Why do students get asked to do everything?

  1. Don't you just hate it when you are asked to do everything? Yes, you are the new person. Yes, you are just a student.

    What was the worse thing that anyone asked you to do at a learning environment?

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    About Brian, ADN

    Joined: Mar '98; Posts: 15,433; Likes: 16,403
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    Specialty: 18+ year(s) of experience in CCU, Geriatrics, Critical Care, Tele


  3. by   Staragate
    No. I don't hate it. I love the opportunity to practice stuff.
  4. by   VioletKaliLPN
    I was never asked to do anything out of the ordinary for a Nursing student, or anything I felt was degrading, demeaning, or gross. Someone with broken arms did ask me to scratch an itch on the top of their foot. This person tried with the other foot, but let's just say coordination was not exactly his strong point. I hate foot itches, so I made sure his foot would stop. Hopefully someone will do that for me if I fall off a roof doing construction and break my arms.
  5. by   sugarmagnoliaRN
    I have heard some terrible stories from nurses about things they were asked to do as a student, but I don't feel that I've ever been asked to do anything unreasonable. I love the opportunity to practice, and usually tell nurses and techs up front that I'm there to learn and to help - anything I can do to lighten their loads, they can throw my way (as long as its within the scope of my practice as a student, of course). I spent a day in the ER, and I will say their approach to students is slightly different - they don't ask you to do things, they tell you! (And you better do it quick, fast & in a hurry! )
  6. by   sugarmagnoliaRN
    Side note - not really something I was asked to do by a nurse, but I was helping a fellow student do a bath & bed change on a total care patient once... this woman had a lot of skin breakdown, which of course was all over the bed, especially after we bathed her. The tech came in & helped us (the patient was very contracted & had a large stage III on her coccyx) with changing the bed. The tech and I were standing on opposite sides of the bed and she fluffed up the old sheet (filled with skin flakes and leakage from the patient's rectal tube) so that a waft of nastiness went right into my face. Ahhhh, the perks of being a student...
  7. by   RNFiona
    You should want to do as much as possible
  8. by   RNFiona
    You think only students get afforded the luxury of wafts of nastiness in their faces? Think again.
  9. by   francoml
    When I am in clinical I do as much as I can... Trying to get a job next year in the ER!!
  10. by   SleeepyRN
    I didnt feel the OP was complaining about learning opportunities. When I was in nursing school, I also worked as a tech in a hospital. I remember when I was working, I would hear other techs say "good, nursing students are here, they can do this" meaning scut work and pretty much being taken advantage of. As a student, I was all for helping out the techs, but we definitely were taken advantage of, and did less "nursing" because of it. One clinical day, the hospital was down a tech, so my instructor had me do all the tech work and didnt assign me a patient that day for nursing. We only had 6 days on that unit, and my education was compromised because my tech experience was taken advantage of. Still, I did it with a smile on my face and never complained about it once til now, where I can do it anonymously
  11. by   Wrench Party
    Heck yeah I like doing stuff! The federal government and I are both paying for me to be there and learn, so I better
    take advantage of all the opportunities. If I can, I like to turn a bed bath or whatever into an opportunity to
    do an assessment, talk to the patient, etc. It makes the day go by faster.

    Now I could have lived without the C diff stool patient...but you can't win them all...
  12. by   Nrsasrus
    That is such a bummer considering you were paying for that experience. You should have gotten a refund for that day
  13. by   littlepeopleRNICU
    I'm sure there are some nurses out there who probably do "abuse the privilege" of having students around, but I have never seen this by a nurse, and I never experienced it myself. Sure, I have had nurses ask the clinical instructors, "I have such and such for a patient, do yall want to do it?", and I have even asked them that myself. But that's a learning experience. Even if it's something you have done 10 times before, another chance at doing it is always for the better! Just because you've gotten to do it that many times this semester, doesn't mean you're going to do it any more during your program. You may get to cath 3 people in your 2nd semester, then never have the opportunity to cath again until you're graduated. Plus, every patient scenario is different. Any opportunity to practice ANYTHING can be a learning experience for a student or a nurse.
  14. by   PalmHarborMom
    I have been privileged to be able to assist the nurses during clinicals doing everything that they do. I'm doing clinicals on a Spinal Cord Unit at a VA hospital. Many of our patients are quads and need total care and others are para's. This is just my first semester but I have done bed baths, measuring I&O's, suctioning tracks, watched PICC lines being inserted, bowel care, catheter care/ insertions, wound care, assessments and most importantly witnessed that nurses care about their patients. I have been asked by patients to do many things and that's OK. One gentleman, in particular, was a quad with severe contracture on all extremities. My nurse was charting and I took that time to give this gentleman a bath. He was happy to have someone give him a real bath (not just wipes). While doing his face, he asked me to brush his hair and put vaseline in it. Considering that I am not familiar with african american hair care, I explained to him that I needed instruction on what to do. He gladly gave the instructions. Before I left, he thanked me. Throughout the semester, I had the fortune to assist in his care. Other than learning a type of hair care that was different from my own, everything that I did for him, I did MANY times throughout the semester. BUT by the end, I was much more proficient and had a greater appreciation for life. Many of my patients can't scratch their nose if it itches.

    I understand that there will be patients that make what seem to be odd requests. There are 2 things that we can do, one... do it for them if they can't. And two.... if they are physically able, try to prompt them to do for themselves.

    We as students will graduate and still have alot to learn. Everything that we have the opportunity to do while in school is a gift. That includes the things that we are asked to do over and over again. Those will be the things that we will not feel totally inept at doing once we graduated.