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How COVID-19 Changed The Trajectory Of Some NAU Nursing Students

By Kathy Ritchie
Published: Monday, April 26, 2021 - 8:54am
Updated: Monday, April 26, 2021 - 9:00am

Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff
Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff.

A year ago, nursing faculty at Northern Arizona University had to hustle to get students clinical placements — a requirement of the nursing program. But COVID-19 had shut everything down. So, the students started working with older adults over the phone to complete the program.

Guy Lamunyon is an adjunct faculty member with NAU’s nursing department who focuses on psychiatric nursing. 

"But COVID stood the world of nursing education on its head. We had no experience." he said. "We always had clinical placements, having our clinical placements jerked out from under us was very new and we had to be very creative and come up with alternatives."

So, he contacted the Verde Valley Caregivers Coalition. They needed help conducting a survey on patient wellness and readiness for telemedicine among their homebound seniors.

Lamunyon said the experience exposed his students to working with the older population, while counting as a form of talk therapy. 

Coronavirus Education Aging