Foreign Nurses in the US: second class or not - page 2

In a previous thread that is now closed by the admin, it was mentioned that a foreign nurse will always be behind a US-trained nurse in the US health care culture. This reference was made in... Read More

  1. by   suzanne4
    Passing of the NCLEX exam in the US, or any licensure exam in other countries has no bearing on the actual physical skill level of the nurse; or what they will do in a certain situation.

    Passing of the NCLEX exam is only at the level of the new nurse and just trying to make sure that they will practice safely.

    But it has nothing to do with doing assessments or anything else that is taken for granted.
  2. by   wishiwereanurse
    Quote from pinoyNP
    ...and I think that unfortunately is a common misconception held by some nurses coming from other countries. Some think that one can easily become a RN in the US because it only takes 2 years to finish the ADN degree, so why can't any American take advantage of this so that there would be no nursing shortage. But many do not realize that there is a sizable amount of interest in pursuing a career in nursing among Americans. However, many applicants to US nursing programs whether it's ADN or BSN have a hard time even getting in to a program. A lot of these hopefuls have to endure being waitlisted, being put on a lottery system for admission, or being denied admission even though they meet all qualifications because the school can only take a certain amount of students. Nursing school in the US is very competitive to get into and very rigorous once you do get into a program. And even the so-called 2-year ADN program can last up to 4 years with all the pre-requisite courses required for entry.
    There are people who want to pursue nursing in America, but the reason why they limit the amount of people who can get into a program is because of the fact that a classroom fills up in the beginning of the semester, then come midterms students start dropping off. It must be heartbreaking for an educator to see that only a few students are left interested in what (s)he has to say, and also a waste of time and energy. So it was wise actually, they put a hurdle. And you are right, it is only an interest, people start dropping out of nursing subjects/prerequisites when they are no longer interested, and people are now back to nursing just because of the bad economy.

    A nurse from any other country, is still a nurse. Regardless of whether (s)he is trained the American way or not, (s)he should be treated with equal respect. Labeling a foreign nurse second class doesn't do any good, just a temporary boost of ego and a reflection of low esteem. To me it was interesting learning things from foreign nurses. They are classroom-trained with the ideal standards, but when out in the world they use the only available resources they have and make innovations in order to provide care for patients.
  3. by   juan de la cruz
    Quote from wishiwereanurse
    There are people who want to pursue nursing in America, but the reason why they limit the amount of people who can get into a program is because of the fact that a classroom fills up in the beginning of the semester, then come midterms students start dropping off. It must be heartbreaking for an educator to see that only a few students are left interested in what (s)he has to say, and also a waste of time and energy. So it was wise actually, they put a hurdle. And you are right, it is only an interest, people start dropping out of nursing subjects/prerequisites when they are no longer interested, and people are now back to nursing just because of the bad economy.
    This is not what I am seeing in Michigan where I live and have experience teaching in an ADN program at a community college. Universities and colleges offering the BSN program have been complaining that they have to turn away students because they have limited slots for their program as there are not enough instructors and other teaching staff to handle a large amount of students. Many universities are actually committed to graduating their freshmen nursing students. Attrition in BSN programs tend to be low. Number of students admitted as first year are usually close to the same number by the time this same group reaches the senior year.

    Community colleges or junior colleges here have a different scenario. Because these institutions are based in each community, there is a committment to admit all students even those with less than stellar prior academic grades. No student is turned away and because of the large number of applicants, some use a waitlist system to give each applicant the same chance to get in. However, some colleges in this area have started using entrance exams and a grade point priority system. But number of applicants continue to be the largest because of the affordability of these programs. Community college programs are very rigorous - almost run like the military. Dress code is strictly enforced in the clinical setting and poor attendance/tardiness can get one kicked out of the program. Apart from a strict demand for academic success, this is their way of weeding out students.

    What I saw teaching at a community college is that students NEVER lose interest in wanting to be a nurse. Many have dreamt of being a nurse from as far as they can remember but got sidetracked when their life turned a different direction such as marriage and raising kids. Many are mature individuals who work and pay for their schooling while raising kids. Many are non-traditional college students. Many would make excellent, caring, and compassionate nurses. However, community colleges are very strict and enforce a very rigorous progession through the two years of the nursing program. I had students who were great in clinicals but just weren't able to hurdle the tough exams they had to take in lectures and were asked to leave the program. I would be very careful claiming that all these students had in themselves was "interest" in the programs. These students didn't fail because they lost interest in the program and in nursing, they put in all their effort just like everybody else did but just didn't make the cut. Many actually leave in tears.

    I am one to defend that a foreign-trained nurse can have as much potential as anyone. However, it is very unfair to minimize the efforts made by US nurses in getting to where they are. Their degrees were not handed to them easily. It is also irresponsible to label those who do not graduate in nursing programs as failures because they lost interest.
  4. by   Ginger's Mom
    I also teach in a community college, the policies are strictly enforced if a student does maintain a 75 average they are out. No exceptions even if they have a 74.999% average and a good clinical review. Students with an average over 70% may repeat the class, but third time you are out.

    I find it heart breaking since many work full time while attending school and night. I also agree the 2 year program is more like a 3-4 year program.

    I had one student who told me that she applied to every community college, she had a 3.86 average and still could not get in. She told me many schools had only accepted students with a 4.0 average

    That been said, I believe in the perfect world the BSN would be the entry into nursing.

    I have not heard that one country trains nurses better then another country, I often think it is what the individual nurse brings to table, the desire to learn, to assist other nurses, being a patient advocate, and being a team player all factor in to what a new nurse brings to the table.

    I also feel some programs teach critical thinking better then other programs, which assist new nurses to gain information without being dependent on the seasoned nurses. ( I am referring to the fact some schools will teach students how to research policies and procedures better than just depend on the seasoned nurses to answer all their questions).
  5. by   GoneFishN
    Quote from wishiwereanurse
    "Credentials can never accomplish what character can." I believe the reason why foreign nurses will always amount to, or even surpass, US nurses is because of the character-building they undertake, going through hurdles just to achieve what an American can only take for granted...

    So untrue.


    (I am aware this is a old post. I couldn't resist putting my 2 cents in.)

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