this is why people still think there's a nursing shortage!

  1. 0
    aarggghhh! more of a rant than anything else. my mother is a nurse (NP actually). growing up, the expectation was always made very clear that my brother and I were to go into healthcare, and that nothing else would be an acceptable career choice. (He's a successful sous chef, and my mother didn't talk to him for two years after she realized he wasn't ever going to medical school and is serious about doing what he enjoys).

    Now our younger brother is being pushed in the same direction - he's 15 and he has no interest or particular aptitude for nursing or healthcare. His talent and passion is languages -he's in 10th grade and is taking French and Russian at a local university after testing out of honors language classes at his school, and teaching ESL at a nonprofit center for immigrant services.

    Last night he mentioned to our parents that he was thinking about majoring in linguistics at college. My mother flipped out and started telling him that healthcare is the only profession you can count on, that he would be stupid to walk away from the chance to earn a ton of money and how there's such a need for nurses that he would be able to write his own ticket and get work easily in any specialty. All the myths were trotted out - big money, easy to find a job, make your own schedule, you can go right into the ER or any other popular specialty area right out of school, etc.

    This is at least one reason why people are going into nursing/healthcare with expectations that are not at all reality-based. Where are they hearing that there's big money, easy money, flexible scheduling, loads of cushy or high-profile jobs? Someone is telling these people to expect that, and sometimes it's not Yahoo! Answers giving them the wrong idea- but rather experienced, working nurses who should know better!

    tbh I really want to show him the AN forums so he can get a different perspective.
    Last edit by ceccia on Feb 10

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  2. 44 Comments...

  3. 9
    If your mother is an NP, I assume she has been in practice for quite some time. Bedside nursing is much different from being an NP, and for her to direct your brother into a profession that he neither desires, nor is suited for, is irresponsible on her part. Parents, however, have the tendency to see their dream for their children, especially if it involves "passing on the torch." Your best bet is to be an advocate for your brother and let him know that, regardless of your mother's information (which is most assuredly false), it takes a special individual to become a nurse, and if his passion lay elsewhere, he'd be better off applying it to something he loves.
    workingmama77, AOx1, silverbat, and 6 others like this.
  4. 0
    The fundamentals textbook states that there is a nursing shortage. This is what they are teaching current nursing students.
  5. 0
    Quote from lovenotwar14
    The fundamentals textbook states that there is a nursing shortage. This is what they are teaching current nursing students.
    I wonder what fundamentals text book they're using. Perhaps they should provide statewide data and not national data. I bet that'd detour a lot of these would-be-nurses from joining ADN programs just to secure employment.
  6. 3
    nynursey, i agree with you. our mother entered the profession during the first legit nursing shortage, and graduated as an NP just as the second shortage wave hit. She truly doesn't seem to get that the experiences of new grad nurses today are not going to be anything like hers.

    When I was job shadowing before nursing school, I had a lot of nurses tell me the same things. I'm a bit sensitive to criticism of the "you should have done your research before you went to nursing school" variety, because I honestly thought I HAD done my research. I thought that in addition to looking up the BLS forecasts and whatnot, talking to actual nurses in real life about the profession would give me the best idea of what it's like.

    i know some of my other posts may come off as overly negative about the profession- but really i have absolutely nothing against nursing as a profession. If someone has the interest, desire, aptitude, and temperament for it, AND has been given a realistic idea of what the profession is actually like, that's freaking awesome and that person should go for it.

    My problem is with people being pushed toward nursing when they are ill-suited for it and/or don't want to do it. tbh it makes me angry when people are encouraged to go into nursing based on lies and misinformation, i.e. it's easy! there's a shortage! it's recession-proof! it's just like Grey's Anatomy! no it's not any of those things.
    Last edit by ceccia on Feb 10
  7. 2
    It is true that working nurses may be unaware of the current situation, and I would never fault a student for "not doing their research". It is so-called trusted sources who are deliberately misleading people. Not by simple omission or even "spin". Those you may be able to excuse but what we have with the ANA, the AACN and others is a conscious, bought and paid for campaign of lies and scenarios they simply made up 3 or 4 years ago. Every one of those has either been disproved or is trending in that direction.

    I know I sound harsh, but what we have now is essentially a success story. The best minds in the world and lots of dollars have been poured into what was a real problem. It has taken several decades for them to come to fruition..but they have.

    Yay! No, I guess not. Counterintuitively, some stakeholders are more concerned about keeping the gravy train running in their direction than they are about real people victimized by their crazy reality- denying campaign.
    Not_A_Hat_Person and SHGR like this.
  8. 0
    Im not suggesting that your brother goes into healthcare for the $$$ but its by FAR FAR FAR the smartest way to go. Your mother is right (arent they always?)

    Ill mention that im only in my 20s

    I went to an expensive but very high profile school for undergrad. I majored in nursing (and I made a ton of friends who did the same) plus have tons of other close friends who went for physical therapy pharmacy OT etc.

    I also have a ton of friends who majored in things like teaching, liberal arts, math, communications, journalism etc.

    The ones who have healthcare degrees (and are all still in their 20s like me) are making 70-100k+ a year right now, with their student loans almost completely paid off or completely paid off. The ones who have the ******** garbage degrees (going to college for the sake of going to college) are the ones who have 6 figures in student loans and are doing absurd jobs that a highschool STUDENT should be doing. Making 7-12$ an hour (yes one of my friends who spent 6+ figures on a liberal arts degree from a near elite college is a full time dog sitter)

    Another does updates on the radio everynight plus gets his bosses coffee.

