Rules for Nursing School - page 7

Following on from the other "Rules" Threads: 1. Turn off your mobile phone, if it absolutely must be on, let the lecturer know and keep it on the lowest possible volume or on silent (it is a rule at... Read More

  1. by   firstyearstudent
    Quote from amyk_ncsu
    Please do not sit at the front of the class and nod at everything the instructor says in agreement. Not only is it distracting to everyone behind you, you look like a kiss-ass/know-it-all in the process.
    Don't knocck the nodders! (The story tellers -- "I have a Schizophrenic aunt with MS and she's allergic to penicillin..." -- go ahead and knock.) Nodding is totally appropriate in any class. Pretending you don't care so you can look cool to classmates and not like a kiss-ass is not appropriate.

    They are actually teaching inner city kids to look at their instructor and nod in some charter schools. It keeps them focused and improves their grades.

    I'm all for nodding. Nod away!!!!
    Last edit by firstyearstudent on May 5, '07
  2. by   allthingsbright
    Quote from amyk_ncsu
    Please do not sit at the front of the class and nod at everything the instructor says in agreement. Not only is it distracting to everyone behind you, you look like a kiss-ass/know-it-all in the process.

    I nod all the time. Guess I am a kiss-ass. Oh well. I've got some good grades, tho'!
  3. by   caroladybelle
    Quote from pfitz1079
    If annoying people understood that they were annoying, they probably would choose not to do be so.

    Here's a hypothetical:

    Two years from now you're out of school and working as an honest-to-god RN. Your unit is understaffed (the norm), it's three AM (because all the bad stuff happens at three AM), and your patient is making a mad dash for the Pearly Gates. Your cell phone rings and its hubby with a situation he can't handle. Every patient on the unit is sick, and no staff can be spared.

    Decision time.

    My point is, this job will require sacrifices. Most of them we make ourselves, but some are made by those close to us. If you can't learn to make those in the classroom, you'll find it that much harder in practice.

    Nursing school is about care plans, exams, clinicals, and tough (often draconian) rules. It's also about becoming part of a profession that sometimes takes more than it gives. If you, and your family, can't handle that, then the time to decide that is now, not 3 AM.
    Alright, first I do not blame the individual that truly has a once in a lifetime emergency who carries a cell phone. I can understand where they come from.

    I can sympathise with those that take care of family members with special needs.

    But.

    I went to school during the time when there were NO cell phones. And you know what, I kept all who needed to know apprised of how to get a hold of me. Yes, they had to go through my instructor or a nurse manager to do so, but the essential messages got through.

    By the same token, those that had repeated problems or less essential issues, got their messages. But they also had an instructor/director that when there were repeated long term issues, sat them down and gave them the "come to reality" talk.

    This included the, "if you have such a traumatic home life/difficulties at home, you need to choose your profession and specialty carefully" talk.

    Because whether SAH likes it or not, this quoted situation posted happens at least daily to this Onco girl.

    IT IS NOT UNLIKELY. IT IS NOT IMPROBABLE. IT IS FACT!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OFTEN ON A DAILY OR EVEN HOURLY BASIS.

    And, unfortunately, if you do have a spouse that cannot handle issues at the home, unfair and as traumatic as they are, you need to work in a situation in which you can drop everything to help on a regular basis. And the vast amount of nursing positions out there DO NOT HAVE THIS LUXURY.

    You are on on an oncology floor in an inner city hospital. You have 3 nurses and two techs for 34 patients (actual situation, actual teaching hospital - ranked reasonably well in US News and World Report). Some of these patients were getting blood, chemo, several were paras/quads, most on lots of IV narcs, at least one recent halo brace, and some in DTs.

    One night, our nurse w/traumatic family issues gets her regular phone call and does her, "I absolutely have to leave, NOW" that occurs at least 1 shift out of every 9-12 that she comes to work. Leaving TWO nurses and two techs for the 34. This night before she leaves, my fresh postop perfs, there are no ICU beds available and gets scoped on the floor, with no sedation, the wound cauterized. Resident insists problem solved, I insist no it isn't, patient continues to bleed and drop pressure.

    There are no nurse available to come in, nor could I call them. It has to do with a shortage of nurses willing to work the floors. And these issues make it worse.

    There aren't a bunch of nurses standing around, waiting with baited breath, to pick and run to the hospital, at 0300 in the morning for a few hours work, because there are regular family emergencies. Sorry, but not a lot of nurses are signing up for that kind of work. Nor do DONs have a few nurses each shift just waiting in the wings. And managers do not have the luxury of always staffing extra when so-and-so works, because s/he often gets caught up in "home issues" and has to leave.

