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Experience of a foreign educated nurse: An autoethnography


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Background: A shortage of skilled health professionals including nurses exists all over the world and New Zealand is not an exception. Recruiting nurses from overseas has been one solution to the problem. There have been reports that some foreign educated nurses experience difficulties in working as registered nurses in New Zealand (Walker, 2008). Despite the difficulties, there has been a paucity of research in this area in New Zealand.
Aim: This project examines my experiences as a black foreign educated nurse working in New Zealand. A personal story according to Ellis and Bochner (2000) gives power and authority to voice and subjective position. I provide a unique voice from a nurse with a colonised background for nursing. My voice will allow the reader to gain an understanding of my particular experience and hopefully invite dialogue by presenting views from the margins.
Method: Utilising autoethnography allowed me to use personal experiences as data for this research, in doing so, give voice to personal experiences. As a nurse from a colonial background, using post colonial theory allowed for a critique of colonisation in relation to my experiences working as a foreign educated nurse in New Zealand.
Findings: Colonisation is the main theme that emerged from this research. Colonisation defines me as an inferior human being and writing this project is a way of restoring my self worth. The effect of colonisation lives on in the daily lives of the colonised people today and, therefore, it is important for other nurses to understand the effects of that oppression and its implications to practice. Other subthemes to have emerged from the narratives include internalised oppression, marginalisation, inferiority and low self esteem.
Significance: The goal of this research is to provide an understanding of the feelings and challenges facing foreign educated nurses with a colonial background working in New Zealand. It is my hope that this new understanding will allow for both foreign and home nurses to reflect on their experiences and explore strategies to overcome these difficulties.
Conclusion: Through this project, I have attempted to discover the impact of colonisation on my experiences as a foreign educated nurse and I have provided this account with my personal critique as an example for other foreign educated nurses with similar history. Through this exploration, I can shape my identity in my own way rather than take on an identity written for me.

Item Type: Graduate student work
Additional Information: 30 credit postgraduate research project
Uncontrolled Keywords: Foreign educated nurse, experiences, postcolonial
Subjects: R Medicine > RT Nursing
Divisions: Schools > Centre for Health & Social Practice
Depositing User: Gaby Douglas
Date Deposited: 14 Dec 2009 22:15
Last Modified: 21 Jul 2023 02:22

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