1. Love, Gayla

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The COVID-19 pandemic has continued to challenge nurse educators to make sure graduates are prepared for practice. The uncertainty of the coronavirus can create fear for nurse educators and students in the patient care setting. To prepare for the educator role on the frontline, nurses can meditate on Psalm 46:1: "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble" (NIV). There is no need to be fearful; 2 Timothy 1:7 assures us, "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline" (NIV). As educators on the frontline, we can demonstrate to students and colleagues how to use our knowledge and skills to effectively care for others during challenging times.

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"Be prepared and don't panic" is the motto nurse Crystal Davis Campbell (2021) lived out in the height of the pandemic. As educators, we should gain knowledge of hazards, such as transmission of new infectious diseases, and how to protect ourselves and our students. God promises "Whoever listens to me will live in safety and be at ease, without fear of harm" (Proverbs 1:33, NIV). Listening to God and using factual knowledge defuses fear of the unknown that can steal one's joy in serving and leading.



The educator should confidently lead from the frontline, teaching students to navigate safe patient care while caring for themselves. The educator must show "integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us" (Titus 2:7, NIV). With a contextual understanding of the clinical learning environment, educators can confidently guide and train students in sound clinical judgment. Experienced educators can assist students in problem solving and generate a hypothesis to determine an appropriate course of action in patient care (Rodger, 2019).


Providing guidance and instruction for students has become more of a challenge since the COVID-19 pandemic. Students may be anxious, afraid, or hesitant when entering a room of a COVID-19 patient. The educator needs to purposefully lead. The educator should demonstrate how PPE should be donned and doffed and how to complete an assessment on a complex patient. Ensure the student recognizes and demonstrates the act of touch, communication, and caring. The apostle Peter encourages us to "be shepherds of God's flock that is under your care, watching over them-not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; ... eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock" (1 Peter 5:2, NIV). The educator has opportunity to graciously mentor students as they build confidence in their skills.



The influx of constant information through electronic devices can be overwhelming, increasing anxiety and a sense of hopelessness. Make it a point to turn off all electronic devices when you meet God in prayer. Encourage your students to disconnect and to practice methods of self-care, as appropriate, including prayer, meditation, and moments of quiet. Paul writes in 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18, "Pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus" (NIV). As you disconnect and rejuvenate yourself, you will have more grace and strength to pour out to your students.



Our faith must encourage us to stand firm on God's Word. "LORD, be gracious to us; we long for you. Be our strength every morning, our salvation in time of distress" (Isaiah 33:2, NIV) is a powerful encouragement. God is faithful and never wavers. We can be certain he will always have our backs, especially in times of difficulty. Seek him in prayer any time of day or night. Now is the time when educators can teach real world nursing care without fear to the next generation of nurses.


Rodger K. (2019). Learning to think like a clinical teacher. Teaching and Learning in Nursing, 14(1), 1-6.[Context Link]


Spader C. (2021, March 8). Nurse heroes of the pandemic. American Nurse Journal.