I haven't started yet, (I will in a few short months WOOOHOOOO) BUT I hear about it all the time from friends, associates, and on these boards.
I understand being cut throat, and competitive BEFORE getting in, given how hard it is to get into some schools
. But I can not understand the mentality ONCE IN.
I mean once your in, your in, no one can take that away from you but YOU.
Those of you that have or are experiencing this, I would love your input. I am strictly just curious, I am not worried about myself when it comes to other students. I am usually pretty good at dealing with all kinds of people even if that means tuning them out. I am just trying to understand this mentality. It seems like everyone made it to the finish line, but is still trying to eliminate there opponent after the fact. Not literally everyone, but you get my point.
May 24, '09
Some of the factors that contribute to a competitive culture in nursing school are:
1. The people who "won the competition" to get acceptive to highly selective program may simply be competitive in their personalities. They will never be happy unless they are ranked near the top of their class -- which means doing better than their classmates.
2. The people who "earned a slot" in the program may be the type of people who are perfectionists by nature and who will not be satisfied unless they get "A's" in everything.
3. If you go to a school that used norm-referenced grading, then only the top students will get "A's." If only the top 10% or 20% or whatever is allowed to get an "A" in a class, that means the students have to compete against the other students to get good grades. For example, I went to a school in which it was guaranteed that those who scored in the bottom 50% of the class would be given a "C" or worse. Given that the class was composed of high-achievers who did not want to get "C's," that set up a cut-throat culture.
4. Some students are hopring to go to graduate school ... or earn a spot in a very selective extern program or new grad internship, etc. They know they need good grades to be selected for what they want to do AFTER nursing school. For them, the competition for getting into nursing school was only the first step. Now, they are competing for what happens next.
... and, unfortunately... Sometimes, competition brings out the worst in some people.
Good luck to you. I hope you make some good friends in school and have a positive experience. I went to a highly competitive school years ago and suffered because of the stress. But I survived and made some very good friends among my classmates. The experience made me stronger in the long run, and I am at peace with my battle scars.
Last edit by llg on May 24, '09