1. Monteau, Manouchka RN

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We need to teach nursing students about the culture of nursing, what constitutes professional behavior, and how to deal with nurses who try to bully and intimidate them ("Stop the Eye Rolling: Supporting Nursing Students in Learning," Viewpoint, January). Once, I was shadowing a nurse and an administrative assistant asked her why she bothered to take students, since most nurses she knew refused to work with them. My nurse replied, "It's not like I like them. I just feel bad and have to take them." I was standing right in front of her. This negative comment left me feeling worthless and made me question why I selected this profession.


Every single one of us creates the future of our profession from the actions and behaviors we demonstrate today. When under pressure, it's human nature to narrow our perception and focus on ourselves ("my patients" and "my tasks"). But these fast-paced, stressful times call for just the opposite. We need to eliminate intimidating and disruptive behaviors involving nursing staff and nursing students.


As nurses, we have a responsibility to mentor and lead those joining our ranks and to be the nurses others want to work with. I believe the following supportive behaviors can nurture and feed our young: Ask nursing students for feedback on what you can do to ensure they have a great experience. Approach students on your unit and ask them to honestly share their experiences, both positive and negative. Make sure students get their break, and offer to help frequently. Demonstrate caring.


Manouchka Monteau, RN


Brooklyn, NY