Stagnant perceptions of nursing among high school students: results of a shadowing intervention study.
To gain insight into high school students' perceptions of the role of the nurse and to explore students' impressions of nursing following a nurse-shadowing intervention. Often nurses abandon staffing positions in the first 1-2 years, reporting a "poor fit" with nursing. Few studies have examined expectations and perceptions of nursing among high school students; a population of potential nurses in whom a more accurate view of nursing opportunities and professionalism may be fostered. High school students from two North Carolina counties participated in a nurse-shadowing intervention. Constant comparison and thematic coding were used for analysis of post-intervention in-depth interviews. Sixteen of 24 students completed the study. Misperception of nursing was the dominant theme. Five sub-themes were professional role responsibility, teamwork, caring relationships, tools and technology, and medication management. Experiential knowledge of nursing was a core need for students interested in nursing careers. These data suggest that a nurse shadowing program may positively influence perceptions of nursing, and may result in improved recruitment and retention in the workplace.
Porter, G; Edwards, PB; Granger, BB
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