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Unrealistic nursing students

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by dnsonthego dnsonthego (New Member) New Member

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StJohnRiver has 5 years experience and specializes in Hospice, Telemetry.

1,207 Visitors; 25 Posts

I see the influx of second-career RNs as very positive for the profession, and not just because I am one of them. My nursing school class was filled with people who had quit decent jobs to pursue nursing. They had not "failed" at their other profession, they left for a variety of reasons, but mostly because they felt unfullfilled in some way at their old jobs. There were engineers, accountants, teachers, salesmen and women. Most, including me, knew they would be taking a pay cut, but were willing to do that. The result was a nursing school class filled with educated, motivated, mature individuals who will step into their new jobs with a lot of life and work experiences that will help them and their patients. I see the same in the coworkers in my novice nurse program. Only a couple are right out of school. The others have had other jobs and degrees in other subjects. I find myself challenged to keep up with them. I don't see any negatives in this. I think the patients will be the beneficiaries.

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Rose_Queen is a BSN, MSN, RN and specializes in OR, education.

4 Followers; 4 Articles; 103,193 Visitors; 8,685 Posts

I honestly do not understand why other nurses have a problem with nurses who want to step away from the bedside. It's perfectly okay to leave the bedside (which other nurses feel like it's a betrayal to the profession) if you no longer enjoy it so that you can create room for others who want to be there.

What many current nurses have already experienced is nurses who never want to get their hands dirty at the bedside; they only want to get into the "glamorous" and "well-paying" jobs. How many nurses out there have tried to be a preceptor and mentor to these types of nurses only to deal with the attitude of "I don't need to know all this cause in a year I'll be in CRNA/NP school"?

Unfortunately, I see many more like the graduates that the OP encountered than the ones that that Don describes. There are smatterings of those who really want to be a bedside nurse but I find a greater number interested at the bedside as a stepping stone to the "big paying" jobs.

We even see here at AN those who seek "easy jobs", jobs without patient contact, seeking the ICU just to move on to the real paying job of CRNA, and those who assume that just because they possess a BSN the world is at their feet... which is just simply not the case.

The job market is many parts of the US is dismal for many new grads with hospitals unwilling to hire and train a new grad only to have them leave after that precious year, leaving the facility once again without trained staff, Frustrating and expensive.

I think there are nursing schools out there that are not properly preparing these new nurses for the workforce nor the reality of what the market presently dictates.

THIS!!! a million times!

I find these kind of sneering sentiments to be more "unrealistic" than a student working their butt off to meet CRNA requirements. There is nothing dishonorable about wanting to be involved in healthcare outside of bedside nursing. One of the best parts of this profession is its broad range, where one can utilize their skills in so many different capacities. Nursing is a great and rewarding job, but it's a job nonetheless, and looking down your nose at someone with different motivations for this job seems odd to me. In fact, I regularly see those warm, fuzzy people who dream of being a bedside nurse drop out when they realize reality is a 6:1 patient to nurse ratio, and there is little time for the care/comfort they dreamed of giving. The ones who endure? Those heathens who set high professional goals and intend to eventually move on from bedside nursing. For a forum where we all rant and rave about how ridiculous this profession can be, I'm surprised at the attitudes toward those who perhaps want to move beyond it someday.

Many nursing students I've worked with are incredibly unrealistic. They think they'll walk out of their ADN program into a nice, cushy ICU job where they'll never have to get their hands dirty. Exactly one year later, they'll be nurse anesthetist students. That's the unrealistic part. Those who come in wanting to learn, wanting to do the work, but do have that long-term goal just have a different attitude about a bedside job. There's nothing wrong with wanting to progress to advanced practice roles; it's the attitude of "I'm just here because I can't go to CRNA/NP school without it".

I, too am meeting new grads who didn't succeed at their first choice profession so went for a nursing degree as a "quick fix" or a stepping stone to NP, CRNA or hospital management. Many, if not most of them truly believe they'll never have to get their hands dirty at the bedside. That seems to be a failure on the part of the new grad to research what the choice of profession actually entails as well as a failure on the part of the nursing schools to educate on the role of the nurse.

Students/potential students should research the job outlook of the profession they are thinking of joining. Yes, it can change between admission and graduation, but for most at least they'll have some knowledge. Nursing schools do seem to be lacking on educating about the role of the nurse; many seem only to care about getting students to pass NCLEX. It's no wonder hospitals are requiring experience to apply for positions- new grads still need to learn how to be nurses!

