negativity in nursing school

  1. Am I the only one, or do others experience a high level of negativity among their fellow students? Talking smack about the professors (who are all professional and friendly, though they don't all teach the same way), talking smack about the administration of our small college, talking smack about each other...not to mention being super nosy about everyone's grades (which is nobody's business).

    Maybe my standards are different - I'm in my late 30s and come to nursing from a successful career in business, and I tend to view nursing school as a business proposition (I am here to conduct a transaction - I will pay $xxx in exchange for learning as much as possible about how to take care of people when they can't take care of themselves). But about 1/3 of my classmates are also in their 30s/40s/50s and many of them quite negative.

    I'm trying to find a positive in this, in learning new ways to cope with negative colleagues, but it is very frustrating. I want to tell them all to grow up and suck it up - if they think school is bad, how are they going to hack it in "the real world"?

    Is it just me? I know negativity is everywhere, but damn, there seems to be a high concentration of toxicity here...
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    About honey bell

    Joined: Sep '12; Posts: 9
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  3. by   krcs
    In my class there is no negativity. I think it varies. I talked to a friend who is in the same school as me but has different professors and the class dynamic for her is so different from my experience with my class. There are no outcasts in our class. It's a small class(Less than 20) but we all sit down and chat with each other. The teachers involve themselves with us too. They are our teachers but they are friendly and open to any questions so there aren't negative comments about them at all.

    In my friend's class there are cliques and overall seems to have a lot more negativity than my class. In the end I think it has more to do with the people in your class than nursing school itself!
  4. by   DawnJ
    I'm also in school after a business career and I also view this as a transaction whereby I'm paying my dollars for an education. Most of the class is in their early 30's, and there are the Negative Nellies. I don't see a direct correlation between age though. The 21 year old is great, the oldest students (of which I'm one) are also fine. I see the negative people in my class as the ones who feel intitled to things and when they don't get what they expect, they look everywhere but at themselves for a cause: the teacher is bad, doesn't like me, is unfair. The test material wasn't in the chapter, the wording was confusing, etc.

    As with many things in life, you get out what you put in. I'll be the first one complaining if I don't feel my educational quality is equal to the tuition I paid. But it isn't the teacher's responsibility to spoon feed. Students need to take responsibility for their learning and if something isn't understood, find a way to understand it: internet, colleagues, tutors, instructor's office time, etc.

    So, I agree that the negativity is there but I look at it as their problem and not mine. They are looking for justification regarding their performance and I just surround myself with the positive people in my cohort. After all, those are the ones I'm most likely going to be spending the majority of my nursing program with, since those who can't hack the curriculum will wash out sooner or later.
  5. by   serenidad2004
    When I went back to school for my RN it was a totally different dynamic than when I got my LPN.... I was in my mid 20's and most of the rest of my class was my age up to maybe 35. I honestly felt like I had gone back to middle school.
    I had no choice but to work full time while in school while the majority of my classmates either worked very part time or not at all. You would think they would have neen somewhat flexible when selecting their clinical times as they had no other obligations... yeah not so much.
    Everything was always a problem they always complained about the teacher the clinical site the nurses we worked with etc etc etc... I often thought it was no wonder they never had good learning experiences they decided it was all terrible before even starting.
    It is true that you get out what you put in... unfortunately those same negative attitudes dont stop with some people at graduation, it follows them to the work place.
  6. by   honey bell
    Ah! Thanks, folks, for helping me to realize that this isn't exclusive to me - though I agree it is their problem, not mine. The fact that they are so vocal makes it hard to remember that sometimes.

    And I think what compounds it is the fact we are all together most of the time; we split into groups for clinical, but we have all of our lectures together, so there isn't much respite from the toxicity. If we're at clinical, inevitably, someone brings up the test that we just took, etc., etc., etc. Argh!

    I think part of the problem is that I am powerless over this; I'm not anyone's boss, and I have no influence whatsoever. So that part, and coping with it, is MY problem! But I am often embarrassed to be lumped in with these people and their bad attitudes.