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Question; orientation went great except...

Bjarte Bjarte (New) New

So first let me say that I debated posting this in the male nursing study section but figured that I would prefer the opinions of both men and women (admins please move if it is in the wrong section). So the issue:

I had nursing school orientation today and it went great except for one thing. We received our uniform jackets and my large sized jacket's sleeve only reached to mid-forearm on me (I'm 6'3" with long arms and broad shoulders). Needless to say this puzzled me as a men's large should definitely reach further. The buttons were also on my left side which, and correct me if I am wrong ladies, is the style of a women's jacket. Obviously I thought this was an error since I have a unisex name and I called the uniform store that embroiders our jackets. They said that the school specifically requires Cherokee brand Navy cardigan style 4301 jackets for all nursing students. I then went back to the school and they confirmed that that is the only option for all nursing students for uniformity reasons. Fair enough I thought until I googled Cherokee cardigan jacket style 4301 and all of the results said women's jacket; not unisex but women's. Now I don't really care what sex/color/ the jacket is or whether it is technically a women's jacket, I care that it does not fit me and the other sizes are either too short (above my belt line) or too long with the sleeves still above my wrist. I then decided that I shouldn't trust google and called Cherokee directly. They confirmed that style 4301 is 100% a women's jacket not unisex and that their male equivalent is style 4350. Why has this not been an issue I wondered. The school of nursing officials told me that no men have had any major issues with their's as most students just pushed their sleeves up as well. Unfortunately I cannot do this as I have two full sleeves of tattoos; classic catch 22. I will happily cover but my women's jacket sleeves are too short. So basically my questions are; 1) can my school require me to wear a women's jacket (not unisex) if it does not fit me in a medium, large, or extra large; and 2) If yes, for uniformity, why would they require a women's jacket for all yet allow me to wear men's scrubs that are different than women's obviously?

I have approached the school already (tactfully because I don't want to **** off the people that will be grading me for the next two years) and their attitude was very unbudging. Can they do this? Any help, advice, and/or opinions would be appreciated greatly. Thanks.

LadyFree28, BSN, RN

Specializes in Pediatrics, Rehab, Trauma. Has 10 years experience.

Can you possibly get the men's jacket and have someone embroider the school patch or logo on it?

I would wear the jacket into the school office and just "double check" that is how they wanted me to look at clinical. sometimes it takes show and tell before it sinks in.

Thanks for the quick responses. I have offer other men's jackets as solutions and they shot that down really quick. I think it may come down to me having to wear it for them to see but again I don't want to **** anyone off. Is this even right? I fully support equal treatment for all races, genders, sexes, religions, etc. but this seems program is starting to show signs everywhere that nursing is a women's profession (which I do not agree with). The dress code even said that I had to wear white hose haha. I'm starting to wonder if this were a business school and they required all students to wear men's suits if this would "fly". I know that is a ridiculous example but you hopefully get the point.

When you say you approached the school does that include your Dean of Nursing? I know you don't want to make anyone mad but I feel that you should go up the chain of command until this is resolved. A man having to wear a woman's jacket is a little ridiculous. I wouldn't appreciate having to wear an oversized men's jacket around.

If you don't want to ruffle anyone's feathers maybe the next best solution would be to wear a long sleeve top that matches the color of your scrub top. If you are allowed to do this. I agree that this situation is unfortunate and I hope it gets resolved for you soon. I am sorry you are experiencing this.

Yes I approached my professor first and it is currently going up the chain of command to the Dean of nursing. The professor was 100% against me getting another jacket but I hope the Dean of nursing shares your rationale. I'll update when I hear something back. Hopefully it doesn't take to long because I have to get it embroidered again and a patch sewn on (great another $45).

meanmaryjean, DNP, RN

Specializes in NICU, ICU, PICU, Academia. Has 40 years experience.

PLEASE wear the white stockings when you meet with the Dean. And post pics! :)


Specializes in hospice.

That this is occurring in 2014 is absolutely ridiculous. Every school should have a men's uniform and a women's uniform. If my kids' elementary and prep schools can figure that out, why can't a nursing school?


Specializes in Forensic Psych. Has 2 years experience.

That this is occurring in 2014 is absolutely ridiculous. Every school should have a men's uniform and a women's uniform. If my kids' elementary and prep schools can figure that out, why can't a nursing school?

I agree. If a school can't be bothered to supply uniforms that are appropriate for EVERYone, they need to let students purchase their own within parameters. Totally unprofessional to attempt to have men wear women's uniforms.

NurseGirl525, ASN, RN

Specializes in ICU.

I'm thinking that the professor doesn't quite understand what you are asking. I would either just buy it and wear it, because I doubt anyone w

NurseGirl525, ASN, RN

Specializes in ICU.

I'm thinking that the professor doesn't quite understand what you are asking. I would either just buy it and wear it, because I doubt anyone would notice or speak to the dean. That is crazy.

I agree that they probably dont understand how poorly fitting it is for you. Wear it to show them! They surely dont want one of their students to show up for clinical looking absolutely ridiculous in wrong sized scrubs.

SopranoKris, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 6 years experience.

Common sense needs to prevail here. I can't believe they aren't bending on it. Wear the jacket and say "is this how you want me to look?" and then show them the male equivalent jacket.


Specializes in MICU.

you made me smile with that comment!!!


Specializes in Cardiac Stepdown, PCU.

I agree with some of the others. I would simply get the men's jacket, have it embroidered or patched, and wear that one. I wouldn't say anything to anyone. Are there other men in your program? What do they think? I also agree on putting it on, walking up to your professor, showing them the issue and go "What do you want me to do about it?" and if they say roll the sleeves up, do so and go "what about that?" when your tattoos show.

As a last resort, is it possible you can purchase a large size with sleeves that will fit you, and simply have it tailored so the rest of it will fit a bit nicer and more comfortably?

This is ridiculous. You should not be made to wear a women's jacket- however I disagree with those that said just buy the men's jacket and wear it. Since you already brought it to the attention of the school and they said not to do that.

I am hoping/betting the Dean will have common sense and be reasonable.

You might be smart to get a few other guys to take up the cause with you.


Specializes in ER, ICU, Education. Has 15 years experience.

I would be very leery of a school with policies that rigid. As a professor, I would be embarrassed to have colleagues with so little common sense who value policies over people. This is as ludicrous as forcing a 300lb student into wearing scrubs meant for a 140lb student. Where is the concern for student dignity? There are times to be rigid (safety issues), and times where you must recognize that rules may have legitimate exceptions. If the school does not budge, OP, realize what they are communicating to you and go into this with eyes wide open.

classicdame, MSN, EdD

Specializes in Hospital Education Coordinator.

if everyone has to wear a unisex outfit why not make the females wear the men's??? I like wearing men's hoodies because they are roomier under the arms and I feel less constricted. Sounds like someone is trying to be very legalistic. However, do not make enemies over this. In the long run, it is trivial.