How do nurses "really" feel about students?

  1. I am just curious... I read all these posts from students talking about how the nurses treat the students so poorly during clinicals. And I have also read the posts about the great nurses who love to teach the students.. But the bad outweighs the good... And I was just curious as to how all you nurses out there actually feel about students.... Please be honest.. And also anyone have any good tips for someone who is starting the ADN program in January...

  2. Visit Ortho_RN profile page

    About Ortho_RN

    Joined: Nov '01; Posts: 1,616; Likes: 37
    New RN Grad... Just passed NCLEX.. Working on a Ortho floor


  3. by   ALISHAJO
    I like having students with me but I still have my job to do also...So when I get busy, I pick up the pace which sometimes leaves the students in my dust. You have to want the experience to get it. These are the students who follow me everywhere, ask questions and observe and listen, listen, listen to what is happening around them. Be assertive about your clinicals and time of learning....after all, you are paying for it!!!! Also give people some slack........not everyone everyday is Mary Sunshine and in the best mood.
  4. by   Linzi
    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.
  5. by   ERNurse752
    I love to teach students things...there's not a whole heck of a lot I can teach yet, seeing that I graduated in May, but it feels really good when I can! I like it when I take some time with a student, and then they come to me from then on with questions or comments. I know when I was in school, that's what I did -- someone reaches out to you, and then that's who you're comfortable going to for things. I think it also helps that I was just a student myself.
  6. by   Linzi
    Oops! Don't think I actually made my feelings clear - just got tied up in the aggro this bloody student caused me. Having been a student myself! (no really!) i am aware that RN's close ranks around students who act in a similar manner to that described. I personally love teaching students and new staff on the ICU i work in. My point was that some people simply don't want to be taught, or to learn - any tips on how to handle that one? These are the students of today who will be looking after us when we are old with broken hips or various other injuries and ailments. It is in our best interests to ensure that they know how to provide the best care possible, for all future patients they will encounter. My successes have been by teaching through example, making students feel comfortable in strange surroundings, so they feel able to question any aspect of the job. Some people don't know how to open themsleves up to such scrutiny, which is a shame as a safe environment, where you are not afraid to ask questions is an important aspect of the education we provide.
  7. by   mustangsheba
    I love having students, and I always volunteer to mentor, which is not generally allowed if one is an agency nurse. I am aware when students are on the floor, however, and I let them know I'm there for questions. I try to find out what procedures they need to be checked off on and let them know if anything interesting is happening. Above all, if there are any situations in which an error was made or narrowly avoided, I try to bring it to their attention as a learning tool. Students often feel they should be able to understand and interpret every order and may be reluctant to ask questions when orders are unclear or ambiguous. I let them know that after almost 20 years, I question orders every day - and it's okay.
  8. by   Whisper
    I realise this thread was probably meant for RGN's put I wanted to contribute. I am a firt year student and am just halfway through my first six week placement, on the CFP.

    My mentor is fantastic, she goes to great lengths to help me, and the other staff are kind and very helpfull. As part of my course I have to start mentoring other students, so I am on both sides of the fence.

    I see how students who want to learn get taught more, infact i know i teach better to my classmates who show interest. Otherwise i feel they are a hinderence, and i never want to be a student like that! Teaching for me is awkward and hard work, i loose interest in people not willing to learn, which I think is what happens to most qualified staff.
    Last edit by Whisper on Jul 7, '02
  9. by   Joshua21
    I love teaching students. The ones who want to learn that is (yes there is a very small number who truly don't want to learn). But a good point was made earlier. If you are a preceptor, you have a duty to your job and patients as well as the student and the student will be put out to learn on the fly. Sometimes bad impressions come of it unfortuneatly (sp?). It isn't a personal thing or a dislike of students. It's just the increasing demands of a health care system breaking down. Just keep in mind what you did like of your preceptor and emulate it as you become a grad. That was my path to success and I have had great experiences with students out at camp.

  10. by   thisnurse
    geez i wish i had you guys for my nurses when i was in school.

    as a student i was almost always treated like a pain in the nurses azz. ALMOST always but not always. they didnt like answering what they percieved as "stupid" questions and more than once i got yelled at when i should not have been. i can only remember one or two nurses who actually let me in on some very good learning experiences and acutally helped me.
    ill never forget how i was treated. i havent had a student yet, except in report, but i will remember
    how i was treated and try not to repeat that. its all about respect.
  11. by   hoolahan
    I looooove to have students!! I have to admit though, I have only ever had students in the ICU areas and PACU, where they aren't supposed to do anything w/o their instructor, just for observation. But I put them to work, I teach them head to toe assessment, have them get labs off the a-line, interpret abg's, etc... I will always volunteer for students, I love to teach.
  12. by   P_RN
    In one simple phrase. I love them.

    I was treated quite well when I was a student, and it is incumbent on me to pass on the good to the new generation.

  13. by   Marthaj777
    I always look forward to the students being on the floor. There are times that I ask them questions because it's things that I have just foregotten from nursing school. I always remember when I was in nursing school and how some of the nurses really intimidated me, which makes it impossible to learn. Even though I am a R.N. now, I would love it if I had a mentor that I could learn Critical Care from. I find that most nursing students are very efficient when doing their clinicals.
  14. by   NurseDennie
    I also have always liked having students. I think it sharpens you up when you are pointing things out to people. I've had a couple of students who didn't want to really work, and I've had ONE who already knew EVERYTHING and didn't want to listen to me, the instructor or anybody. Shame.

    I also have always made a point to thank them, because they really do help out when they're there.

    I know there were some nurses who were pretty mean to the students when I was a student, and later worked with both of them. It turns out they're not particularly nice to work with, either.

    The only thing that has frustrated me a bit is when they slow you down. You tell them you're going to be doing something interesting and they have to tell their instructor and get permission to be there..... Sometimes it's just easier to "sneak in" and do it quickly.

    Another part that I love is the changed relationship with the instructor. On the floor, I've worked with an instructor who just intimidated the HECK out of me when I was her student. But on the floor, we laugh and get along as equals and it's always shocked me when she's asked ME anything. OMG - I thought she knew it ALL!!!!