Latest Comments by Tim1957

Tim1957 533 Views

Joined: Oct 31, '05; Posts: 38 (8% Liked) ; Likes: 3

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    I am fifty-two years old and I am currently in my second semester of my local ADN program. Before pursuing this, I never even once worked in the medical field.

    No, you are never too old.

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    Quote from FockerInTraining

    I'm not going to get into a pissing match with you on who is right or wrong, I truly do understand where you are coming from. I just don't understand how you can sit there and say that students with a C average lack excellent study habits or the intellectual capacity to overcome the rigors of NS. Are you freaking kidding me???
    So because a single mom of 3 kids that has trouble finding daycare (like I see on this board at least once a week) has a hard time during pre-reqs she shouldn't be allowed the opportunity to advance? I think you have your priorities a bit backwards, how does it not make you feel good inside to know that folks that may not have the traditional chance of "All A's and your in" are able to succeed? Maybe it's just my naivete, but I enjoy reading people's stories of overcoming their hardships to make it in NS.

    And another thing, I know for a fact you wouldn't have posted a thing about the lottery system if you had gotten in the first time. So don't try and act like a martyr about how its so unfair for everyone else when deep down you only care about yourself.
    No you do not know that for a fact. There is a very large list of top level students just waiting to get in. And some of them are very close friends. Did you happen to miss the posting of the Bee article? This issue is not going away. You mention overcoming hardships, well there Focker, it is very easy to overcome when the muckered down standards require you to only jump two inches. As for your your personal insult in the last
    paragraph, I will contribute that to your youth and your tendacy towards rashness. You have much to learn young one.

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    this made front page local in the sunday edition of our local paper today.

