Feeling incompetent in nursing school

  1. I currently attend a "community college" RN nursing program, i am not "struggling" my average for most test tends to be around 82-86 with a few higher grades in the 88-92. during my clinical hours there are many other major nursing programs such as the University of Miami among others that also experience their clinical in the same hospital (Jackson memorial hospital), and i just cannot shake the feeling that when i graduate nursing school i will be incompetent in comparison to the new grads in other major nursing programs in the sense that those students graduated from a harder program than i did.
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    Joined: Nov '14; Posts: 47; Likes: 8

    18 Comments

  3. by   OldDude
    I'm pretty sure it just your imagination that the other programs are "harder." I expect they are more expensive, and thus, push this information to justify the fee. Just my opinion, however, from someone who attended a community college in the same town where the BSN college was on probation for high nclex failure rate.
  4. by   cleback
    Believe me, the students in the bsn programs are feeling lost on the floor too...
  5. by   Sour Lemon
    If you feel envious of BSN students, then seek out a BSN program, apply to it, and get accepted. My university cousin and my community college self used to have clinicals at the same hospital site. As far as I can tell, we were both incompetent dufuses upon graduation. I probably got out of debt faster than my cousin did, and my cousin had more education and more access to the opportunity that goes along with it. Neither of us had it all.
  6. by   beekee
    When you graduate, there are three truths in nursing: (1) no one cares about your gpa, (2) no one cares where you went to school, and (3) you are pretty incompetent, no matter what your grades were or where you went to school.

    Employers want to know (1) you have a license and, in some cases (but definitely not all), (2) that you have a BSN. You can get a BSN by way of one of the many, many RN to BSN programs in about a year.
  7. by   ItsThatJenGirl
    I'm in a BSN program. I highly doubt it's harder than an ASN program. The only real difference is a few classes like Research and Community Health or something like that. We all have to take the same exact test in the end.

    I do feel incompetent sometimes, but I've taken on a lot of volunteering (working with refugees, the lgbt population, and in clinical "deserts" around Texas) through my school, and it's done wonders for my confidence in working with not only patients, but physicians, med students, dental students and my future peers. Maybe you can look into something like that in your area?

    Regardless, we're all going to feel (and probably be) incompetent when we're released out into the world. A lot of nursing is learning on the job.
  8. by   Sour Lemon
    Quote from beekee
    When you graduate, there are three truths in nursing: (1) no one cares about your gpa, (2) no one cares where you went to school, and (3) you are pretty incompetent, no matter what your grades were or where you went to school.

    Employers want to know (1) you have a license and, in some cases (but definitely not all), (2) that you have a BSN. You can get a BSN by way of one of the many, many RN to BSN programs in about a year.
    In some markets, GPA actually does matter. Some new grad programs in my area have GPA requirements that must be met for consideration.
  9. by   Been there,done that
    You have been accepted to nursing school, and you are passing with flying colors! Just keep on, keeping on.

    Please stop worrying in advance. You will pass the same boards as everyone else.

    P.S. Worrying in advance is a great skill for nurses
  10. by   JKL33
    The program itself is one aspect of nurse preparation that may be better or worse. Another is personal effort and mastery of the information and concepts. It's a little confusing why you would focus your concern on your program unless there are obvious shortcomings of your program. Meanwhile, you could challenge yourself to achieve a thorough understanding of the information being presented. The person who does that comes out ahead.

    Good luck ~
  11. by   iluvivt
    Quit worrying and use your energy to keep learning. You do not graduate and then suddenly you are a great nurse.You do, however ,want to be a safe one and that entails knowing your strengths and weaknesses,acknowledge when you do not know something and seek out help,cultivate critical thinking skills and recognizing that learning never stops and that is just a few.
  12. by   Lulu Belle
    My BSN program is nowhere as difficult as our community college counterpart, and I promise you we probably feel 2x as incompetent as those ADN students.

    I actually overheard a conversation in the elevator between a nurse educator and a nurse manager where the educator was telling the manager what a fantastic group of students she has from the community college and how highly she would recommend them to her as new nurses.

    ETA: what I've noticed about BSN vs. ADN programs is that the associate degree ones have a lower standard for acceptance, but they "weed out" the incompetent students by making their standards super high and strict. At least in the case of my program, it's much harder to get in, but also waaaay easier to stay in. Hardly anyone fails out, even after making some pretty egregious offenses.

    In terms of actual academic preparation, the difference between a BSN and an ADN is a few research/leadership type classes. I don't know, it seems silly to me that a BSN grad would feel superior to an ADN grad, or vice versa.
    Last edit by Lulu Belle on Apr 21 : Reason: had another thought
  13. by   Charge200J
    At the end of the day you know what your patient calls the person with a stellar GPA who came from a well-known program...nurse. You know what they call the person with the average GPA from a small program...nurse. It's who you are as a person and who you become as a nurse that matters a whole lot more than what school or program you came from. You just focus on graduating and passing the NCLEX and getting your first job. The rest will all smooth itself out in the end.
  14. by   kbrn2002
    Those BSN programs are likely not any harder than your ADN program, at least from the clinical training standpoint. It may if fact be the opposite. The nursing programs where I live are pretty well known for graduating nurses from the ADN programs that are better prepared clinically than the BSN program.

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