Help! I can't change my age!

  1. I am a 43 year old pre-nursing student trying to work full time. I just started a new job temp job today and I have a feeling that they will not keep me. Nobody introduced me to the other staff. By afternoon, my supervisor would not look me in the eye. I am concerned because the agency told me that this company did not want anyone "too young or too old". I am the oldest in there (my boss is about 12 years younger). Also, there have been a few people in this position who were "let go" in the past 6 months who did not work out (so they say). I know ageism exists in the workplace. I have worked for 2 previous companies who did not hire qualified canidates because the supervisors did not want to hire anyone "older than them". I want to become an LVN & I hope my age will not be a hindrance to getting or keeping a job. But, when I was younger, I had no problem getting a job. I can not change my age. Any advice is very much appreciated. I am so worried because I need a job to pay my bills.
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  2. 13 Comments

  3. by   LisaCRN05
    Get out of that job. Find another! Ageism does exist and when it does in a particular place, GET OUT. You're not that old, come on! I went to school with a 50-year-old student who graduated at 52. We all loved her and she is a good nurse right now. Good luck.
  4. by   lisabeth
    That is so sorry. I dont know why people wont give everyone a chance. If you feel like this is what is going on, then I would definitely find another job. You are at work waaaay too long to be miserable and always walking on eggshells. I dont see how a company like that lasts too long. I have never experinced that. I worked for lawyers who were younger than I was and I promise, the only one it bothered was me.
    I wish you all the best in finding a GOOD job.

    Quote from sassy nurse lady
    I am a 43 year old pre-nursing student trying to work full time. I just started a new job temp job today and I have a feeling that they will not keep me. Nobody introduced me to the other staff. By afternoon, my supervisor would not look me in the eye. I am concerned because the agency told me that this company did not want anyone "too young or too old". I am the oldest in there (my boss is about 12 years younger). Also, there have been a few people in this position who were "let go" in the past 6 months who did not work out (so they say). I know ageism exists in the workplace. I have worked for 2 previous companies who did not hire qualified canidates because the supervisors did not want to hire anyone "older than them". I want to become an LVN & I hope my age will not be a hindrance to getting or keeping a job. But, when I was younger, I had no problem getting a job. I can not change my age. Any advice is very much appreciated. I am so worried because I need a job to pay my bills.
  5. by   81ke83
    I am 50 years old and going to nursing school. No one treats me any differently than if I were twenty. I think it is one profession that doesn't have as much age discrimination. I run circles around the kids that I go to school. I don't feel I will have any problem getting a job once I graduate. I think my outlook and how I feel about myself is key.
  6. by   4evrhisma
    it's age DISCRIMINATION and it's illegal. My advice would be to document everything.

    I recently started a job where the last person was laid off. At first I thought my supervisor didn't like me at all because she didn't talk to me, and when I said something she just kind of stared at me. I just plugged on, did my job. It took some time, at least a week but now we chat for at least ten to fifteen minutes after my shift, and it's all going good. I think she wanted to see if I was going to be like the last person before she opened up, who didn't do her job, or if I was for real.

    I would stick it out, because if they do let you go after you do a good job, because of your age, then that's their big legal problem. If you do a good job, who knows, you may be able to change their mind about "older" people.
  7. by   SummerGarden
    Hopefully, 4evrhisma is right that there is a chance that you need to give everyone more time to get to know you and see how you are working to act more comfortable around you. However, I highly suggest you brace yourself for a negative outcome as well.

    I think if your current employers want to fire you they will. Your supervisor and the others will come up with valid reasons to do so that will be submitted in your evaluation. If that does not work, your supervisor and/or co-workers will make your working environment a living nightmare so that you will quit. If either becomes the case, I personally agree with those who say to move on.

