Jump to content
Riblett

Any medics turned RN's out there? Frustrated.

Recommended Posts

So I have not been on EMT City for a while now, but I guess I might find some like minds or at least some folks with similar experiences here.

A little background, I am currently a paramedic and an EMS instructor. I have been in EMS for eight years, five at the paramedic level, two as an Intermediate, and one as a Basic. I have an AAS in EMS and a BS in Health Science with a concentration in health care provider education.

After several years of prerequisites and applications, this past year I finally got into nursing school with the hopes of being a nurse practitioner. Yay for me...or so I thought. Accelerated BSN program was where I ended up.

I am currently in my second semester out of five and frankly I WANT OUT! I am so incredibly frustrated with the whole experience. My grades are good enough, usually top 25% of my class for nearly everything, but they are driving me crazy. :excl: These nursing instructors defy the laws of physics by simply getting their heads through the classroom doors in the morning. They are rude, condescending, unorganized, and frankly treat the students like something they scraped off the bottom of their shoe. They make the cockiest brattiest new medic seem as humble and gracious as a saint. They seem to pride themselves on being so incredibly esoteric and complicating even the simplest of information to the point of exasperation And to make it worse, they don't even seem to have the knowledge to back it up. They make blatant and irreconcilable errors in the information they present.

Examples: A-fib is a shock-able rhythm. Narcotic antagonists are a class of pain medicines. Hemorrhoids are weak muscles. Give aspirin to stroke patients. These are just some examples I have recalled in the last thirty seconds. And if I pick up on these I wonder how many more there are that I simply don't know any better than what they are saying.

I should say that I have actually had two awesome professors, who exceeded my expectations in their teaching abilities and clinical knowledge. But the rest of the instructors, I can't even describe. Their lectures are God awful. It seems that none of what I study is on the exams. I have tried the textbook, the lectures, study groups and everything. But the tests come around and it seems like the test was taken from another class or another school. And when everyone fails, the instructor are oblivious to the fact that they might need to do something a little different. There also seems to be complete and total lack of consistency in practical skills evaluations. Clinical skills evaluations are something I have done as an instructor for many years, and I find it very disturbing to see one student pass a station and the next student failed for doing the exact same thing.

The entire profession seems to have chip on their shoulder bigger than the US deficit. They are more concerned about teaching students nursing theory and how nurses are "professionals in their own right." etc. I wish they spent half as much time and effort actually teaching factual information and skills. And "nursing diagnosis" OMG. A collection of esoteric BS which does nothing other than satisfy some inferiority complex nurses have against the MDs. Google it if you haven't ever heard of it.

I would NEVER treat any of my students the way we are treated. We are talked down to, screamed at, made to feel stupid in front of patients, family members, and class mates. And to make the process way more degrading, we have to wear see through white scrubs. That is right, see through clothes. And an apron. :wtf:​ And being on a geriatric floor in that outfit means basically having a sign on your back that says "free adult diaper changes."

I have spent so much time and money to get here, but frankly I am so stressed I don't know if it is worth it. I dread getting out of bed in the mornings. Anyone else take the RN path? How did it go? How did you cope with any issues you had? Am I just at a bad school? What should I do differently?

On the first day of class we had to go around the room and tell our names, backgrounds, and previous education. After myself and the military corpsman did ours, the instructor went on a ten minute rampage about how inferior medics are and how they shouldn't be allowed to do anything other than take people to the hospital, etc. (My paramedic education was six semesters, full time, no cook book medicine. I don't get frustrated with having to learn theory. In fact, I value an appropriate amount of theoretical education. All my EMT Basic students walk into their state exam able to describe in their own words the pathophysiology behind every major emergency condition we see, the ins and outs of every drug they give, and how and why to do every skill in their scope, but I digress :rolleyes2:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Riblet: My wife went from having a masters in special education and a 20 year back ground as a teacher, along with being an EMT and Intermediate for 25 years to nursing school. She went to a highly regarded hospital based nursing school for their ADN program that is very competitive to get accepted into. She found some of the "old battle ax instructors" that had the attitude, and who spent a large percentage of their time demeaning other professions. Many of them had been "instructors for decades and came from the old school way of doing things. She was lucky in having an advisor that understood she wasn't about to buy into the BS line and having spent 20 yrs as a teacher & in EMS she had more experience and education than the "instructors". Her advice was to do the work and get through the semester, put it behind her, and move forward. My wife put up with it and ended up graduating with a 3.9 GPA. That was 7 years ago. She has since gone on and completed her BSN with honors. My advice to you is keep your head on straight and keep looking forward to your ultimate goals. Don't let the pettiness derail your plans. Yes they had to wear the silly white scrub dresses and the little "old school" dixie cup nursing hat during their clinicals, It's just tradition. Pants were not allowed. Now that she's an RN the hospital she works at has a much more liberal interpretation of what dress code is. tonight she went to work with scrubs with labradors puppies on them.

