sat the state exams. One of those students, Shan Shan Yan from China, passed with 84 percent.

State finals are sat once a nursing student has completed the three year Bachelor of Nursing degree and leads to students becoming Registered Nurses.

Head of School in Nursing and Health Studies Maureen Kelly says the consistent success of Waiariki nursing students passing state exams with such distinction shows the quality of the programme and of the teaching staff.

"There is a shortage of nurses in New Zealand and fifty-two well qualified graduates are now heading into jobs. We're very proud of their achievement."

Sarah Edgar says although she is surprised by coming second in the country, she is not surprised by the outstanding results achieved by her class because of the way the course is run.

"The number one feature of the course is the tutors. Waiariki is a smaller campus and the tutors are very accessible. When you need extra help they go out of their way to make themselves available and to assist you in any way possible. The camaraderie there is amazing too."

As a school leaver Sarah had not considered nursing, but was looking for a lifetime career. Word-of-mouth about Waiariki's course encouraged her to look more closely at studying nursing.

"Nursing has challenged me both academically and personally. It's pushed me right outside my comfort zones, teaching me how deal with people in stressful situations. It's all about being a skilful professional, helping people."

Sarah has started working on one of Waitakere Hospital's three new medical wards with a view to consolidating her general nursing skills. In the future she plans to specialise in emergency or palliative nursing.

Maureen Kelly says the intake for the 2005 year is considerably higher than previous years.

"This is the twentieth year nursing has been offered at Waiariki and it just keeps getting stronger every year. It's fair to say people are coming to Waiariki to study nursing because of the reputation created by our past successes," she says.

Waiariki's Bachelor of Nursing degree is offered in both Rotorua and Tauranga.


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