The Orion released an article on Wednesday titled, “Waiting for Room,” about the scope of impact surrounding the nursing program at Chico State.
The article details how only 40 students are admitted to the program every semester. This results in the rejection of 86 percent of qualified applicants. Those declined are left to either sidebar their aspiration until they are admitted, or completely abandon their dream to pursue the nursing major altogether.
I empathize with the program. They are short staffed due to professionals forgoing the opportunity to teach to pursue a better-paid position. There is also a shortage of clinical placements for those admitted to the program to practice hands-on treatment.
I am torn between two thoughts on this issue.
There is the practical side of my brain that believes competition is healthy. That people in this field should be the crème of the crop. I would hate to be put in a position of life or death with a nurse who was at the bottom of her class and chanting the cliché ‘D’s get Diplomas!’
Then there’s the side of me that really adores people. It hurts my heart to imagine 86 percent of qualified individuals getting declined from a major they intended to pursue. From the handful of nursing students I know, Wildcat or otherwise, they are all driven, passionate people. It is not peculiar to find them feverishly studying for the MCAT or in the library preparing for their next exam.
I suppose I could cope with a rejection of students from such a program. That is as long as the numbers where modest in proportion. The most overwhelming thought that consumes my mind when analyzing this information is this: what do those students who got declined do? Where do they go? Do they simply muddle on, and change majors? Or do they persevere and follow their passion?
If you have any insight on this issue, or a personal testimony, please comment or contact me on Twitter or via email.
Amanda Irons can be reached at [email protected] or @amanda_irons on Twitter