New grad, first week off orientation and assigned at student nurse

  1. How does your facility handle this? I was kind of shocked when I saw I had a student with me my first week off orientation. I feel so fresh and new myself and still have not even done a variety of skills myself (hang blood and insulin drip comes to mind). I love teaching others but really felt uneasy having a student with me so early on. I'm not in my groove yet at all and am still figuring out how to hold my own. Is this common to be assigned a student so early on as a new grad? I felt very tense and nervous thinking I might make a mistake.

    Does your facility take these things into consideration? Do they ask RNs if they want a student nurse, or just assign them? Just curious what the norm is here.
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    About aem31

    Joined: Apr '10; Posts: 71; Likes: 70


  3. by   MJB2010
    That is completely inappropriate for both of you. You need time to develop your own routine and skills and get comfortable as a nurse and with your skills. Students should go with someone who has at least a year or two under their belt as long as that person is kind and patient enough to teach. It is unfair for you and the student to be paired up when you are fresh off orientation. I would speak up. Whoever made that decision clearly was not thinking, AT ALL. I have to really question the common sense of who did that to you.
  4. by   RNewbie
    At my old facility the nursing instructors usually pick the pts, so we didnt have control over that. We had students when I first got out of orientation. I think it's fine as long as the instructor does everything with them. As a new nurse I was comfortable with students. My only issue was sometimes trying to manage my time along with helping the student. Students always have lots of questions, I found myself telling them I didn't know the answers to a lot of them. Now if you are talking about a senior nurse preceptorship I can absolutely understand, no way I could have done that right out of orientation.
  5. by   Jessy_RN
    Inappropritate, and can lead to higher probability of errors in my opinion. You still haven't found your way around yourself, much less guide a student.

    Yes, you can 'wing' it but it is not fair for you, the student who is probably paying a lot to be there, and the patients. You have the right to politely decline.

    Everywhere I have worked, we are asked if so and so may be with us, and the nurse has usually at least a yr of training.

    If you are writing this post it is because you are uncomfortable. Maybe someone else isn't, but I would trust my instinct.

    Good luck
  6. by   not.done.yet
    I have had the same problem. They pick the patients the afternoon before, when the next day nurses don't even have assignments yet. I have wound up with a student and honestly it frustrated me to no end. I have only been a nurse for 8 months. I have a hard enough time keeping myself organized without throwing a bunch of questions and chit chat and an extra pair of eager hands that have to wait for their instructor into the mix. Not the student's fault, but I feel guilty to tell my management I don't want a student (who will then promptly yank the student off my patients) when the student spent all night coming up with their paperwork etc. I was that student not that long ago. I just seems like a bit of a broken system. No way should I have a student right now.
  7. by   PediLove2147
    I had students right off orientation too but didn't do anything with them. They just had my patient, the instructor did everything. I occasionally (if I felt comfortable) allowed them to be with me during a procedure.

    I agree with it not being a senior precepting student, that is not safe since you yourself are not an experienced enough nurse.
  8. by   aem31
    Thanks for the feedback. I really want to be involved with students. I love teaching, just feel not ready at this point. I guess my hospital expects us to take them no matter what. Probably the clinical instructor assigns the patient to the student the night before and since our patient assignments aren't made until about an hour before our shift there isn't a good way to make sure unexperienced nurses don't get a student. I suppose I'll just do the best I can.
  9. by   hiddencatRN
    I had students fresh off orientation and didn't mind, but in the ED they were just there to observe and had a really limited scope. I liked sharing what I knew with them. I think I'd have felt different if the expectations were different, but basically all I was doing was letting them see what the ED is like.
  10. by   aem31
    Quote from hiddencatRN
    I had students fresh off orientation and didn't mind, but in the ED they were just there to observe and had a really limited scope. I liked sharing what I knew with them. I think I'd have felt different if the expectations were different, but basically all I was doing was letting them see what the ED is like.
    These students go to a different school than I did so I'm not sure what they know yet and what they can do. Whenever I've asked what they can do they act like a deer in headlights. I had a patient with some adventitious lung sounds and offered to let my student listen. he didn't have a stethoscope with him.
  11. by   anotherone
    The instructors come early or day before and pick the patients. The assignemnts already have TOO MUCH factored in let alone who is knew and who has students. When doing the assignment that is RARELY looked at it. Which is why sometimes one nurse has 4 students and others have 0.
  12. by   msn10
    OP - Its ridiculous.
  13. by   HippyDippyLPN
    When I was in LTC with 2 years exp under my belt I wouldnt take students. I didnt feel like I could juggle my 30 patients while teaching someone. It would be unfair to them as a student and to me as well. I got flack for it but didnt care. Even the seasoned nurses didnt want the students just because we didnt have the time to pee let alone explain things to someone else.
  14. by   AZMOMO2
    Most times the students don't want a lot of explanations for everything that you are doing. They really want to observe. If there is anything interesting going on, let them in on it, or let them observe. You do not have to spend your entire shift babysitting them and being the clinical instructor, they have one for that. If they have one of your patients and need to pass the meds or do the treatments, then that is what the clinical instructor is for, hand over the info and just make sure they report off to you. Heck I would have loved to have students to help me with my 30 patients and do some of there dressings and treatments for me.

    As an LPN who has had students with me, I say watch closely, when I get a second I can explain anything you want. Write down questions you have so it'll be easier. If there is down time I show them things in more detail. I also make sure their is instructors are here to give the meds and do the treatments with them. I am pretty good with time management sostudent or new employee, I have had to train them both and either way, the work gets done.

    As an RN student now, and having to go back into student mode, from being "the nurse" I can tell you I appreciate being able to watch and I don't expect you to teach me everything the whole time. I know when to stay out of the way, or when to dig in and get my hands dirty.

    But maybe that is just the difference in actually having worked as the nurse and not ever having been a working nurse as a student.