and I fear how they are being educated.
Intern (noun): A student or trainee who works, sometimes without pay, in order gain work experience or satisfy requirements for a qualification.
CP: I always strive to present real world, everyday situations to my students on rotations. I only have them for a limited time and know they cannot possibly see everything but I want them to see things and to practise things they may not see on their other rotations.
Me: Very noble of you. I know you love to teach.
CP: Exactly. That's why I always have hired interns and students on rotations throughout the year. I host as many as I can.
Myself: Doesn't it get exhausting?
CP: Not when I know these students are the phuture of our profession. I want them trained correctly. I think of it as training my replacements.
Me: There has to be a reason you are talking with us today.
Myself: Yeah. You don't usually let us out to play with others.
CP: It's the students.
Myself: What about them?
CP: They just don't get it. The last crop that rotated through was full of some of the most clueless students I'd ever seen. I kept asking myself, and them, why did they pick pharmacy? Granted, this was a small handful, but the situation has become noticeably worse over the last 5-10 years.
CP: I had one student who looked as though he'd rather be anywhere other than in a pharmacy.
Myself: Isn't that where they're going to work?
CP: Yes. I understand they may not choose retail but, I've never seen someone so opposed to even making an attempt at learning anything.
CP: I asked him to tell me what quantity we dispense on a Proair Inhaler and to calculate the days supply.
Myself: Easy. Grab a box and read it to see it's 8.5 grams.
CP: Precisely. Except he just stared at me. Like I was going to turn into a digital Proair board that would flash him the answers. Every day was like this. Absolutely no desire to learn anything or try.
Myself: Lame. What else?
CP: This one takes the cake; and is also the reason for the entire post.
Me: <about time>
CP: Shut it. As you notice, I defined "intern" earlier, correct?
Me: Yes. A student.
CP: I received a summary review from the students I had on rotation over the previous year and read all the comments so I could learn what worked and what I could improve.
Myself: Always learning. You're pretty smart, CP.
Me: Uh-oh. What did you see?
CP: I read this comment: "I think the students on rotations should not be expected to complete tasks an intern usually does".
Myself: I'm going to state the obvious here for you, CP. Students are, by definition, interns, and vice versa, correct?
Me: So, what was the point of the complaint?
CP: We had our hired interns working a few shifts while the students were there and apparently the students believed the interns should have done all the work.
Myself: But how would the students learn if everyone else was doing all the work?
CP: You are a genius. That's why we get along so well. I really am at a loss to describe how I felt after reading that. I still can't get my head around it now as the new rotation season dawns. As I have stated many times, I want to encourage people to love their profession. As a preceptor it is my obligation to foster their enthusiasm and channel it into a love for their chosen profession. These students decided to make pharmacy their career. I loathe the pharmacists who host students and complain about how awful the profession has become. If you're training my kid, don't sour her on her life's dream because you found the experience awful. Seriously, don't teach students. They are entering the profession today. Teach them how to succeed based on today's environment, not on the environment when you started.
Me: What you're saying about this last example is, you can't make them learn.
CP: "I'm trying to free your mind, Neo. But I can only show you the door. You're the one that has to walk through it."
Me: Deep thoughts, by Morpheus.
CP: I just don't know what the students expect anymore. I used to believe in the quality of program to make up for the lack of quality in the students. However, with so many schools open now, the talent pool has been so diluted that we are destined to become the homeopathy of healthcare.