    the modesto junior college nursing school students decry planned lottery

    by michelle hatfield
    bee staff writer</b>

    last updated: january 21, 2007, 10:24:40 am pst

    evergreen valley college's 90 percent passing rate on the national nursing exam wasn't good enough for richettia walker.
    instead, she came to modesto junior college.
    "i knew it had an excellent nursing program and that the pass rate is high," she said. "i thought 'the curriculum has to be good' and it actually is."
    but nursing students fear such superb programs are compromised because colleges are moving to lottery systems to determine who gets admitted.
    with more demand for classes than colleges have room for, some have started determining who gets in with a random drawing. using a lottery over a ranking system is meant to increase the diversity of nursing students, but some students feel that puts patient health at risk when top students are denied.
    officials need a way to limit the number of applicants because colleges across the state and nation do not have enough room for everyone.
    walker transferred to mjc from san jose's evergreen campus three years ago-grabbing one of 75 highly coveted spots that open up each semester.
    some california colleges are turning away 80 percent of would-be nurses. the state average is 40 percent, according to californians for patient care, a nonprofit group advocating health care reform.
    mjc denied 44 percent of qualified applicants last semester, and has 119 students on its waiting list.
    "i worked really hard and i hate to see the gimme attitude (of entitlement)," said andriana woodward, an mjc nursing graduate. "i see students now getting in who couldn't get in years ago under the ranking program. it's rewarding mediocrity. it's not rewarding the people who worked their butts off."
    woodward works in the neurocritical ward at doctors medical center.
    mjc's old system ranked students based on their college grade-pointaveragefrom prerequisite classes, english classes, and core biology classes. points would be subtracted for any biology classes that needed to be repeated.
    students need to meet a benchmark based on the equation to even qualify for the program.
    the formula includes the most effective measures in predicting completion of nursing programs, according to a 2002 study by the center for student success.
    the average grade-point average of incoming nursing students for mjc's spring semester is 3.23.
    pushing for a switch
    the california community college chancellor's office is pushing for a switch to the lottery, said bonnie costello, director of mjc's nursing program and a veteran nurse. officials at the state chancellor's office could not be reached for comment last week.
    "the lottery is nondiscriminatory once you qualify (for the program)," costello said. "some argued that some people were getting disproportionate access without the lottery."
    starting last semester, mjc uses a computer that randomly generates numbers for each student. people who have applied more than once and landed on the waiting list will have their names submitted multiple times to increase their chances, cos-tello said.
    while walker said she was fortunate to get into mjc's nursing program before the lottery system, she doesn't think it's accurate to base a person's knowledge on a letter grade.
    woodward said a combination of ranking and lottery systems makes the most sense for people who might be bad at taking tests.
    course load is rigorous
    if unqualified people get into the nursing program, the rigorous course load and internship should weed them out.
    "nurses are nurturing people, but the faculty have to be hard-edged. they can't let incompe-tency pass," costello said.
    instructors are top-notch and know how to tutor students, walker said. they also know when to hold someone back.
    but those students who drop out take away seats from more deserving students, some argue.
    "my concern is eventually they'll have to lower their standards," woodward said. "if students are not doing well in the prerequisites, they won't do well in the program."
    mjc's limited classroom and lab space restricts the number of students admitted, costello said. when the new allied health facility is eventually built with part of $326 million in measure e funding, officials hope to expand the number of seats to 100 each semester.
    enrollment also is limited to the number of spots available for students to complete their clinical internships at participating hospitals and doctors' offices, costello said.
    space limitations hamper state and college efforts to fill nursing spots-14,000 vacancies alone for registered nurses statewide.
    the empty slots translate into 35 vacancies in each california hospital, according to californians for patient care.
    schools trying to fill shortage
    mjc's nursing program is among many at colleges across the state that tries to pump out qualified nurses to fill the nursing shortage. programs also are available at california state university,stanislaus,columbia college and the university of phoenix.
    "most come in because they want to make a difference and nursing is a way to make a difference," costello said.
    meanwhile, walker continues her learn-by-doing experience. she works a 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. shift as a nursing student at memorial medical center once a week.
    she wants to work in critical care, a speciality that keeps her busy and constantly in motion. the position also sees patients who need lots of care.
    when reflecting on why she loves nursing, walker recalled the family of a patient who thanked her for her care and bedside manner.
    "that made me feel real good, made me feel i'm in the right field," walker said. "everyday i feel like i'm there for a reason." bee staff writer michelle hatfield can be reached at 578-2339 or

    program made front page local news in the sunday edition of the modesto bee. here is the article.

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    Quote from FockerInTraining
    What does IQ have to do with what I am talking about? Are only folks with a high IQ allowed in nursing? Don't really see where you're going with this one.

    You Know Focker,

    I have stayed away from this topic for weeks now. However because of your logic expressed in the last posting I am going to make an exception. The C average students drop like flies the first semester. Why? Because they either lack the excellent study habits needed or the intellectual capacity to overcome the rigors of the nursing program. Do you doubt
    what I am saying? If you do, maybe you should find out. And when you do, please ask more than just the one person you know who has been through the program.

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    Quote from studentmalenurse
    What i do get is that i dont use terms that the present administration likes to popularize. (criminal activity , terrorist)

    Criminal activity ? Thats to funny . But if we were to really use that concept then basically all Americans are criminals, because basically the settlers came here illegaly , stole the land illegaly , killed the natives illegaly, stole slaves illegaly, So basically , we all just need to pack our bags and go because where all criminals.
    Now with this comment, you told us everything about your beliefs that we need to know. The posters in this thread were discussing a very real problem and then you chose to bring in this Aztlan argument. You just lost all respect in my eyes.

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    Quote from lizz
    Believe me Tim, I agree with you totally. There is no question that you are totally right about this. You have every right to feel the way you do. I am on your side, but Focker has a point in one sense.

    If you're expecting nursing school to be fair, it just isn't. The unfairness is not going to stop here. You are going to see many unfair things as you go through the program. They are the gatekeepers and they can pretty much do what they want.

    Probably the most unfair thing I dealt with was the teachers testing us on material they never gave us. It drove me absolutely crazy.

