School of Nursing
Changes in Student Nurses’ Profile
In the past, most nursing students were single females in late adolescence.
- Developmental tasks included
- Career and marriage decisions
- Separation from parents
- Establishing an independent lifestyle
- Achieving financial independence
- Motivators included:
- Desire for approval
- Building self-esteem
- Achieving success
- Rarely realized demands culture of nursing would make on their lives
More recently, the majority of nursing students are older adult learners of both sexes with midlife developmental issues:
- Developmental tasks may include:
- Establishing career after raising children
- Second career pursuits
- Motivation is derived from:
- Often choose nursing for intrinsic rewards as well as seeking financial stability in a career perceived as "always in demand."
- Often recognize upward mobility potential and may be considering advanced practice or administration from onset of education.
- Life experiences may make it harder to accept a student role. Need to feel "credited" for prior experience/knowledge
- May have many recent life changes including marriage/divorce, birth of children, death or disability of parents, are confronting own mortality, recognizing own physical changes
- Frequently are juggling many responsibilities, making student role not always first priority-children, day care, elderly parents, full or part time employment