Fanshawe Strike 7

Protesters pace back and forth in front of a Fanshawe College entrance during Monday's protests, Oct. 16, 2017.

My name is Kassidy McMullin, I’m a second-year nursing student in the Western-Fanshawe BScN, and half of my faculty members are on strike.

For my peers and me, this means that all of our Fanshawe classes are cancelled, our Fanshawe professors are locked out of the online teaching portal and we are barred from going to our community placements.

I myself am in a unique position in that I am the vice president collaborative liaison for the Western-Fanshawe's Nursing Students’ Association. My role in the association is to ensure equity across both campuses, and this strike has most definitely challenged that.

Unfortunately, in the duration of the strike, there is not much we are able to do, but we have explored all of our options and given the students all the information and assistance that we possibly can. We are eager for the opportunity to assist the Fanshawe site nursing students upon termination of the strike.

For the time being, I am keeping myself occupied with all of my schoolwork. I anticipate our return to the classroom to be hectic and stressful, so I am working on getting as much done as I possibly can.

As a student in my position, I have received a fair amount of concerns from the students about what is expected of them during the strike, what this means for their semester, and whether they will be able to reclaim the knowledge that they missed out on.

Unfortunately, I have no concrete answers to any of these questions; in fact, no one does. I think that is the most unsettling concept about the strike: seeing the journey to our careers and future being put on hold by uncontrollable circumstances.

While nerves are running high at this time, I have managed to take a step back from this situation and realize that, in all honesty, I have no control in this. Becoming stressed myself is unproductive and only detrimental to my well-being. I’ve come to realize that life comes with many curveballs, and sometimes all I can do is grin, bear it and swing.

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