    After about the third or fourth time, someone HAS TO return a phone call or HAS to leave abruptly, there is going to a problem. Especially when a patient is harmed as a result.

    Yes, one's family is a priority. But so is EVERY PATIENT in your care.

    Choose your specialty wisely. You may not make as much money, but your patients will be safer.
  4. by   Cherish
    Quote from caroladybelle
    Alright, first I do not blame the individual that truly has a once in a lifetime emergency who carries a cell phone. I can understand where they come from.

    I can sympathise with those that take care of family members with special needs.

    But.

    I went to school during the time when there were NO cell phones. And you know what, I kept all who needed to know apprised of how to get a hold of me. Yes, they had to go through my instructor or a nurse manager to do so, but the essential messages got through.

    By the same token, those that had repeated problems or less essential issues, got their messages. But they also had an instructor/director that when there were repeated long term issues, sat them down and gave them the "come to reality" talk.

    This included the, "if you have such a traumatic home life/difficulties at home, you need to choose your profession and specialty carefully" talk.

    Because whether SAH likes it or not, this quoted situation posted happens at least daily to this Onco girl.

    IT IS NOT UNLIKELY. IT IS NOT IMPROBABLE. IT IS FACT!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OFTEN ON A DAILY OR EVEN HOURLY BASIS.

    And, unfortunately, if you do have a spouse that cannot handle issues at the home, unfair and as traumatic as they are, you need to work in a situation in which you can drop everything to help on a regular basis. And the vast amount of nursing positions out there DO NOT HAVE THIS LUXURY.

    You are on on an oncology floor in an inner city hospital. You have 3 nurses and two techs for 34 patients (actual situation, actual teaching hospital - ranked reasonably well in US News and World Report). Some of these patients were getting blood, chemo, several were paras/quads, most on lots of IV narcs, at least one recent halo brace, and some in DTs.

    One night, our nurse w/traumatic family issues gets her regular phone call and does her, "I absolutely have to leave, NOW" that occurs at least 1 shift out of every 9-12 that she comes to work. Leaving TWO nurses and two techs for the 34. This night before she leaves, my fresh postop perfs, there are no ICU beds available and gets scoped on the floor, with no sedation, the wound cauterized. Resident insists problem solved, I insist no it isn't, patient continues to bleed and drop pressure.

    There are no nurse available to come in, nor could I call them. It has to do with a shortage of nurses willing to work the floors. And these issues make it worse.

    There aren't a bunch of nurses standing around, waiting with baited breath, to pick and run to the hospital, at 0300 in the morning for a few hours work, because there are regular family emergencies. Sorry, but not a lot of nurses are signing up for that kind of work. Nor do DONs have a few nurses each shift just waiting in the wings. And managers do not have the luxury of always staffing extra when so-and-so works, because s/he often gets caught up in "home issues" and has to leave.

    After about the third or fourth time, someone HAS TO return a phone call or HAS to leave abruptly, there is going to a problem. Especially when a patient is harmed as a result.

    Yes, one's family is a priority. But so is EVERY PATIENT in your care.

    Choose your specialty wisely. You may not make as much money, but your patients will be safer.

    Wow that sounds awful. I think someone who has a situation like this should work in HMO or in Pharmaceuticals. That way a patient will not be hurt and the team morale will not go lower than it actually may be. There are jobs that nurses can go to that are more like 9-5 jobs. I feel for people that have family situations but they are also responsible to their jobs and their patients and if they can't do that for no fault of their own there are other nursing jobs out there. Not everyone needs to work in the hospital setting.
  5. by   amyk_ncsu
    I wasn't trying to offend anyone with my comment on the nodding thing. Everyone nods occasionally... even me. And I certainly dont try to look "cool" by acting uninterested, thats rediculous. I was more referring to the constant nodders. The ones who nod when your instructor tells you to put away all your notes and get your pencil out for a test. Thats a bit excessive really.
  6. by   IrishIzCPNP
    Quote from caroladybelle
    Alright, first I do not blame the individual that truly has a once in a lifetime emergency who carries a cell phone. I can understand where they come from.

    I can sympathise with those that take care of family members with special needs.

    But.

    I went to school during the time when there were NO cell phones. And you know what, I kept all who needed to know apprised of how to get a hold of me. Yes, they had to go through my instructor or a nurse manager to do so, but the essential messages got through.

    By the same token, those that had repeated problems or less essential issues, got their messages. But they also had an instructor/director that when there were repeated long term issues, sat them down and gave them the "come to reality" talk.

