In my experience as an RN, the majority of students are well looked after and treated with respect, and deservedly so! However, you do on occasion get the odd "issue" with a student. My example is based in my clinical area of a general intensive care unit, where i'm sure it is safe to say, there is plenty to learn and plenty to interest even the most jaded on students! One recent student, on her first day, launched into a personal statement of how she couldn't wait to marry a doctor. She proceeded to sit at the desk on every shift (she was only on placement for two weeks) and yawn when her mentor tried extremely hard to motivate this creature to learn. The closest she got to a patient was to flirt outrageously with the young visitors of a young patient! This behaviour is unacceptable in my mind. The next comment to come from her mouth was that she couldn't wait to qualify because she would never have to take a blood pressure, or pulse or empty a urinal again, as these were jobs "for the healthcare assistant".
This was a third year student, two months away from qualifying, who fails to realise at the end of her training, that these three "tasks" are important basic assessment tools. I was filled with horror.
However, one bad exerience is not enough of an excuse for the bad treament of students in general. Interested students are an absolute pleasure to teach, and indeed learn from. The one's that can't be bothered however, do get exposed to a level of contempt, wether consciously or sub-consciously, it is terrifying, to think that someone described above, thinks she is above nurses with a wealth of experience, simply because she had the brains to pass a degree. I think respect is a two way thing, and in no way did she earn the respect of any of my team members. Time will tell as to wether she shapes up or not, she is on a rotational post and will be returning to icu for a six month placement and i have the immense pleasure of being her mentor! The majority are a delight.