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Parker, Carlo

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As the population of the United States continues to become more diverse, the nursing profession is working toward diversifying its nursing workforce. Diversification of the nursing profession is linked to improved patient outcomes and culturally competent care. The experiences of minority nursing students with English as an additional language (EAL) have been studied including some interventional studies. Still, there is a gap in exploring the experiences of Hispanic/Latino nursing students with EAL. The literature described EAL as the most significant risk factor for non-acceptance into a Bachelor of Science in Nursing program for any group of otherwise qualified applicants. Since this is one of the fastest growing minority groups in the United States and is estimated to become 29% of the total population in the United States by the year 2060, having a proportionate population of Hispanic/Latino nurses cannot be overemphasized. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to explore the lived experiences of prelicensure Hispanic/Latino nursing students with EAL in the academic setting. Fourteen participants from across the United States participated in this phenomenological study guided by Moustakas's (1994) transcendental phenomenological approach. Semi-structured interviews were conducted, recorded, and transcribed. Four themes were identified: (a) serving a greater purpose, (b) double-edged sword, (c) culture is connection, and (d) facilitators. The findings revealed that these students were driven to become nurses because they carried a sense of responsibility beyond themselves and sought to serve a greater purpose. They experienced a double-edged sword regarding multilingualism, which had its benefits and challenges. They also described challenges with isolation, invisibility, culture shock, lack of diversity, family obligations, impostor syndrome, financial struggles, lack of mentorship, and language challenges specifically with academic language and translating medical terminology. They described their strengths came from being multilingual and multicultural, which allowed them to connect, empathize, and provide improved patient-centered care. Their multicultural background also gave them a broader perspective and allowed them to better connect with diverse populations. Hispanic/Latino EAL nursing students naturally served as translators and educators to patients, peers, and communities.


181 pages

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