    This included the, "if you have such a traumatic home life/difficulties at home, you need to choose your profession and specialty carefully" talk.

    Because whether SAH likes it or not, this quoted situation posted happens at least daily to this Onco girl.

    IT IS NOT UNLIKELY. IT IS NOT IMPROBABLE. IT IS FACT!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OFTEN ON A DAILY OR EVEN HOURLY BASIS.

    And, unfortunately, if you do have a spouse that cannot handle issues at the home, unfair and as traumatic as they are, you need to work in a situation in which you can drop everything to help on a regular basis. And the vast amount of nursing positions out there DO NOT HAVE THIS LUXURY.

    Yes, one's family is a priority. But so is EVERY PATIENT in your care.

    Choose your specialty wisely. You may not make as much money, but your patients will be safer.

    First off...cells phones now do exist. So people carry them and there's no need to bother a bunch of people to a message to you.

    The above situation that the previous poster created...it's pretty far fetched. I'm not a child who just got out of high school. I've been in the field. I've worked. I know the realities of life. So I don't need to be lectured on it. That story is far fetched in my life. Maybe you work with some real idiots...I don't know but that is a far fetched story.

    There is no job out there that really allows you to drop everything. The reality of it is that things don't come up often but when they do I need to be able to address them. To assume that just because you work with people who are not responsible means that the rest of us aren't responsible is just insane. There is no reason that I would need to reconsider my career.

    Stop assuming that just because I said my family is a priority that I would walk away from a situation that needs attention. Stop assuming that people are not responsible. You may work with people who are not responsible but those are just the people you work with.

    And again...that "situation" is not reality. It is far fetched. You are working with somebody who more then likely is just that kind of person. She doesn't have those situations she creates them. So to assume that because you have a person that creates reasons to leave means that those with children at home or relatives with special needs at home will run off too is a vast assumption and generalization.

    I'm glad you are so committed to your career. I have every intention of being committed to mine as well. My family will always be my top priority. I am a mother first as every mother should always be.

    Interesting tid bit...I have NEVER missed a day of class or clinicals and my children have been sick. I do have my priorities straight.
  7. by   caroladybelle
    Quote from SAHStudent
    First off...cells phones now do exist. So people carry them and there's no need to bother a bunch of people to a message to you.

    The above situation that the previous poster created...it's pretty far fetched. I'm not a child who just got out of high school. I've been in the field. I've worked. I know the realities of life. So I don't need to be lectured on it. That story is far fetched in my life. Maybe you work with some real idiots...I don't know but that is a far fetched story.

    Stop assuming that just because I said my family is a priority that I would walk away from a situation that needs attention. Stop assuming that people are not responsible. You may work with people who are not responsible but those are just the people you work with.

    And again...that "situation" is not reality. It is far fetched. You are working with somebody who more then likely is just that kind of person. She doesn't have those situations she creates them. So to assume that because you have a person that creates reasons to leave means that those with children at home or relatives with special needs at home will run off too is a vast assumption and generalization.
    Sorry, as someone who has worked as a traveler, as management, as staff and has 15 years experience in the nursing field, and sterling references from 3 of the top 15 hospitals in the nation. One of the facilities, is consistantly listed as the top hospital in the nation. I can assure you that these situations:

    - ARE NOT FARFETCHED.
    - ARE NOT THAT UNUSUAL.

    And many of those nurses (that you, not I, label as not responsible) make the exact same arguments that you do. They have many of the same issues with family and loved ones.

    Again, I have not put down what you do. One has to do what one believes to be right in ones heart. There is no need to put one's family second. BUT YOU DO OWE IT TO YOUR PATIENT'S AND YOUR FAMILY!!!!!!!!!! if you become a nurse to choose where you work/your specialty wisely, to accomodate those beliefs.

    And please don't disregard our well meant advice as a putdown of you or your beliefs. Unlike you, we have had to actually work with patients, had their lives depend on our care, and dealt with well meaning coworkers w/family conflict, that have endangered that pt care.

    We know that these situations happen, because we have repeatedly seen them happen, and had to deal with the aftermath.

    Please do not label as "farfetched" what some of us encounter as a regular issue. What Pfitz described in the post that you label as "farfetched" is work as a regular matter of course in most facilities, good and bad. Even in the best of them.
  8. by   caroladybelle
    As far rules for Nursing School:

    Be nice to your classmates, even the ones that you do not like. What you do will come back to you eventially.

    Do not spread falsehoods about your classmates especially to potential employers. There is a special place in hell for those that damage another SN's reputation in the workplace. Unless you know something is completely true (you actually saw it happen) do not repeat gossip at all. I know of several SNs that had good job prospects ruined by classmates that spread false stories about them.