    I know that sounds wrong, but in all honesty it might be best. However, whatever you choose to do (stay or leave), I think you should document EVERYTHING!!!! Even document the actions of your co-workers. Who knows? If you have no choice but to leave because you were fired or because it is an unhealthy work enviroment, at least you have a paper trail to bust them for what they are doing and have done. Good luck.
    Last edit by SummerGarden on Oct 25, '06
  8. by   LMRN10
    I wouldn't want to work for a company that is known for letting people go like that anyway!! Job security!! Find another job...that's my advice!!

    Good luck to you!!
  9. by   BSNtobe2009
    Remember, the only thing that you owe a company is a two-week's notice.
  10. by   sassy nurse lady
    Here is the update to my situation. I decided to try to "hang tough" and stick it out since it is close to the holidays and I really need the paycheck. I was never introduced to the other employees and had to "work" along side them feeling like a ghost. Things with my supervisor have never really gelled though. I have gave it my best shot, and have worked really hard every day I have been there. Another employee confided in me that the supervisor has let go of eight people in the position within the past 8 months. Gee, that averages out to about 1 person a month. My month is almost up and I am ready to say "Adios, no gracias". I am afraid that MBA2BRN was right to expect a possible negative outcome. I am proud of the work I accomplished there as a "Temp". I hope the next person has a better experience there. I will be giving up my "hang tough" and find a job with a better "fit" for me. I still hold onto my dream of becoming a nurse. I am at a stage in my life that in my heart, I deeply want to be a nurse that takes care of patients with a compassionate heart and good nursing skills. Thanks everyone for the advice and for "listening".
  11. by   gonzo1
    I graduated from nursing school at age 47. Got a tele/med/surg job right away. Now work in ER. I'm 50. No ageism where I work but I have seen it before. You will find your niche. Keep up the good work and you will prosper.
  12. by   WDWpixieRN
    Wow, I'll trade ages with you if you can figure that out!! I'm 50 (will be 51 in December) and just completing my first semester of an ADN program...I found out a few weeks ago that there's at least one other gal in my class who's 3 years older than me!! And there's a 2nd or 3rd semester class that comes in after us one day a week and I swear there's 5 or 6 that look to be 60!! I haven't had a comment or sideways glance since I started...

    Don't let the numbers bother you...if you want to do this, you can....let the age issue go -- except if you think it's a factor on this job....then you may want to pursue some action, but choose your battles wisely as being the instigator of too much legal action can backfire if you end up having future legal issues and it gets brought up....

    Best wishes!!
  13. by   jyoung1950
    I noticed you were trying to find full-time work while going to school. Why don't you try to get a job at a hospital? If you have clerical skills, you could seek employment as a unit secretary (some hospitals call them health unit coordinators).

    I started out my health career (mainly because of job security - long story) by getting hired at a nursing home that trained one to become a certified nursing assistant. I worked there 2 1/2 years and learned a ton of things healthcare wise. Be forewarned, it is backbreaking, hard work.

    When I felt that I had a good handle on that job I went to work for a local hospital. At the hospital I knew there were many different fields I could get training in via on the job and college. Big plus - tuition reimbursement!

    I've been back and forth deciding whether to go to nursing school or not. Currently I'm in college for medical coding. But I do like the patient interaction part of it too. I've gotten excellent evaluations when it came to patient care and communication.

    Well, today, a nurse from another hospital presented a meeting about their nursing school and I decided - I'm going to take the plunge. I plan to take the pre-admittance test (NET) in January. This nursing school is full-time, 22 month program.

    And on top of it all, I am 56 - I'll be close to 59 when I graduate. The health care industry is one place you won't have to worry too much about age discrimination. As one nurse said to me recently when I wondered about the age issue, "Well, do you have a pulse?" Yes I answered. "Then don't worry about age."
  14. by   pegbord
    hooray for jyoung1950!!!! I am age 47 and just completed first semester of BSN program - 3 to go before I hit the job market. I am so pleased for you to take this plunge!!!! CONGRATS on a decision that seems to have been brewing for several years!! BTW, one woman in our program is age 55 and several of us are in our 40's. The age range in our 20-student class is vast, yet we all seem to have our valued place in the group and no sign of distinction based on age.

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