An astounding lack of diversity in nursing - page 5

I pasted my comment from another thread (above) into its own thread because I'm interested in why y'all think there is such a lack of diversity in nursing and what you think the solutions should be.... Read More

  1. by   ZASHAGALKA
    I think programs should add a clinical or two at the end of the programs (in addition to the current clinical hours) for students to reach into the community to be role models for nursing. I think those clinicals should factor race and sex. Male nursing students should go into boy scout meetings, etc., and promote nursing. Minorities students should go into like minority community centers for after school youths and promote nursing. The more our youth see similar peers promoting the concept, the more their interests might be sparked.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
    Last edit by ZASHAGALKA on Feb 1, '07
  2. by   EmerNurse
    Timothy - I always love your posts - they're always well thought-out and intelligent.

    But I STILL say, give race a darn REST! So I had a cultural affinity for nursing? Since when? I wasn't raised around nurses, I wasn't recruited, never met a nurse in HS except the health teacher one year, didn't have a medical background and hadn't a clue WHO was becoming nurses, race-wise. I have a cultural affinity for pasta - that's what I have a cultural affinity for.

    If you want people to be nurses, ANY people, then let's TELL PEOPLE what we do. In ALL highschools, not just minority schools. In ALL communities, not just minority communities. Make nursing as a career choice as common on one's lips as Mickey Dee's for lunch. Nursing sure does need an overhaul - sure does need a good PR campaign, but I do not believe that basing it on race does anything at all to bring about equality.

    I totally agree with you that schools should look at and be graded on attrition. The nursing school forums here are FULL of students who are bullied by nasty instructors, dropped from school when something might have been done - nursing schools seem to have an US against the Students attitude (I remember from my own days). We were treated like children, insulted on a daily basis, and made to feel like idiots. "You should have read that" should never be an answer. If it needs explaining more, then explain it. And I'm not denying that there is still racism in the world and in the world of nursing - racism on MANY sides, I might add. However, if you take race OUT of all of these equations, then someday, just maybe, when someone does bring up race, the rest of the country will look at them like they have two heads, because it will be so RARE.

    I will support any initiative that supports ALL races, all communities and people's option to become a nurse. Just don't base it on race/skin color. That's just getting old.

    And for the record, I am a white female in a VERY culturally diverse area, where there are very very much more hispanic and black nurses (from both this country and many others) where I work.

    I don't judge people based on race and I'm very very tired of folks of other races assuming I do, just because I'm white. So sorry - in my next life I'll plan it better. Like ANY of us have a choice.
  3. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Quote from EmerNurse
    If you want people to be nurses, ANY people, then let's TELL PEOPLE what we do. In ALL highschools, not just minority schools. In ALL communities, not just minority communities. Make nursing as a career choice as common on one's lips as Mickey Dee's for lunch. Nursing sure does need an overhaul - sure does need a good PR campaign, but I do not believe that basing it on race does anything at all to bring about equality.
    I agree. Those extra clinicals would include white female students going into all our youth communities to promote nursing as well. The POINT would be a radical overhaul of sparking interest, at a young age.

    But, I think that minority and male youths might be MORE sparked if those that promote nursing to them are similar peers. It's a matter of identifying with the role model.

    Take race out of it for a minute. Imagine the power of boy scouts hearing from a male student nurse 2 weeks from graduating. We need to recruit more males, as well. We need to recruit more white females down the road as well, so having white female students out there recruiting would be part of the solution, too.

    This is a generic concept that would apply to all students and all forums. I'm just suggesting that we pair the forum to the role model, is all.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
  4. by   ICU_floater
    While I've learned so much from this thread, it leaves me with a thought that I'm unable to answer, being a white female....

    .... what has the black or any minority community done to recruit, lament the status of that of an RN.? How does ones cultural community hold a higher standard to this position?

    I'm at a bad negative day today, where I see race unimportant as we're ALL treated inferiorly, with a pretense of management to have a say-so, which we are never truly given in the end.

    I see us ALL, every race suffering through this nursing shortage, overstaffing, customer service, press gainey scores... and I don't see any cultural differences, struggling to provide the required 5* service with 2* resources on upping each other, no matter what lab coat we don.

    as a female, the black male in a lab coat will be called doctor, treated better as a male by physicians then I. I still don't see this as a race or gender issue... to me... we're all drowning here..... and only WE can save ourselves, not by further pointing out or deliniating gender or race, but working together as nurses.

    I miss your point entirely....I see my peers no different than me.

    Rather than separate, perhaps you can focus your energy on unifying. I have nothing else to say. I've said it all.

    carol
  5. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Ultimately, this isn't an issue of any particular nurse, but one of demographics. When nursing under-recruits minorities by a factor of 3, something is amiss.

