Tuesday, July 28, 2009

It's a Man's World, or Maybe Not so Much

Male nurses make up a whopping 3-7% of the nursing community. So you can only imagine what it is like for them to go through nursing school in this female dominated area. I often wince during class when we are discussing subjects and the teachers pull out the chick card. The 'how to handle the penis'..."oh sorry, you guys all ready are familiar."
"Everyone remembers what it is like during your period when you ovulating...the pains you may feel? "...'Um, I don't have ovaries' "Sorry....(insert one male nurse's name here) you'll just have to believe us".
I could go on and on, but what's the point? The point I am trying to make here, is that there ARE male nurses...or as we call them....just plain "nurses". We are equal, we all manage the same tasks, do the same clinicals , and have a will to give and care take. Male nurses have excellent bedside manners and often appear less stressed out than their female counterparts. They bring a good vibe to the area and can often bring a new sense of humor to an otherwise stressful work environement.
Right now, I have a male friend who has completed the first part of the nursing program and is wanting to move forward. He deserves to move forward but is facing a few setbacks. I am just going to lay them out on the table ( hope you don't mind *JACK, that I am talking about this.)
1. Male in a female area of school
2. Program that caters to young single moms
3. His age (which I, personally admire him for)
4. Program which keeps changing the criteria to continue.
5. A new day and age.

*Jack gets by fine in the female area of school. He's got a sense of humor and an understanding of the way things work and evolve within our circle. He has this gift because of #3 on the list. He is older and has worked in many areas of life and has now headed toward nursing. This is admirable to me. It's not easy going back to school as a 50+ something male in a 20 something female dominated area . It's not easy, getting your shit together enough to go to class all day, work a real job, and take care of the wife and kids at home, all while trying to maintain your manliness. *Jack does this fairly well, most of the time. He is up with technology, he is willing to give things a try and he is also willing to help the people around them regardless of their sex or age.
Our nursing program has changed every year which I have been in school. Either asking us to take more classes to get onto the "wait list", or retaking a different level of the same class we have all ready taken. It would, honestly, be an unacceptable system in the real world, but within the college system, it is perfectly acceptable to give people the run around,expect more, give less and pull out every roll of red tape you can find to just get people to pay and quit halfway through... instead of helping people graduate with a new life in hand and great things to say about their experience. It just wouldn't fly...look at the the Big Car Corporations right now if you need proof.
*Jack, has maintained a C average as requested by the school (yes, he knows he could have often done better, but he often had to pick between home life, work, health, then school). Now the school says he must have a 2.5 average combined...which is a C average, for him to go forward. 2.5 is a low average, you may be saying to your self. Well, yes it is...but many nursing classes are pass or fail...and *Jack has passed all of those...the grades come from math and biology, psych classes and English...classes we know are needed, but not always necessary to place a catheter or calm a scared patient... *Jack is amazing at those skills.
*jack has a 2.2 average...now after 3 years of wait list, completing the LPN program, and trying to get into the next level for RN they are telling him NO...because he has a 2.2 average...(which is technically a C average, which was the request upon entering the program). No, you can't go on...Yes, we know you have passed everything...but basically screw you becasue of 3/10th of a grade average. Here's a man who is going to change lives,he may have been the one to care for yoru sick parents, but he happened to make a LOW 'C' in Pathophysiology...so he can't go on unless he pays again, starts completely over...and hopes for the best.
An adult man, who would like to change his career at an adult age, who doesn't cheat on tests, shows up, does the work and is perfect for the job....3/10th of a grade...sorry, buddy...this is the college system built for younger students who have more available cash flow and the time to screw around....not for you, *Jack.

But we are going to fight this one....yes we are...I am sick of watching people cheat their way through the education system to become lawyers, doctors, whatever...*Jack deserves this shot.

* names have been changed to protect the innocent


Lapetitemort said...

That is so weird. Most colleges, even 'ol CCA has the policy that once you claim your route/major, that you do not have to take any classes they change to the major as long as it's already your declared major. That seems really wrong to make him retake classes that he has already taken. That's like telling everyone who has already taken Microbio to go back because their using a new edition of the text. =(
It seems like Jack is such a good student. Fight it he should! Life is so unfair. Good luck to Jack!

k said...

That's bullshit ---

Mint Julep said...

My brother is an RN and I don't think he's ever had any problems. Maybe he has and just never talks about it. Who fucking knows.

miss. chief said...

oh. my. gosh.

seems like being a male nurse is the same as transferring universities 6 times...uuugh

i hate it when people question male nurses' authority or manliness; it's so stupid!!

Anonymous said...

Definetly unfair for Jack. I have also felt the pain of the continuous changes and criteria to move forward in nursing school. Count my vote in..Missy , right on for taking this stand...Peace

Anonymous said...

I can relate. I have been out of work for over a year, laid off with thousands of others. Never mind that I have excellent skills and glowing references from corporate VP's, VP's of companies of 20,000+ employees, and from other high level managers. They say "we've found another candidate whose skills better match the position". In other words, I'm too old. Oh, they don't say that. The lovely young thing who has all her "pretty on the outside" and who has no idea what tracking a corporate dept. budget means is the better candidate for the job. Don't get me wrong; there's nothing wrong with being pretty and young, but with no knowledge of what the real job involves, pretty on the outside is just what the employer gets. If I could prove age discrimination (and had the $$!), I'd sue them just to make my point! I have several friends in the same boat. So we paddle along with unemployment until it runs out and pray that somewhere at the end of the long boat ride is a job for each of us who knows how to get the job done efficiently, correctly, under budget and on time. I rest my case.

Anonymous said...

You go Myssi! Poor Jack! ;) It it's who I think you're talking about that is complete crap and every teacher should also be fighting for him. He was a better student than most in our class last year and has a heart of GOLD. Anyhooo... whoever it is, good for you Myssi. I love how you stand up for what you believe in. Miss you!

v8grrl said...

thanks everyone...Jack thanks you too...I'm sure.

hopefully we will hear something soon

Darrin Maxwell said...

So what happened to Jack? Did he finally get accepted? I'd love to know... thanks for this blog post. I'm a 36 yr old male going back to school to get my BSN. I'm just getting started and can only go to school part time. This post (and Jack) inspired me. Thank you!

v8grrl said...

jack did not get in, but last I heard he is still studying...
He will make a great RN one day as do 98% of all male nurses.