full disclosure - I am a non-academic nurse educator employed by a very large health care system... and older than dirt.
Academic nursing education is in a world of hurt right now... 1) Salaries are insultingly low; 2) Experienced nurse educators are reaching retirement age at a rapid clip with no qualified replacements in sight; 3) Desperate schools
are hiring any MSNs with a pulse. 4) Nursing programs
are increasingly cash-strapped and cannot provide adequate training for new instructors 5) Burnout is high & talented educators leave for greener pastures when reality sets in (my nurse educators can earn ~ 2X the salary of their academic colleagues). Yep, the old descending spiral & students are the ones that are hurt the most.
I don't know why the myth of "everyone can teach" is so prevalent in healthcare. It simply isn't so. Education is a whole 'nother discipline - with a huge body of research to support evidence-based principles and practice. But there are very few 'nurse educators' with any exposure to it. It's our fault. My MSN (focus on education) didn't really incorporate even the most basic fundamentals of educational theory/practice... unless they were 'inside the nursing fence'. With predictable results. If I hadn't been raised in a family of educators (El-Hi & higher ed), I would have been clueless also. So - I went for an EdD because there was (is?) really no terminal nursing degree that focused on education..no acknowledgement of education as an established discipline. Very sad.
I am lucky enough to have a position of influence in my organization, so we have a carefully structured career track for nurse educators. These positions require an MSN - with formal coursework in the discipline (principles and practice) of education. All newbie educators are provided with a copy of McKeachie's Teaching Tips: Strategies, Research, and Theory for College & University Teachers.
- this is our basic guidebook because it covers everything! It's a wonderful resource for adult education in any venue... not expensive. It's in its umpteenth edition... I first came across it as a TA in grad school. (I have no financial interest in this book).
So - when you come across a wonderful instructor.... Let her/him know how much you value them. This may not be sufficient to keep them in the job, but it may make a difference.