    It's easy to throw up hands in disgust that this is yet another personal accusation that shouldn't be leveled at all us white nurses that don't personally discriminate.

    But the demographics don't lie. There IS something that needs to be addressed. It's not an issue of a 'blame game', but one of fostering empowerment.

    Ultimately, that empowerment will benefit us all. Therefore, it's worth some time and consideration.

    Nobody is BLAMING any one of you (us) for being white. However, noting an astounding gap, it is reasonable to ponder why that gap exists, in the first place. More important, it is reasonable to ponder how to address it.

    Just because none of you are at fault for creating this gap does not mean the gap therefore doesn't merit being addressed.

    I'm not pondering quotas or 'reverse discrimination', rather, how to bring more of ALL RACES to a future table that will suffer from the future demographics that govern it. It just so happens at this time that there are plenty of white women (82% of all nurses) interested in nursing. How do we get more of ALL races (and both sexes) interested in nursing, to benefit that future for all of us? Since that future will see many more minorities in the demographics, we must address those areas as well, or we will all come up short.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
    Last edit by ZASHAGALKA on Jan 31, '07
  6. by   Mission
    Quote from Huscarl73
    Ok, I will call your raise.

    Discovernursing.com

    Search criteria
    State: Mississippi
    Gpa 3.5
    Ethnicity No restriction
    Program Undergraduate

    In spite of these criteria it returned 32 scholarships funded by various institutions far far away. Which require committing to working there for X amount of time. Which I believe falls into my criteria of terms I'm not willing to accept.

    BSN or LPN bridge programs-3
    Religious affiliation-4
    Gender (opposite)- 2
    Ethnicity - 8
    with no location restrictions
    Other -3
    other includes criteria such as participation in equine activites, go figure
    All - 1
    all includes my criteria, adn, with no gender or ethnicity requirements

    Didn't have the same luck at DiscoverNursing. I only found 4 scholarships for Hispanics, 2 from the same organization, none worth over $2000 (not much of a dent in the $80,000 I needed last year), all had a financial need requirement (I'm not going to qualify) and one required I be fluent in Spanish (I'm not). Sorry darling, I know you want someone to blame, but at the end of the day scholarships go to really smart and/or really poor people. When you stack that up against the economic power of whites who could possibly send there kids to school for free versus minorities that can afford to do that, a couple of $2000 scholarships really don't make it even. I know at least 5 women, I'm sure there were more, at my school who had it paid for by mommy and daddy, and this is a second degree program. But when I looked around the classroom, there were only 3 Latinas, even though the school is located in an area that 90% Dominican, and I don't know about the other 2 students but I'm not from the area. I realize you're not one of the fortunate ones but that doesn't erase the fact that racism has and continues to exist in this country, and that economic imbalance that it causes creates serious disadvantages for minorities. I'm not mad that I can't get a scholarship because I'm not poor so I don't see what you are so upset about. Maybe you don't know a lot of minorities, I know many, and none of my friends got scholarships because of their race, it was poverty and academic achievement that got them money. My roommate in college (not a minority) however, got more grant money from the school then me because of her financial "need", this despite the fact that she kept on campus a $25000 horse, a $20000 truck and a $15000 trailer for the horse. Her dad was a detective for the LAPD, my dad for the NYPD, her mom was a stewardess, my mom was a secretary. Her parents knew how to work the system, mine didn't. So really, can we drop the whole, minorities get all this scholarship money bs, my $130,000 in student loans are quite a testament to the fact that it's just not true.
  7. by   GardenDove
    It shouldn't cost $130,000 to go to nursing school, that's ridiculous. Also, I have four grown white male sons, I'm white, and I can't afford to give them all an educational carte blanche. My kids all pay their own way, so stereotyping white people as all living on easy street is a bunch of annoying bs, imho.
  8. by   PurrRN
    Timothy, I have two questions I'd like you to address.

    The WHY aren't more minorities interested in a nursing career. Obviously no solution will be effective until this is understood. I don't have any personal experience to help me understand what prevents a minority individual from making the same descision I did.

    And how you think that lessening the attrition % at schools will help minorities any more than white individuals.

    I'm lucky to be going to a school at a military base where diversity is a fact of life. I think I'm also lucky that my school doesn't seem to play as many head games as I've read here on the board. The teachers are supportive and I've never heard of anyone failing clinicals because the teachers will just keep recycling teaching with testing for you to pass. HOWEVER, we still lost 12 out of 41 students the first semester because of grades. The school should be punished because the students didn't study enough?

    People (no matter what race) still need to take personal responsibility and step up if they want to pass.
  9. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Quote from SiamCat1
    Timothy, I have two questions I'd like you to address.