    Finally, I realized that I had to quit spending time and energy complaining and trying to fight it by challenging test questions, etc., and spend more of my energy figuring out how to beat the teachers at the their own game.

    So I started to study NCLEX guides in addition to the books, lecture and everything else to try to fill in the gaps, and it helped me a lot. I also figured out that I should always get notes from the previous class since, inevitably, teachers would forget to tell us things they told other classes but, nevertheless, would show up on test questions.

    In hindsight, I realized that if I had done all of this a lot sooner, instead of worrying about how unfair it all was, I would have been much better off.

    Again, I am not dismissing your arguments or how you feel. I totally sympathize with what's happened to you here. But, sometimes it's just better to accept the unfairness of the situation, especially if you can't change it, and deal with it the best that you can.

    If I may make a suggestion here: the best thing you can do right now is start studying with the free time you have because you won't have much free time once school starts. If you can, get the syllabus for the program either from the school itself or your friend who's starting now.

    You mentioned you're having some trouble talking with your friend right now because they're starting before you are but ... if you can set aside your personal feelings ... you might realize that having a friend in the class before you can also be a tremendous advantage.

    I had a friend who started before me, and she was a lifesaver. She always told me what to expect from different teachers, how to study, what kinds of test questions to expect ... all kinds of pointers ... which helped me tremendously because she had already been through it. She also gave me notes from her classes which was enormously helpful.

    I guess what I'm saying is: try to take advantage of an otherwise bad situation. You now have an opportunity to get a head start and that can give you an enormous advantage down the line.


    Thank You, You make a lot of sense.


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    Thanks for the info in re LA college.

    And the rest of you are right. The milk is spillt, it is spoiled, it is time to move on. I will let someone else clean up the mess. I am done talking about this.

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    Quote from FockerInTraining
    Hello Tim,

    I am a male student also looking to get into the nursing program at MJC. I really do not mean to offend but, my question is why are you trying to change something that has been in place for a long time? You don't have to apply at MJC. I am wondering where did you apply to the first time that changed their selection process on you? Because I know for a fact that MJC has had the lottery for quite a few years now, my wife is an RN and graduated from MJC almost a year ago and she had to go through the lottery as well. Just wondering why make a big deal out of something that is not worth making a big deal over. I really respect you for the job you are trying to pursue, but there are plenty of other places that don't have a lottery system, but they also have a few years on the wait list as well, so just take what you can get is all Im saying.

    OH and Focker

    I took the time to read your other postings. One of the basic qualities that a nurse should have are sense of compassion and tact. You were a little more tactful in your posting to me, but I think you still have room for improvement. Good Luck to you.

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    I had to read your post over and I am glad I did. The timeframe you talk about them changing the selection process is just about right. I have been there for a little over three years and it was sometime in my second semester that it changed. Please understand That it took me longer because I was not always able to attend full time due to the sickness of my close friend and roomate. I had already comimtted myself at the time and with my money situation it was immpossible to "Just Move" as you put it. If I was the only one I had to think about, I would sought a different school. Sometimes your choices are very limited. UNderstand I do think this is a big deal. Anytime you put a honors student on equal basis with someone who has just squeaked by with a 75% in competition for a place in a nursing school, that is to someone like me a very big deal. And to make matters worse, this is a private lottery without any public oversight. You might disagree with how I feel about it, but I do find this system unfair. Merit should be what counts and merit only.

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    it seems i am not the only one in modesto that is unhappy with this selection process. following is a letter to the editor of our local paper. i believe i know this girl. she is very capable and would be asset to any nursing staff.

    last updated: december 14, 2006, 05:15:26 am pst
    [font=times]i find it ridiculous that a large institute such as modesto junior college only offers one nursing class a semester.
    [font=times]i am an emergency room technician trying to become a nurse. for the fall semester, i was 44th on the waiting list; others
    [font=times]who have been waiting longer were behind me. some, like me, teach nursing students how to do their jobs. now i am
    [font=times]84th on the waiting list. with more than six years experience in the medical field, i cannot get into the program.
    [font=times]there are shortages in the nursing field and not very many deserving people can get in. at some schools, unless you live
    [font=times]in their community you are told not to apply. how fair is that? we need more classes, not fewer.
    [font=times]lara kelly[font=times]

    i was wondering if there are any groups fighting this selection process or is this a david vs goliath type of scenario? it just seems like some group somewhere should be doing something! if any one knows of such a group, please let me know.