Edited by island emt

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Try to hang in there. Nursing is truly one of those fields where, "Those who can do and those who can't teach," holds true. You are almost half way through, it would be a waste at this point. You know your stuff so just ignore the wrong things they teach. Others may disagree with this saying that you are hurting the others, but in a malignant environment like this you need to watch out for yourself. You are going to find lots of nurses along the way who think they know more than docs do, sometimes it is true. Be the nurse you want to be and learn not to be the nurse that your instructors are. Don't be such a stranger around here, use us to vent your frustrations and keep you focused.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm about to graduate and can relate to a degree. 5 semesters left? are you going straight through to the NP program? I can say clinicals get better. We were in geri for the first two semesters and I almost didn't make it. Now we get to work critical care and learn a lot more. I would keep EMS to yourself unless asked. I wowed my preceptor today by knowing 2nd degree type 2 av-block and she was so impressed. Just keep EMS out of clinical as most preceptors don't need to know that. Did you research the program first? My program has some idiots teaching in it but they certainly don't yell at us or treat us like idiots.



You are going to find lots of nurses along the way who think they know more than docs do, sometimes it is true.

Like the resident on my patient today that ordered a "STAT" mag drip when their last mag value was in 9/2012 and was 2.4 even then? Yah. "Yes, Doctore XX, this is the nurse for 14, I'm just calling to clarify your new order for a mag drip, he hasn't had a mag level since 9/2012 and it was normal then." Doctor: "Oh, that was in 2012? Oh yeah, cancel that order. Sorry."

I was just glad it wasn't 1) Potassium and 2) that I knew it didn't make sense.

Just stick with it. You'll make it through the other side eventually and we be a better nurse and hopefully help change the way nurses are educated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Unfortunately, the name of the game is often "cooperate to graduate" when it comes to nursing school. I have a degree in nursing and have never considered teaching nursing, focusing on respiratory therapy and EMS instead. Clearly, if you are concerned about abuse, your programme and college have policies and said policies should be available to look up through the student handbooks (online line or in print). This route will be a judgement call and just understand that you have to choose your battles.

I am hesitant to comment on knowing more than somebody. I may catch or notice certain issues, but I also expect a physician to call me out when I'm having a moment where I'm not at the top of my game. Things like allergies and harmful medication interactions, routes or doses are quite easy to slip through the cracks. I rather see it as doing my job as part of a greater team. This is especially true with residents who are essentially students learning the ropes.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's hard because many nursing instructors don't understand what you're doing when you're trying to synthesize past experience and education with the new material you're being presented. If you come in excited, ready to work and apply new things and you don't seem "scared" enough, sorry to break it to you but you have the BIGGEST bulls-eye painted on you for some reason...

I agree with put your head down, do the best you can, bring the stuff you *really* want to discuss to the City, and go from there. Nursing is a different world from EMS, but there is a lot of overlap and I really do enjoy both. Once you get through school you can appreciate that you really did want to do this and that you're good at what you do.

If you look back, you can see that I had some of the same struggles. I learned to just shut up and sit in the corner and occasionally ask something prefacing it with "sorry if I'm going too in depth with this, but does ______ have relationship to _____ in this context?" or "Can I ask a higher level question here?" On the plus side, in the senior simulations where you're supposed to "rescue" your patient, I was dead on there... that was nice.

Sweet revenge is I think I was one of the very first to have a job... in the hospital system... even though I wasn't the instructors' little darling.

Wendy

CO EMT-B

RN-ADN

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Examples: A-fib is a shock-able rhythm. Narcotic antagonists are a class of pain medicines. Hemorrhoids are weak muscles. Give aspirin to stroke patients. These are just some examples I have recalled in the last thirty seconds. And if I pick up on these I wonder how many more there are that I simply don't know any better than what they are saying.

Really. Im sorry to laugh at their gross incompetence. But where do they get their RN license. A cracker jack box?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really. Im sorry to laugh at their gross incompetence. But where do they get their RN license. A cracker jack box?

You may want to seriously reconsider throwing stones, grasshopper.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

C,mon Mike. When a nurse says a naroctic antagonist is a pain killer and a fib is a shockable rhythm I draw the line for stupidity. However I will admit that there is a opiod antagonist such a nubain that is a pain killer. And depending on the stability of the a-fib it can be shocked to correct it . However it can be managed with medications also.

Edited by runswithneedles

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for sharing your experience. I think it is a very hard because many nursing instructors don't understand what you're doing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This thread is quite old. Please consider starting a new thread rather than reviving this one.

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...