    Choose your specialty wisely. Research the prospects well before making a choice. I continue to be amazed at GNs that finish school, move to a new area....and then complain about the job opportunities available/or lack off, and pay scales of the new area. You should have checked that out beforehand. If you move to sunny Florida, and review anything about the area, you should come here expecting the pay to be low, and substantially fewer maternity/peds/L&D positions available. If you believe that blood transfusions are sinful and refuse to do them, it might behoove you to work in a bloodless center or avoid onco/ortho units. If you want set hours, work in a clinic note a hospital, or in the endo unit. Don't choose something and then gripe everyone's ear off about having to fulfill the requirements of the job. You know that people get sick 24/7, and that there is a nursing shortage, and should expect to work within those issues.
    Last edit by caroladybelle on May 6, '07
  9. by   IrishIzCPNP
    Quote from caroladybelle
    And many of those nurses (that you, not I, label as not responsible) make the exact same arguments that you do. They have many of the same issues with family and loved ones.
    Again, I have not put down what you do. One has to do what one believes to be right in ones heart. There is no need to put one's family second. BUT YOU DO OWE IT TO YOUR PATIENT'S AND YOUR FAMILY!!!!!!!!!! if you become a nurse to choose where you work/your specialty wisely, to accomodate those beliefs.
    And please don't disregard our well meant advice as a putdown of you or your beliefs. Unlike you, we have had to actually work with patients, had their lives depend on our care, and dealt with well meaning coworkers w/family conflict, that have endangered that pt care.
    We know that these situations happen, because we have repeatedly seen them happen, and had to deal with the aftermath.
    Please do not label as "farfetched" what some of us encounter as a regular issue. What Pfitz described in the post that you label as "farfetched" is work as a regular matter of course in most facilities, good and bad. Even in the best of them.

    First, what I do...keep a cell phone in my pocket. Only once in geez...YEARS have I ever had to say...I need to go. I left only after things were cleared and covered and actually didn't go downstairs until my daughter was actually in the ER.

    So one of my issues here is being compared to people who just run off.

    Those stories are far fetched to me. I don't discredit your experience but I too have experience. I have people in my life with more experience then you. They know about this post and they have said...yeah not something to worry about. I don't care what other people do. So if you are using these as example as others...I don't care about other people. Yes I might get stuck because of what they do but I'm not going to change carrying my phone because somebody else is not responsible.

    I don't see well meant advice coming because I've said time and time again...it doesn't apply to me. Family is first and work is second. This isn't because my daughter has a feeding tube. I could have the healthiest kids on the block and that is still the priority.

    So is description of the situation is far fetched as it relates to me. He was trying to paint me as some horrible person because I have a cell phone in my pocket, because my family comes first...I am the average normal person and like I said his situation has no regards to me because I am responsible whether he would like to believe it or not.

    So while some feel they are given advice I'm trying to point out that while it's lovely...I don't need the advice because I have common sense and I am responsible.
  10. by   firstyearstudent
    Quote from caroladybelle
    Sorry, as someone who has worked as a traveler, as management, as staff and has 15 years experience in the nursing field, and sterling references from 3 of the top 15 hospitals in the nation. One of the facilities, is consistantly listed as the top hospital in the nation. I can assure you that these situations:

    - ARE NOT FARFETCHED.
    - ARE NOT THAT UNUSUAL.

    And many of those nurses (that you, not I, label as not responsible) make the exact same arguments that you do. They have many of the same issues with family and loved ones.

    Again, I have not put down what you do. One has to do what one believes to be right in ones heart. There is no need to put one's family second. BUT YOU DO OWE IT TO YOUR PATIENT'S AND YOUR FAMILY!!!!!!!!!! if you become a nurse to choose where you work/your specialty wisely, to accomodate those beliefs.

    And please don't disregard our well meant advice as a putdown of you or your beliefs. Unlike you, we have had to actually work with patients, had their lives depend on our care, and dealt with well meaning coworkers w/family conflict, that have endangered that pt care.

    We know that these situations happen, because we have repeatedly seen them happen, and had to deal with the aftermath.

    Please do not label as "farfetched" what some of us encounter as a regular issue. What Pfitz described in the post that you label as "farfetched" is work as a regular matter of course in most facilities, good and bad. Even in the best of them.
    While the self-sacrifice that you seem to imply is necessary to be a good nurse may be the current reality (I don't know), it certainly shouldn't be. And doesn't need to be. There is no reason why a nurse should be chained to a bedside without relief at just about any time (people can be relieved during CODES for God's sake). It all has to do with how staff is managed. Not getting a break or being able to go home to attend to a family problem isn't a dedication issue, it's a staffing issue.

