Nursing Shortage? Not in Some Eyes.

I know this rant has been making the rounds on Twitter.  It is full of rage, a touch of woe is me and the grim reality of the situation we place so many new grads in.  A quote (shield your eyes if easily offended…)

Czech nursing students.

Image via Wikipedia: They got jobs.

Well, after a year of getting rejected I have finally decided to give nursing the bird. FUCK YOU NURSING FIELD! Too bad the schools and media are still insisting that people go to RN school. Believe me THERE IS NO FUCKING SHORTAGE! New grads are considered garbage. On top of that, the degree serves no purpose in any other setting. BSN is a complete waste of time and money.   …And it is not just the economy. Hospitals turning huge profits stopped new grad programs and hire foreigners.

Wow.  The rest continues on in a rant that she (assuming a she) will never get a job, never put her degree to use and that she wasted 6 years of her life.

First gut reaction:  she’s right.  It sucks to be told there is a ready market of jobs just waiting for new grads.  Read too many job requirements of  “at least 2 years experience” and raged at the screen saying, “How am I supposed to get experience if I can’t get a job?  WTF?!”  I know many, many grads who have cycled through our unit for practicum who have yet to find jobs.  We have nurses on our unit who jumped at the first offer (methadone clinic anyone?) but persevered and got the jobs they wanted.  In fact that was me.  I got lucky.  I can empathize.  The betrayal of it all is painful, kind of like when you realized Santa was not real, or your girlfriend was banging your best friend.

Second reaction:  buh-bye.  Maybe we’re (as a profession) better off not having this person in our ranks.  Nursing is not easy…what happens the first time they get a difficult assignment?  Or have “one of those days”?  Run out?  Quit?  Nothing in this profession is given to you, one has to work for it.  Take for example NurseXY, who landed his dream job in a world-class CVICU.  Seriously, go read his stuff, he worked his ass off for it.  Nothing was easy.  No one ever promised (at least anymore) that a job would be waiting right when you passed NCLEX – and if they did you should make sure they aren’t selling a pile of hooey.  Just because there is a nursing shortage does nothing to guarantee you a job just because you passed the boards.  Anyone who degrades their education to this degree and doesn’t realize that sometimes sacrifice is a needed part of our job has no place being a nurse.

Final reaction:  no seriously, buh-bye.  If you want to work as a nurse enough to devote 6 years and thousand of dollars to do so, giving up isn’t an option.  She never says that she looked out of state for jobs, into different avenues than the traditional hospital based nurse or for other ways to be a nurse.  Our system interviewed over 500 grads for spots in our residency program and they came from all over the Northwest.  They tried to make it work.  There is nothing to say she did this, just a whiny, “why isn’t it given to me!” rant.  We have too many toxic personalities in nursing and truly don’t need anymore.

I know this is harsh.  Maybe this person is a amazing nurse, top notch clinical skills with empathy to boot, is driven far beyond belief and tried EVERY avenue to make things work, but based on what I’m reading, what they posted onto the internet for everyone to read, I doubt it.  And with this rant, I doubt any but the most desperate, worst, idiot recruiter would ever even consider asking for a resume.  I know it sucks, but maybe it’s for the better.

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It’s Like It’s the End of the World.

Snow.

Nothing can bring such madness as this one simple word.  Even though it is just a threat of snow,  nothing on the ground and people act like it is the Blizzard to End ALL Blizzards.

Snow haunted me through nursing school.  No mater if there was 2 inches or a foot, I had to go.  Nothing says fun like a drive to school in a 1973 VW Bug at 6am when it is 24° out and windchill to 0° all while lugging my massive Med-Surg text, A&P book, plus the other assorted miscellany needed for a day of school out to the car while looking like Ralphie’s little brother due to the amount of clothes I was wearing.

There she is, the little red one with that light dusting of snow.  That little car got to everyone of my clinical dates (even the one I got pulled over before), to class everyday except the day I broke my key thanks to ice.  Nothing says fun like scraping the inside of a windshield so that I could see out.  Sure, I would have to sit there and warm it up for 30 minutes before even attempting to drive, but I drove in all sorts of nasty weather in Flagstaff.

It was never a question of going to school.  So I learned how to drive in the snow.  Learned how to pry my frozen fingers off the wheel when I got to school.  I learned how to carry the 60lbs books and other crap we were required to carry.  Nursing school taught me far more than the required information needed to become a nurse:  it taught me to deal with adversity.

It isn’t easy, just like nursing isn’t easy.  It breaks us down to build us back up.  Remember when you first stepped on a floor for clinicals?  You were freaked out, like our city in the face of a storm, but as the day went, you grew more comfortable, it grew easier and soon you found yourself thriving in the new and different environment.  Now when you step on the floor you know what needs to be done.  You know how it needs to be done.  That’s knowledge brought on by the act of nursing, the practice.  You are able to deal with the adversity that faces us everyday because you’ve been through it all.

Now I’m off to stock up on groceries, run around like crazy tracking down a heater and generally acting like an idiot – there’s snow coming!