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RN in Medical School -Should I keep this to myself?

Nurses   (2,955 Views | 40 Replies)

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Hi All,

I'm a pediatric RN that has just recently been accepted to Medical School and will be matriculating in the Fall of 2020. It has taken me several years to do this as I've been working part time and taking classes. All of the nurses that I work with have been incredibly supportive during this time, and have even gone out of their way to switch shifts with me to make sure that I was able to make it to last minute interviews. 

At one of the interviews last week, the physician that interviewed me told me that my being a nurse is something I should never tell to the nurses on the wards during rotations and in residency because it would not go over well and would hinder me as a student. I was actually surprised by that sentiment because that is not what I have experienced thus far at all! I feel like it would be a good bonding moment between myself and the nurses because I've been there and in essence I feel it will make my residency go more smoothly because having been a nurse, I know exactly what orders the nurses (as well as the interdisciplinary team in general) will want.

From nurse to nurse, what are your thoughts on this? Keep it to myself, or not?

 

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nursej22 has 30 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in med/surg,CV.

1 Follower; 1,356 Posts; 34,532 Profile Views

Unless that physician was also a nurse, I would take this advice with a grain of salt.

On the other hand, I would be tactful on relating this information, as not everyone will be as accepting. 

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LibraSunCNM has 10 years experience as a MSN and specializes in OB.

1,374 Posts; 25,657 Profile Views

I wouldn't necessarily bust into the unit on your first day and start singing to anyone who will listen that you are an RN, but I see no reason to actually keep it a secret.  News will probably travel fast, honestly, since nurse-MDs are not super common, so you probably won't need to tell anyone after very long.

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beachbabe86 specializes in Oceanfront Living.

64 Posts; 254 Profile Views

I would keep it to myself.  For some strange reason, not everyone is happy to see nurses succeed.

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Pixie.RN has 12 years experience as a MSN, RN, EMT-P and specializes in EMS, ED, Trauma, CNE, CEN, CPEN, TCRN.

8 Followers; 32 Articles; 13,339 Posts; 130,047 Profile Views

It could go two ways — either you will bond, or they will be like "wth, being a nurse wasn't good enough for you? You think you're better than us now?" So learn to read the room — that is an essential skill! 

I deployed with a general surgeon (who has gone on into the vascular specialty) who was an ICU nurse before med school. He was awesome. I personally love it when people realize their dreams. Not everyone feels the same. 

A good friend of mine was a trauma ER/ICU nurse and is now in his third year of med school. I don't think he tells a lot of people about his background because during med school, it really doesn't come up much. Might be different during residency. 

Anyway, congrats! When you get into your program and you really understand what "drinking from a firehose" means and you wonder what the heck you got into and why, just hang in there — it will be worth it! 

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Boomer MS, RN has 17 years experience and specializes in Med Surg/ICU/Psych/Emergency/CEN/retired.

510 Posts; 4,629 Profile Views

I feel it would depend on how you treat the nurses and relate to them. In my opinion, that could make all the difference. If the nurses are treated with respect, it could be a win-win. Having been a nurse, you may have a bit of an advantage. Remember how you wanted to feel part of the team, not an underling or handmaiden. People's reactions to your past career will vary. I don't see any advantage not to share if you feel comfortable. Congrats, good luck and best wishes to you.

Edited by Boomer MS, RN
added content

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Sour Lemon has 9 years experience.

3 Followers; 4,313 Posts; 31,847 Profile Views

1 hour ago, LibraSunCNM said:

I wouldn't necessarily bust into the unit on your first day and start singing to anyone who will listen that you are an RN, but I see no reason to actually keep it a secret.  News will probably travel fast, honestly, since nurse-MDs are not super common, so you probably won't need to tell anyone after very long.

Agree, 100%. I don't see it as an issue. If it comes up, fine. If it doesn't, that's fine too.

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HiddencatBSN is a BSN and specializes in Peds ED.

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Every MD I’ve ever worked with who was a nurse first has been amazing. I think about how frustrating it can be to manage interns in those first months and how much easier that would be with ones who have RN experience and who have some perspective about what patient care looks like from our side.

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12 Followers; 3,965 Posts; 30,073 Profile Views

Congrats!

 

8 hours ago, bent1993 said:

At one of the interviews last week, the physician that interviewed me told me that my being a nurse is something I should never tell to the nurses on the wards during rotations and in residency because it would not go over well and would hinder me as a student.

Eh...that "never" is how you know it was more snotty/elitist than useful advice. 😉

Just use discretion. Neither look for opportunities to share, nor withhold your background when sharing it would be relevant or genuinely build a bridge in some way.

Best of luck!

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K+MgSO4 has 12 years experience as a BSN and specializes in Surgical, quality,management.

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You will probably get "outed" during your placements.  A doctor  who was a nurse prior outed herself by the way she repositioned a patient in bed after taking an ABG.  Another got busted by assisting with positioning of a hoist sling on a patient that had fallen.  As a student being able to do that is pretty unique. 

 

Mind you this is how I find out my student nurses and graduate nurses are EN or PCW prior.  That and the ability to multitask very early.

 

PS congratulations on getting in to med school. 

Edited by K+MgSO4

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CharleeFoxtrot has 7 years experience as a ADN, RN.

605 Posts; 7,268 Profile Views

8 hours ago, Sour Lemon said:

Agree, 100%. I don't see it as an issue. If it comes up, fine. If it doesn't, that's fine too.

That's my thinking as well. Congratulations and best of luck OP!

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Jedrnurse has 25 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in school nurse.

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Don't necessarily tell them that you're a nurse, but prove in actions and demeanor that you respect them and their profession.

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