    This is one of the reasons why where's a nursing shortage and so much burn out. Nursing asks too much. The love it or leave it philosophy doesn't work anymore. Everyone is leaving it! And the new crop of nurses isn't going to stand for this kind of work place abuse.

    By the way, I've seen plenty of nurses who chat all day on their cell phones and their patient's are just fine. If there's an emergency, they just HANG UP. It's not that big of a deal. If they didn't maintain some connection to their families and life outside the hospital during long 12 hour shifts, I think they'd go koo koo.

    Cell phones should be viewed as a way to keep workers happy and productive and connected (to people inside and outside of the hospital). Doctors have integrated them into their work lives. (I've seen doctors take personal calls during surgery!) Would being able to talk to the nanny a couple of times a day for a few minutes keep a woman at the workplace or interfer with her job? It might see rude and unprofessional to take personal calls but it's the future, like it or not.
    Last edit by firstyearstudent on May 7, '07
  11. by   asgirl
    This is for the schools not the students:
    Make up your mind about what will be on the exam before the day of the exam, and make up your mind about when the exam will start before the day of the exam (both happened for my exam today, but why I am not surprised I don't know considering past antics of the school).
  12. by   PurpleFlower
    Make sure you don't put to much on your plate (ie extra classes and personal items) It will get you in the end!
  13. by   caroladybelle
    Quote from firstyearstudent

    This is one of the reasons why where's a nursing shortage and so much burn out. Nursing asks too much. The love it or leave it philosophy doesn't work anymore. Everyone is leaving it! And the new crop of nurses isn't going to stand for this kind of work place abuse.

    By the way, I've seen plenty of nurses who chat all day on their cell phones and their patient's are just fine. If there's an emergency, they just HANG UP. It's not that big of a deal. If they didn't maintain some connection to their families and life outside the hospital during long 12 hour shifts, I think they'd go koo koo.

    Cell phones should be viewed as a way to keep workers happy and productive and connected (to people inside and outside of the hospital). Doctors have integrated them into their work lives. (I've seen doctors take personal calls during surgery!) Would being able to talk to the nanny a couple of times a day for a few minutes keep a woman at the workplace or interfer with her job? It might see rude and unprofessional to take personal calls but it's the future, like it or not.
    No one is saying that you cannot talk on your break. That is what your break is for.

    And if you cannot go 12 hours (using your breaks to talk to people), then 8 hour shifts would be advised.

    No one goes "Kookoo" from doing their work when they are supposed to do their work and handling their personal life on the time alotted for it, barring emergencies. People have done so for centuries, without any harm to their mental health and were the better for it. If they do go "kookoo" from this then they have no business working at all, in nursing or any profession. They need to be seeking professional help.

    ANY PROFESSIONAL - not just nurses - need to keep the personal to personal time and the work to work time, again BARRING EMERGENCIES. And, no, you don't need to chit chat the shift away.

    What causes nursing burnout for many of us, is when we follow the nurse that spent hours chattering away on the phone. We have to fix the errors that s/he made, initiate the orders that s/he missed ("oops"), do something about the pressure areas on the patients that s/he didn't turn ("well, I thought the patient was turning themself"), clarify orders ("Well, I couldn't read them"). That is a big contributor to nurse burnout. Not to mention the ones that call family/friends and then get so caught up in drama on an hour by hour basis, that they are ruminating for the rest of shift.

    We all have family lives and we all discuss them periodically at work. And that is okay. But when you spend much of shift chatting about your latest breakup, you are not checking your patients, orders, stocking the carts....all things that you should be doing instead.

    I also get annoyed with the "Well, MDs do it and I see other nurses do it - so it must be okay". In the words of our elders (who raised several much more productive generations than our current one), "If everyone was jumping off a 1000 foot cliff, would you do it...because it must be okay?". It is not okay, and just because others do it, does not mean one should follow their example.

    I do not begrudge SAH her phone as long as she uses it responsibly. But mature adults do not have any reason to chit chat (excluding their breaks) at work. That goes for all professionals and is appropriate work ethic. It is not a major burden to ask that work time be work time....that is after all what we are getting paid for and what we owe our patients and our fellow nurses.

    You do not have to like what I say and it is not a putdown of your beliefs. When you are a nursing instructor/charge/manager you can feel free to permit what you wish. But you may note that many experienced nurses as well as students and instructors have restrictions on phone use. There are reasons for it.

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