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8,698 Visitors; 784 Posts

Some of the statements in this thread make my blood boil. I am a second degree nurse (formerly a teacher), who had a very successful career prior to deciding to go back to nursing school. I repeat, some of us did not go to nursing school because we couldn't find work in our initial chosen fields-contrary to public opinion or what is being reported as truth on this thread.

Thinking back on my cohort, we had extremely successful professionals who decided because of personal reasons (sick children/parents) that they wanted to be nurses because of the stellar care their families received by nurses. I completed a ABSN degree and found a job shortly after graduating in a NICU. No,I wasn't disillusioned and thought I would get an ICU position immediately after nursing school, but I worked my tail off, earned good grades, became a nurse tech, was heavily involved in my school and landed a pretty good preceptorship.

What I choose to do with my money, is up to me! Suggesting that second degree students are taking out excessive amounts of loans to fund their education is false in many many cases.There is a cap on how much undergraduate student loans one can receive so people can't take out unlimited amounts of loans-- a concept I believe is fair.

People equating the influx of nurses to second degree graduates is completely absurd. So is suggesting that second degree students are the only ones that are looking at a staff RN position as a stepping stone. Most GNs use staff nursing positions as a stepping stone in one way or another, moving to another speciality, to management, leadership, NP roles, etc. This is not uncommon for any GN/RN. To the OP maybe the person who suggested that some day they would want to merge their degrees as a hospital attorney was simply suggesting that in the future that would be something of interest to them. Maybe they were not assuming that upon graduating with a BSN that a hospital would actually deem them qualified to be a hospital attorney. I know that I merge my two careers all the time-- I am constantly teaching at my job which fulfills me...maybe the lawyer turned nurse wants to do the same? Who are we to judge?

I agree! I'm a 2nd degree nursing student as well. I wouldn't have made a good nurse at 18 and I'm glad I did what I did before being able to return to school for nursing. I have skills and knowledge that will help me be all that better now.

I am very successful in my current life, but I've wanted to be a nurse for many years now and I finally have the opportunity to do so. yes, I know it will be hard but that doesn't mean I'm any less of a personf or doing it this way

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TU RN has 5 years experience and specializes in ICU, PCU.

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My first career is nursing, I am a BSN, and I do plan on working the bedside until I'm competitive enough for further education.

Do I want to learn how to be a bedside nurse? Yes.

Do I want to work bedside until my back is shot? No.

Would I like to eventually work regular 8 hour shifts with a less physically demanding work load and more pay?

Yes.

Do I want to spend 30 years of my life working 3 12s sweating over 350lb incontinent completes with wounds on contact precautions?

Nah.

Hypothetically if I was a nurse who spent 30 years at the bedside until I retired or moved on due to physical exhaustion/disability, then was put into a position of mentoring students who have the ambition and means to move on from bedside after a couple years - I'd probably be forced through a number of emotions. Envy and bitterness come to mind. I wonder how much of this hypothetical scenario is at play with the OP...

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Emergent has 25 years experience.

7 Followers; 2 Articles; 64,802 Visitors; 2,803 Posts

But if your daughter is the type who pays close attention to detail, is a very meticulous person, logical and methodical etc etc maybe she's already a future CRNA....

That describes her to a T. Her plan is to get her BSN, get a job in Spokane (Where the only CRNA program is in Washington), then work, get experience, save money, and work on advancing.

She interviewed a CRNA for her career project last year. She is currently trying to set up a shadowing with that same fellow. She is a senior in High School and a straight A student, very goal oriented.

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2 Articles; 14,051 Visitors; 11,114 Posts

A few random observations:

 

1) I hope to heck the OP gives feedback about the inappropriate behavior of some of the visiting students to their faculty. It seems unfortunate that people about to graduate from a college program (second degree or not) need to be told how to behave before they attend such a program -- turn off your phones, do your homework about what's appropriate-- but hey, I guess it has to be done.

 

2) The faculty, too, have likely been away from bedside nursing for awhile, and the realities of the job market may not have touched them.

 

3) Somebody lumped CRNA, NP, and legal nursing together. While all require some RN experience, it is still possible to get into a NP program as a comparatively new nurse. CRNA, not so much at all. And LNC, no way at all. Attorneys want people who already know a lot about nursing, medicine, hospitals/other facilities, charting, standards of care and practice, and the like-- they do not want to pay you good money to acquire those as part of on-the-job training. So no, new grads, even those with previous law degrees, will find a rude awakening if they think they can waltz into LNC jobs without a lot more nursing experience.

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aabbccdd has 1 years experience.

