My 2015 Resolutions

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1) Finish 1st year at university with success & pass my exams

2) Get a 2-week training as a healthcare assistant & work part-time

3) Learn how to cook 10 yummy dishes

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4) Develop spiritually & grow in faith

5) Get an official proposal from a special person

6) Exercise more and keep fit

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7) Eat healthy

8) Remember to relax

9) Travel abroad

10) Visit my family which I love and miss so much!

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What are your New Year’s Resolutions? Have you thought about 2015?

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What’s in town?

Recently one of my friends had her birthday so we went to town to celebrate and have fun shopping.

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We went to the biggest shopping mall in Norwich to check out the latest fashion trends and see all the sales. During Christmas time we as most students on a budget would always love to see the sign ‘SALE’ around us. :’D

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I bought this red hat for only £3. It should have costed £8 if it hadn’t been for the winter sales. Wohoo! *o* I love it so much!

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Wherever you look around you there are beautiful Christmas decorations, trendy clothes, shiny jewelry, expensive leather goods and anything you could think of. My friends and I went and bought other clothes from different stores and spent all our money.WP_20141218_033 WP_20141218_038

One thing is sure, shopping is fun and helps you deal with stress. Right? I am sure most girls would agree… until you see that your wallet becomes empty at the end of the day.

2014 Flashback

Sometimes I think about LIFE… such a big word. I feel as if I’m riding a roller-coaster which speeds up each year and there is nothing I can do to change it. That is why I will share some of the major events that happened in my life in 2014 with the hope that next year 2015 will be even better.

1) Graduated high-school and had a lovely prom night!

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2) Moved to the UK

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3) Passed my IELTS exam

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4) Learned that for everything good there’s a long queue

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5) Went to Hillsong Conference

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6) Conquered London

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7) Visited Tokyo

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8) Won his heart!

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9) Moved to Norwich

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10) Became a student at University of East Anglia

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lovely Japan

When I was in High School I laid my hands on a book about Japanese history. After reading it I felt interested in Japanese culture, language, food, traditions, people, beliefs etc.

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When I completed my secondary-education I had two offers from two different universities in two different countries (The UK and Denmark):

1. University of East Anglia – BSc Adult Nursing

or

2. Copenhagen Business School – BSc Business, Japanese and Culture

Although I really enjoyed studying about Japanese culture in my free time, my dream was to become a nurse, therefore, I chose to study Nursing.

When I moved to the UK and started my degree I felt like studying Japanese language again. I joined Japan society and met new people who share the same interest as me. During the first meeting I arrived too early and there were only people who were speaking in Japanese. I felt extremely awkward, however, after some time other people from different nationalities came and the ice between us melted as we started talking.

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A few weeks later I was invited to a house party where some very kind Japanese people cooked Japanese food for the guests. We ate ‘katsudon’ which is pork and rice. This was a great time as we played different improvised games and had lots of good laughs.

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Japan society @ UEA is probably one of the most friendly and fun societies to join. If you like learning anything Japan-related and making new friends then this is the right place for any UEA student.

Are you interested in Japanese culture? Share your experience & comment below. Cheers ~

Greetings, December!

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December is the last month of the year. For me this is a special month because it’s filled with some of the merriest celebrations of all: Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve.

Christmas Day in particular is my favourite holiday since people exchange presents and gather together with their friends and family. Since most students at UEA go home for Christmas holidays we exchange gifts in advance. My lovely flatmate gifted me a chocolate Santa, whereas, I gave her a dress in pink since she loves clothes. Although most people are familiar with Santa Claus who brings presents to all the good children it is not the original meaning behind the celebration.

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In Christian tradition Christmas is celebrated as the day when Jesus was born in Bethlehem. Usually, a few days earlier there is a Christmas sermon at church, children sing Christmas carols and make a play of the Nativity. Nativity is the birth of Jesus as it was described in the Bible and can be seen in the drawing which I made below. The tradition of exchanging gifts originates from the three wise men who came to worship the newborn baby Jesus by giving him presents (gold, olibanum and myrrh). Jesus was believed to be ‘the king of the Jews’ who will bring salvation.

