I too feel that the BSN should be the entry level into nursing. I read an editorial recently (written by a FNP with a MNSc)stating that the problems with nursing can be traced back to one underlying factor, which is the nursing "profession" has not remained steadfast in their conviction to abolish diploma and ADN programs. As a result, nursing continues to believe it is a profession when in actuality, it is nothing more than a dead-end "vocational" job. Consequently, nursing will never attract the best and the brighest, but instead settle for "junior college material" or "grade 13 grads".
I know many diploma and assoicate degree nurses who provide excellent care. Additionally, I feel that nursing provides more opportunities than any other career I can think of. However, I certainly see her point. Unless the best and the brighest have already chosen to pursue a career as an advanced practice nurse, I couldn't imagine why a highly intelligent and motivated person would choose nursing as a career. The concept of "It's a calling" or "They may just want to care for people" may be sweet, but lets be realistic. Healthcare has evolved into a highly profitable buisness where the bottom line is the allmighty dollar. Most kids today (and adults as well) associate nursing with bed pans, bed baths, and other menial tasks. It is perceived as a laborious "JOB" (vs.a career) that does not stimulate the brain, unless you call a migraine headache stimulation. Thus, those persons who could help to promote nursing into a more positive light are going into "more respective" fields. If one of these "scholars" strays from their group (and chooses nursing), then it is usually for the sole purpose of pursuing a career as a CRNA or NP.
Just one more thing. What about the media? This is an issue I have yet to see addressed. Do you really feel that Hollywood has done much to promote nursing? Television shows such as ER or Gideon's Crossing hardly ever, (IF EVER) show nursing in a positive light. In fact, I can't help but think that they strive to promote the negativity of nursing. Am I wrong? Maybe I am. But those shows really seem to expound nurses as being handmaidens who are mindless recorders of vital signs. Futhermore, they are really good at the menial tasks. "Let a nurse do that" (a menial task), (as if they don't have enough to do in reality). God forbid an MD getting there gloved hands into vomit or feces!!! Not in Hollywood!!!! These shows also seem to potray family members as being condescending towards nurses. If I'm wrong, please let me know. But the reason I state this is because these shows are very popular, and thus I feel that the public develops their perception of nurses based on these shows, and then carry it with them into hospitals later on. Again, why would a highly intelligent person pursue a four year degree to be belittled, unless they had the insight to a brighter future through advanced practice?