    The WHY aren't more minorities interested in a nursing career. Obviously no solution will be effective until this is understood. I don't have any personal experience to help me understand what prevents a minority individual from making the same descision I did.

    And how you think that lessening the attrition % at schools will help minorities any more than white individuals.

    I'm lucky to be going to a school at a military base where diversity is a fact of life. I think I'm also lucky that my school doesn't seem to play as many head games as I've read here on the board. The teachers are supportive and I've never heard of anyone failing clinicals because the teachers will just keep recycling teaching with testing for you to pass. HOWEVER, we still lost 12 out of 41 students the first semester because of grades. The school should be punished because the students didn't study enough?

    People (no matter what race) still need to take personal responsibility and step up if they want to pass.
    I addressed your first question much earlier in the thread. I think it's a combination of a lack of personal role models (less percentages of family members in nursing) combined with the current demographics of nursing sending a powerful suggestion that minorities can't break that glass barrier.

    Substitute women in corporate America for this debate for just a moment. Let me suggest that more women aren't CEOs or highly elected politicians because they aren't interested: I mean - WHY DOES IT ALWAYS HAVE TO BE ABOUT WOMEN! It just so happens that more men want those jobs, more pursue it, and so more attain it. It's not MY fault as a male that I was the one that got the CEO position.

    A few people suggested that nursing is more of a service, "dirty" job that rebels against past historical perspectives. I don't think so. Others have rightly pointed out that there are more minority LPN/LVNs and certainly there are a better mix of minorities in UAP jobs: so that doesn't make sense to me. I think there is a real issue of evaluating success in a field that proves by its very demographics to be relatively out of reach for too many.

    So, I think the issue is promoting the idea of becoming an RN as one that IS within reach.

    That is ONE of the reasons I suggested the concept of attrition, your second question. Better effort at reducing attrition would help everyone. IF your concern is getting through the program, for whatever reason, that is just more reason to reach for it. THAT concept would break through for more minorities, allowing them to grasp hold of the concept of getting through if they can just get in.

    As far as placing the burden on programs for the academic success of their students, I think that is entirely relevant. The PLACE to determine success if BEFORE matriculation. Those seats are just too darn precious to throw them away as easily as most programs do.

    We have all kinds of entry standards and exams to evaluate potential success. THAT is the place to make those determinations. Once made, the programs should be forced to place as their prime directive, not just the pass rate of grads, but getting those students to that finish line, as well.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
    Last edit by ZASHAGALKA on Feb 1, '07
  10. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from spacenurse
    If other states mirror mine the majority of LVN/LPNs are minority nurses. I think there should be tuition, stipend, mentoring programs to encourage and assist these nurses to earn their RN. And especially more "bridge" programs.

    It would improve the lack of diversity while lessenining the RN shortage at the same time.

    And these nurses have proven they can handle aspects of nursing many cannot.
    I agree with what you have mentioned. Over this past summer, I was reading a statistic from Medscape that indicated that the pool of LPNs/LVNs in America includes many more racial-ethnic minorities than the pool of American RNs.

    I am one of these minority LVNs. Currently I am taking classes at a local community college, attempting to gain acceptance into an LVN-to-RN bridge program in the area.
  11. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from Huscarl73
    I'm going to have to agree with this. I have found a handfull of scholarships that are avaliable to me. I think without exception they are 'national' companies offering them to anyone. I can find page after page of scholarships avaliable based upon race and I don't have a problem with the idea of it. If some Indian tribes want to have scholarships for their children to go to school and then come back, no problem here. Beyond these few highly competitive programs I cannot find a single scholarship that will offset any of my education that doesn't come with terms I'm not willing to accept.
    This means that I'm paying for mine as I go out of pocket.

    Back to your regularly scheduled debate...
    I am an African-American female who recently paid off over $20,000 in student loans. The plethora of race-based scholarships does not truly exist. The largest scholarship award I have received in my lifetime was $350.00 and it was not race-based.

    I, too, am currently paying for my classes with my hard-earned dollars. Please stop spinning these bigotry-dusted inaccuracies.
  12. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from GardenDove
    If I were having a baby I wouldn't want a male nurse...
    I apolgize for sounding rude or offensive, but here's my blunt point of view.

    It is tremendously silly for a laboring woman to refuse care from a male L&D nurse when she will turn around and willingly accept care from a male obstetrician. Most obstetricians are males. Actually, the male doctor gets to see more 'action' than the male nurse (episiotomy cuts, vaginal rugae, everything, etc).
  13. by   GardenDove
    I wouldn't want a male doctor either. I had homebirths with midwives. I go to a female doctor.

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