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During December most people stir up the spirit of Christmas by decorating their homes and listening to Christmas songs. Here’s one of my favourite songs:

Which are your favourite Christmas songs? Comment below and happy holidays! ^_^

Work in the UK

WP_20141019_011Today I will share some information about work in the UK so please feel free to comment and share any tips or experience you have had related to the topic. To find a job in the UK you need to be motivated and hard working. The minimal requirements to get hired are actually quite simple:

  1. Work permission, unless you are UK or EU citizen
  2. National insurance number 
  3. UK Bank account
  4. Disclosure and Barring Services (DBS) certificate which is basically a criminal record check and usually the fee for having one is covered by your employer
  5. English language certificate (e.g. IELTS, TOEFL, FCE, CAE etc.)
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In addition to the requirements mentioned above you need a CV, sometimes a motivational letter explaining why you want to do a specific job, and one or two references from previous employers if you have had previous work experience. Often you would have to pass an interview and sometimes employers give tests on interview days. I remember when I applied for a job in a big supermarket they were asking questions about the history of the supermarket, number of supermarkets in the UK and around Europe etc. That is why always expect the unexpected. Sometimes you might think that applying for a job in the local shop would be easy, however, they might give you a maths test on the interview day. If you are applying for a job that requires a degree then it is likely that the process might be a bit longer as there could be additional requirements. For example, if you have a degree from abroad in Pharmacy and you want to work as a Pharmacist in the UK then you need to register on the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) Register first. Some of you might need to get a working visa if you come from outside the EU. But don’t lose hope. It’s possible to get a job in the UK as long as you are determined to be successful and not give up.

Once you have passed through all the requirements, interviews, exams and you have got the job, you might wonder about the pay. Well, the minimal pay per hour can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/national-minimum-wage-rates

P.S. Today I had my first day working as a First Aider on the rugby pitch. I had to assist casualties with some minor injuries and make sure everyone is alright. The weather was very cold, however, the game was great and UEA women’s rugby team won the game. Congratulations UEA!

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First Aid

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Recently I had a First Aid training which I passed successfully. Hurray! Now I am officially an employee Events First Aider working for my university. My main responsibilities are to preserve life, prevent the situation from worsening and promote recovery of all casualties. Of course, such an opportunity comes with great responsibility and legal accountability. Anyway, there are four main steps in first aid:

Step 1: DANGER? Is it safe for you to provide first aid? If everything is safe then you can provide first aid, however, if there is any risk for your health then remember that safety is your number one priority. For example, if the casualty is bleeding profusely you must put gloves on, otherwise, you put yourself at risk.
Step 2: RESPONSE? Shout and gently tap the shoulders of the casualty. Are they conscious?
Step 3: BREATHING? If someone is talking to you then they are obviously breathing, however, if there is no response you should open the airway by tilting the head back and lifting the chin. Look for chest movements, feel for warm air on your cheek and listen for breathing sounds for 10 seconds.

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Step 4: PROBLEM? What’s the problem?
Responsive, Breathing -> Find out what the injury is and treat the casualty appropriately. For example, if they have a broken wrist you should tell them not to move it, put an ice pack on it, and elevate it in a sling until an ambulance arrives.
Unresponsive, Breathing -> Recovery position
Unresponsive, NOT breathing -> CPR (chest compressions), and call an ambulance (999 or 112). Closest hospital to the University of East Anglia is the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.

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A trainee nurse at hospital!

Have you ever heard of the saying ‘There is always a first time’? Well, you will hear it often when you are having your first clinical placement as a student.

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At the moment I’m having my so called ‘taster placement’ at a local hospital. This is the time when I am able to feed patients, give bed baths, administer drugs, make observations of vital signs, clean hospital equipment, communicate with patients and their family members. However, it was also my very first time to work 12 hour shifts, deal with patients who are aggressive, deal with stress, be spit at, shouted at, get used to all sorts of smells, see patients naked, and be on duty all day. I am glad I paid attention during all my lectures and did all my homework because the knowledge I gained from university boost my confidence to apply my skills in practice. Although, being a nurse is a challenging job, I absolutely love it because every day is different and you never get bored of it. Furthermore, seeing patients recover is very rewarding.