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    Quote from turbohound
    Tim, nothing sucks more than the lottery system for the reasons that you described. But I think you've been misinformed about the Chancellor's Model. It isn't lottery based, it's grade based. The only inputs the school can vary are the pre-req courses and the cut score. I have a copy of the statistical model used to compute the applicant's score. It's also posted on San Joaquim Delta College's RN website at Delta College Health Sciences: ADN Program (on the left under "Acceptance Formula"). Delta was one of the test sites selected for early adoption of the model. I have decent grades (3.7 pre-reqs, 3.4 overall), and I got in for spring '07 with an 86. With your grades, you should end up with an even higher score (90+). And starting in fall 2007, any California Community College which accepts money from the state has to use the Model for its Nursing program. So next fall you'll be in. In the mean time, call up the school and find out where you are on the alternate list. You could be next in line for a call from admissions. Whether its spring or next fall you're almost there.
    Well i have to disagree with you. The chancellor;s model is only grade based as far as the cut score, at least that's how it is being presented at MJC.Some People with a score of 75 got in this semester. They had only applied in the fall for their first time. Now Stockton's system is grade based.If my transportation was not so bad I would have applied their also. And I am well aware of it. I used their formula one night to compute my own raw score.
    What is being presented at MJC is not what is presented on SJDC's web site. However I am interested on why you believe it is the same.

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    Quote from lizz
    Why would you be sacrificing pride? To me, at least, it was a matter of pride to fight the system and try to make my grades count for something, whether it ultimately made any difference or not. I didn't work for that 4.0 GPA for nothing and, I let them know that.

    You know Lizz, you are 100% right. It really is a matter of principle. And our grades should count for something. I need to re-think my thought process from time to time.


    I am curious to hear your views on the question I asked Zash. How do you feel working side by side with those in Nursing school who are just passing? Do you feel that they will make a good nurse, ect. ?

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    I am not sure of this, but is Loma Linda a teaching Hospital? If it is, this might be another option.

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    I am curious. Some of those who are just passing concern me. That is more than some are In my humble opinion could be a danger to the pt's. Now I also realize that some who have achieved a high level of academic excellance can also be a danger. I have very mixed feelings on this subject. Can you tell me your thoughts on this subject?

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    Quote from lizz
    Can't argue with you there. For me it wasn't a matter of trust or distrust. I'm just a pragmatist. If my grades weren't going to count, I was going to do as much as I could to make them count by bringing it to their attention.

    And I won't lie ... I was trying to subtly grease the wheels of the system in my favor. Did it work? I have no idea.

    I was kinda hoping that since I did have a 4.0 GPA and they were, at least, trying to go to a grade based system (even though they failed in that endeavor) that they might look upon my application favorably anyway.

    But, IMHO, they still needed to know who I was instead of being some name in a stack of papers. And, I did tell the director several times (albeit politely) I thought it was unfair that my grades meant nothing.

    Again, I have no idea if it helped me or not. They certainly never said anything, nor did I even get a hint as to whether it was going to make any difference.

    Nevertheless, I just couldn't sit around and wait for some lottery to determine my fate. Trying to stand out did make me feel better ... if nothing else ... because I at least felt like I was doing something about it.

    I am proud person Lizz. And in a very real sense I am from the old school. An insructor of mine said to many of us one time "I do not grade on a curve, because in real life your are in competition with your peers". I believe that this is the way it should be. I do see some value to taking the steps you have mentioned, however I feel that at least for myself that I would being sacrificing a measure of my own pride to do so.