2,228 Visitors; 28 Posts

I find the comments of the original poster somewhat moralistic and righteous. People go into professions, such as nursing, for many reasons and there is nothing wrong to try to combine previous education or experience with your new profession. The condescending attitude of the OP and of some of the commentators that apparently only bedside nurses are "real" nurses or that only working 12-14 hour shifts are proof of compassion and commitment to nursing is unhelpful and perpetuating stereotypes about nurses and nursing that we should work hard to overcome.

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Ruby Vee has 40 years experience as a BSN and specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching.

11 Followers; 65 Articles; 170,450 Visitors; 13,938 Posts

I also don't see the problem with second career nurses wanting to have a position in leadership. They are obviously aiming high and there is nothing wrong with that considering they have spent their time and money to make themselves marketable. I once had a manager with an MBA who had an ADN because that opened doors for her to be an Executive officer in healthcare settings (she never worked a day as a nurse). A former lawyer with a nursing background will be a better pick for hospital attorney that just a regular lawyer.

I honestly do not understand why other nurses have a problem with nurses who want to step away from the bedside. It's perfectly okay to leave the bedside (which other nurses feel like it's a betrayal to the profession) if you no longer enjoy it so that you can create room for others who want to be there.

.

Nursing can be back breaking, and not many nurses can work at the bedside for their entire career. Someone once told me the average age of a bedside nurse is 48 years old. As someone put it, there are so many flavors to nursing. Some have less or no poop, no patient contact, etc. Those positions need to be filled by someone with a nursing degree. If someone chooses to work in those jobs, why not. I have repetatively said over the years that I do not want to work in psych. There is nothing wrong with a having a preferance about an area of work where you feel you can give your best and have high job satisfaction.

Like many of us Crusty Old Bats, I'm sure, I have no problem with nurses who want to step away from the bedside in order to become leaders in nursing. The difficulty I have is with those who want to assume positions of leadership in nursing without ever having BEEN at the bedside.

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33,583 Visitors; 4,412 Posts

OK everybody.

The OP is just following her established thread pattern. If you look at her history over the years (yes years) she pops up with this same "Gee, golly, why?" thread, over and over. Usually I and casts of thousands prove her back into hiding, but hey. She's up and posted the same thread again. The encounter with 2nd career/degree students always a bit different, for flavor, I suppose.

Me thinks the fear is competition. Now, OP maybe you need another degree?

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Ruby Vee has 40 years experience as a BSN and specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching.

11 Followers; 65 Articles; 170,450 Visitors; 13,938 Posts

Mark my words. The day will come when hospitals will miss the second career RN who came to nursing from a factory job, enlisted military service, farming, etc. and where very grateful to have a steady job inside out of the weather. Nurse who spend many years at the bedside and because of that developed superb assessment and critical thinking skills. Nurse whose ambition was to prove great care for 8 or 12 hours then take their pay check back to their family.

My observation is that nursing units are getting younger with fewer and fewer of the kind of nurse who would spend a whole career at the bedside and so were resources for less experienced nurses.

Not everybody can be a manager or APN. We need highly experienced nurses who want to stay at the bedside for a long time.

Those nurses, more often than not came to nursing through their local community college ADN programs.

I suspect that the OP's intent was not to express lack of gratitude for second career nurses who spend many years at the bedside, whose ambition is to provide great care for their patients and then to take their paycheck home to their family. As I read it, the OP had a problem with second and third career nurses who had never been able to succeed at ANY career and have no intention of spending any time at the bedside. As a Crusty Old Bat, I too have a problem with nurses who want to immediately step into positions of nursing leadership immediately from nursing school, without ever having NEARED the bedside.

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Ruby Vee has 40 years experience as a BSN and specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching.

11 Followers; 65 Articles; 170,450 Visitors; 13,938 Posts

I agree. the whole texting thing is rude, I understand that. But ambition should not be frowned upon. I felt it was unnecessary for the OP to judge those people on that aspect of their behavior. People go into nursing for different reasons - some people want a career change, some people want the higher income, some people actually have always wanted to go to nursing school but for whatever reason never had that opportunity and now they're finally pursuing it, etc. Asking about vacancies is not unprofessional; those people saw an opportunity to get feedback from people who may have the information that they inquired about. It's their livelihood we're talking about, of course they'll be hungry for any bit of advantage.

Again, I think the OP's problem is with nursing students who expect to immediately attain a leadership position without ever having stepped near the bedside.

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3 Followers; 96,561 Visitors; 36,680 Posts

Went to school with several second degree students. None of them were like this.

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