I'll share my reason for asking this.
I decided to go back to school two years ago. Long story short, I am halfway through a part-time RPN (LVN) program here in Canada. I have a year a half to go (it's a two year full-time diploma here, so will take me longer than the year I think it is in the states, especially going part-time). I loved my classes, have straight A's. I had planned to keep my office job until the bitter end. I hated my boss; he was mean, spiteful and demeaning. My school was a shining goal to look toward. I volunteered at a LTC facility to gain experience, loved working with the seniors. Decided I would work in LTC when a graduate (a likely location for an LVN anyway!).
Fast forward to this past January - my boss discovered I was going to school to totally change careers. The mood darkened. He was furious, and when the companies finances hit the skids, despite working there for five years and getting good reviews - I was the first one out the door.
I had a choice. I could go on unemployment and find another office job. Or, I could live frugally on my retirement savings, and get a Certificate in Personal Support Worker (CNA in the US). Here in Canada, they will NOT hire you as a CNA without this four month certificate. I thought, hmmm, I'll get the certificate. So, for almost four months now, I've been attending one full-time program during the day, then heading to another college at night to continue in my LVN studies. I'm exhausted
But, I still have straight A's - could have gotten A+'s if I hadn't been in two programs - and finish my PSW/CNA certificate in two weeks.
My dilemma? My clinical placement for the PSW/CNA has been at a LTC facility from hell. I LOVE the residents. But the staff!!!! They argue, yell, the turnover is constant, etc. etc. My first floor I was told straight out by the Nurse that I was NOT to ask her any questions, as she was the nurse and could not be bothered. The staff ignored us. I made beds for three weeks. Eventually, our clinical teacher got fed up and reported to the DOC what was going on. The DOC had "words" with the staff about us, and then one PSW came at us (while we were bathing a poor resident!) SCREAMING that we wanted her job and we reported her. Luckily, our teacher defused the situation, and I was ecstatic to go to another floor. Again, love the residents, but...sigh. I was partnered with a preceptor, who was very good at her job, but claimed we were "way too slow" (hello, just started!) and spent her days "confiding" in me about the other staff who were, in her estimation, about to be (a) reported (b) fired (c) incompetent (d) not as good as her. The woman complained about EVERYONE.
Twice this week, I came home in tears. Not because I hate the job, though the pay is low and the work is hard, I enjoy working with the residents. I love them. But the staff! I kept thinking "what is this woman saying about ME behind my back??". She expressed interest when she found out I was in the LVN program. I photocopied all my notes for the entrance exam, brought her copies of the course outlines, the program coordinators phone # etc. She then spent two days walking around telling everyone she was going to be a nurse, she was going back to school, and she told me that she could "easily just get my license from the experience I have here, but I suppose I'll have to take the classes" ummm, yeah.
Friday was my last day, and I'm heading to a Palliative Care Hospice on Monday for my final placement. I desperately need a job, and I've applied to the LTC from hell, but in a way...I hope I get a job somewhere else. Yikes.
One good thing - the preceptor did give me a glowing review. She said I was very organized, a good listener, good team player, and that my speed will increase with practice. So I suppose I should be happy.
I know that healthcare is cutthroat, I'm just really....second guessing myself. Any advice? Thanks.