    This isnt a rant or post about how money is important, but if youre going to college (and dont have a full scholarship or rich uncle to pay your way through) odds are youre going to be spending quite a bit of money. So if your degree doesnt put you in a position to get a CAREER not a job, its a poor choice.

    As im still in my 20s I see it with all my friends. A lot of people are in REALLY REALLY ****** situations because they have useless degrees and this is an incredibly tough economy right now. A college degree isnt anything special anymore, everyone has one. So if yours isnt meaningful, the road ahead is going to be MUCH MUCH MUCH more difficult.

    Ill also add that I dual majored and have a business degree as well. I consider the business degree a gray area. They are useful (as a matter of fact i think most healthcare workers should get a dual degree down the road in business) but they also dont do a ton to get you a job.

    As far as college degrees go id by far have to recommend

    1) health


    WAYYYY down below
    2) business
    And quite a bit below everything else.

    Its hard to know what you want to do the rest of your life at 16-17, and make a decision like what you want to college to college for and spend a TON of money on.

    But I do know that nobody wants to be broke, so getting a degree that wont help you get a career is a pretty horrible decision.

    Im with your mom on this one, a linguistics degree probably not the wisest move.

    If hes passionate about languages some sort of healthcare/social work with a minor in spanish could take him a long way, and acutally put food on the table
  9. 10
    I don't know anything about what the job market is like for a linguistic major, but if he's not interested in healthcare, why waste the time, energy, & money?
  10. 5
    Quote from mhy12784
    Im not suggesting that your brother goes into healthcare for the $$$ but its by FAR FAR FAR the smartest way to go. Your mother is right (arent they always?)

    Ill mention that im only in my 20s

    I went to an expensive but very high profile school for undergrad. I majored in nursing (and I made a ton of friends who did the same) plus have tons of other close friends who went for physical therapy pharmacy OT etc.

    I also have a ton of friends who majored in things like teaching, liberal arts, math, communications, journalism etc.

    The ones who have healthcare degrees (and are all still in their 20s like me) are making 70-100k+ a year right now, with their student loans almost completely paid off or completely paid off. The ones who have the ******** garbage degrees (going to college for the sake of going to college) are the ones who have 6 figures in student loans and are doing absurd jobs that a highschool STUDENT should be doing. Making 7-12$ an hour (yes one of my friends who spent 6+ figures on a liberal arts degree from a near elite college is a full time dog sitter)

    Another does updates on the radio everynight plus gets his bosses coffee.

    This isnt a rant or post about how money is important, but if youre going to college (and dont have a full scholarship or rich uncle to pay your way through) odds are youre going to be spending quite a bit of money. So if your degree doesnt put you in a position to get a CAREER not a job, its a poor choice.

    As im still in my 20s I see it with all my friends. A lot of people are in REALLY REALLY ****** situations because they have useless degrees and this is an incredibly tough economy right now. A college degree isnt anything special anymore, everyone has one. So if yours isnt meaningful, the road ahead is going to be MUCH MUCH MUCH more difficult.

    Ill also add that I dual majored and have a business degree as well. I consider the business degree a gray area. They are useful (as a matter of fact i think most healthcare workers should get a dual degree down the road in business) but they also dont do a ton to get you a job.

    As far as college degrees go id by far have to recommend

    1) health


    WAYYYY down below
    2) business
    And quite a bit below everything else.

    Its hard to know what you want to do the rest of your life at 16-17, and make a decision like what you want to college to college for and spend a TON of money on.

    But I do know that nobody wants to be broke, so getting a degree that wont help you get a career is a pretty horrible decision.

    Im with your mom on this one, a linguistics degree probably not the wisest move.

    If hes passionate about languages some sort of healthcare/social work with a minor in spanish could take him a long way, and acutally put food on the table
    I'd be careful generalizing that nurses earn $70,000 to $100,000 as though that's normal. Sure, some areas of the country with high costs of living may pay this but in my neck of the woods, a new grad (AN or BSN) can expect to make under $37,000. I have seen postings where new grads make more than this is parts of the country that certainly have lower COL than one finds here. Sorry just had to put that out there.
  11. 0
    Quote from Nurse Leigh
    I'd be careful generalizing that nurses earn $70,000 to $100,000 as though that's normal. Sure, some areas of the country with high costs of living may pay this but in my neck of the woods, a new grad (AN or BSN) can expect to make under $37,000. I have seen postings where new grads make more than this is parts of the country that certainly have lower COL than one finds here. Sorry just had to put that out there.
    Oh I wasnt generalizing all nurses.

    I was referring specifically to my friends that I went to college with that were healthcare majors (mostly nurses, but some physical therapist/OT, pharm, and other medical degrees)

    However I live in NY and went to school in both NY/CT. So all of the people I know from school work in NY/NJ/CT

    The lowest paying job of any of my friends with healthcare degrees (in this area) is 67,500 (for days) as a new grad nurse with 0 experience plus a state pension and 72.5 for that same position with nights.

    Again im not saying go into the medical field for money, but rather suggesting that anyone who plans on investing years of their life + significant money on a college degree would be incredibly foolish to not look into the chances of getting a return on that investment.


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