The Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) Certification Program promotes mentorship as a method to enhance the certification process for Registered Nurses who are preparing to write certification exams in their selected specialty and/or are preparing for certification renewal.
Diane Longmuir didn’t pass the first time she wrote the Nephrology certification exam. A front-line registered nurse working in remote northern Ontario, Diane had no study group, tutoring or classes to help her, so she studied on her own while taking online courses.
Discouraged but determined to succeed, Diane turned to CNA’s mentorship program where she was matched with Rick Luscombe, a veteran mentor also working in nephrology. They corresponded only by e-mail, and under his mentorship, Diane passed the exam in April 2008. She wanted to thank Rick in person and surprised him at a Quebec City conference for nephrology nurses and technologists, where he was presenting.
Diane wants nurses to know you don’t have to be a new or young nurse to get certified. “I am in my 50s, live and work in a rural, secluded area in a small five-chair dialysis unit and I was able to follow Rick’s recommendations and style of studying successfully. Now that I’m certified, I feel more confident and better able to answer patients’ questions.”
Her family is proud of her achievement, too. “It showed them that anyone can overcome a difficult obstacle if they are motivated – and that there’s no shame in asking for help.”
She also likes to think of new opportunities for nurses who obtain certification in her specialty, such as working on a dialysis cruise ship, relocating to a new city, setting up clinics in other countries, or working with Doctors without Borders. Asked if she would consider joining CNA’s mentorship program, or setting up a similar program at her hospital, Diane responded with an enthusiastic, “Absolutely!”
The CNA Mentorship Program has over 90 nurse mentors who volunteer their time to provide support and assistance to certification candidates. Nurse mentors hold current CNA certification and have a minimum of three years experience in their chosen specialty or area of nursing practice.
“[Rick told me to] . . . take small sections at a time, take the mini tests – and most importantly, pace myself and take breaks.” “Now that I’m certified, I feel more confident and better able to answer patients’ questions.”
“It was her dedication and hard work that made the difference. Diane’s success makes being a mentor worthwhile.”
Create your own poster
Use these Microsoft Word files to create your own CNA certification poster. Add your own images, advertise certification details or study group information, and more! There are two sizes available – tabloid and legal.
Click here for detailed information on how to manipulate the poster.
Share with your colleagues
E-mail us a copy of your poster! We will include it in our collection, and share it with your colleagues across Canada.
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