I get a little bit offended whenever someone says you’re smart, why didn’t you become a doctor, implying we don’t have the smarts; it insults both professions. People may be well intentioned, but it actually insults us as nurses, as though we are lacking in intelligence, as though we failed out or couldn’t cut it in the big league, as though our worth as a critically thinking caregiver isn’t as important. Walk in our shoes for a day. The scope of our practice; what we have to learn, understand and do on a daily basis would probably shock people - but that’s neither here nor there. It sends the wrong message to young girls and boys when we only tell them when you grow up you’ll be as smart as a doctor, excluding the possibility of nursing as a career of worth. It insults doctors, and meds students a little too, because it sends people a message that if they don’t cut it they’ll join the ranks of a nurse - and really, there’s a lot of great doctors out there who respect our profession just as much as we respect theirs. I’m happy with my choice, I didn’t “trade down” to become a nurse. It wasn’t a second choice. I don’t believe one profession has more value or intellect than the other, but I do believe some of the smartest people I’ve met haven’t always necessarily been educated, just as some of the most educated people have surprised me by saying the most narrow minded things. Intelligence is investing in a career that matters to you, not what society tells you to do.
—  A Nurse, nothing more, nothing less.

[Reflections on Nursing, National Nurses Week]]