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It is important to point out that my mentor is a great example of a highly-skilled nurse who is also a kind and cheerful person. Her encouragement and support helped me expand my knowledge and gain new skills, for example, taking out a surgical drain bag, using a bladder scanner etc. She does everything to help me gain as much knowledge and experience as possible. In addition, she gives me quizzes and examines me to see how I progress. I feel lucky that I met her because she inspired me to give the best out of myself.

Here are my top tips for students going on their first clinical placement:

  1. Wear comfortable shoes
  2. Bring your lunch box and drink
  3. Don’t do anything if you don’t know how to do it
  4. Don’t be scared to do something if you know how to do it
  5. Take notes and reflect on your experience

Student Life @ UEA

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It has been more than a month since I started my Nursing degree. My parents and friends often ask me if I like it, if it is too difficult, if there are any problems or challenges, if I have made new friends etc. So I thought it would be nice to reflect on my experience as a student so far. So here are some bullet-points on different aspects:

• Nursing degree – The course is demanding, the study load is challenging and the responsibility is great. By the end of Module 1 I need to write at least 9100 words in total in the form of assignments and essays. In addition, we make presentations about patients with various diseases. To be honest, I love everything I learn and I find my course extremely interesting. However, sometimes deadlines and academic requirements make things a bit scarier than they actually are. Either way, I just deal with it. -.-“

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• Friends and social life – With such a great variety and diversity of people around you there is no way you will be lonely or bored. There are plenty of events, parties and social events to chose from and people to meet. I made friends with people from different nationalities and backgrounds which makes life so exciting. It is amazing how easy it is to make friends with people and enjoy even boring things like cooking, studying, shopping or cleaning. Going out or celebrating together is the best way to let the steam off. Movie nights, for example, are a great way to release stress and relax. 🐱

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• Finances – If you can’t cook for yourself then you’re in trouble. An average lunch costs 5 pounds so spending 15 pounds a day for food will easily make you go bankrupt. Some of my flatmates can’t cook and neither can I. That is why I’m learning how to cook. Another thing to consider is your accomodation costs. If you’re living on campus then sharing a twin room is the cheapest option. However, privacy and having your own bedroom is best in my opinion. Lastly, instead of calling a taxi or taking the bus it would be nice to buy yourself a bike so you could go wherever you want and keep fit for free. 😀

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• Relationships – If you have a boyfriend/girlfriend who lives in a different town/country then you could experience additional stress by missing him/her or even get depressed if you don’t get the chance to meet him/her often. Communication with your loved one is vital if you want to make your relationship work out well. Furthermore, being separated from your family might not be as great as you have thought it would be. The independence you gain brings responsibilities which you might struggle to face on your own. Stay in touch with your mom, dad and siblings. Remember that they miss you as well.

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What’s Nursing all about?

As a student nurse I need to study human anatomy and physiology (A&P). Now these are some serious subjects right there. The human being, however, is much more complex than what our textbooks teach us.

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Nursing is all about a holistic approach to care! ‘What is it exactly?’ you may ask. In the 20th century George Engel introduced the biopsychosocial model which is a holistic approach to care in treatment of patients in order to prevent the dehumanization of care. Nurses are not just dealing with symptoms, illnesses or diseases but with people. A&P can teach you where the heart is, how big it is, what type of cells it is composed of and what function it has, however, A&P will not teach you that the heart of a patient might be filled with stress, fear, anxiety, anger, hate, hopelessness, or sorrow. It is important to understand that nurses are to look at a patient as a person who has physical, psychological, mental, social and spiritual needs and a nurse’s job is to identify these needs and help the patient.

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A nurse which observes a patient holistically should trace all the way back to the initial reason why a patient is suffering from a certain symptom or illness. For example, long-term unemployment could lead to depression. Depression, which is a mental disorder, could lead to physical symptoms, such as: insomnia, fatigue, malnutrition or obesity. These symptoms could lead to a compromised immune system, which leads to a higher risk of infections and an untreated infection could lead to death. Some of you might say that this sounds ridiculous but it is often the little things that could lead to great harm. In March 2014 there was a man from Lancashire who died of a heart attack, due to a septic infection, all because he had the habit of biting his nails. But why was this man biting his nails in the first place? Guess! Yes, he suffered from depression and anxiety.

To sum up, a patient is a person who has certain needs. Having a holistic approach to the treatment of patients is the key to becoming a good nurse.