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OPINION: #moveustotheuniversity: Return To The Status Quo As The 49th Florence Nightingale Trophy Speech Contest Holds
Date Posted: 13/May/2019
On the 4th of April 2019, a movement kicked off on social media including Twitter, Facebook and Instagam with the hashtag #moveustotheuniversity courtesy of the National Association of Nigeria Student Nurses & Midwives and Nursing Students in Schools of Nursing. The aim of the movement was to kickstart the drive and need for schools of nursing to be moved to the universities.
On the 5th of April the Campaign produced a paperwork drafted by the National Association of Nigeria Nurses And Midwives (NANSNM) and in part it read:
... During the 2018 Florence Nightingale Speech Contest competition, national and some zonal executives of this association were elected in Egbe, Kogi State Nigeria. On assumption of office, many schools began to bring up their challenges to the national body. When we felt that the problems were getting beyond our control, we realized that the task was far above our comprehension; hence we began to consult elders within the profession. Somebody just asked of the problems. They are as numerous as the stars but to mention few: 
. High tuition and other levies of most schools of nursing most especially in Southwest Nigeria (some schools are paying up to #600,000 in a year) 
. Maltreatment of students ( students cutting grass with school uniform) 
. Proscription of Student Union Government without meaningfid reason(s). 
. Forcing students not to cook but to daily buy food in school built cafeteria. 
. Undue punishment of students for being student advocates Control of student union's account by school managements. 
. Alarming treatment in the hospital during clinical postings 
. Segregation of degree students from School of Nursing students in clinical settings 
. Difficulty in career profession 
. Sending larger percentage of students back home after end of 6month examination. 
. RN certificates not equating to any educational certificate among other problems. 
The above among others drove the national executives from their homes to people of knowledge to seek advice and support on how the problems of our members whom we are ably representing can be solved without reoccurrence.
At this juncture, it has been evidenced that the continuity of hospital based training in Nigeria would not only serve as a cog in the wheel of progress in the nursing profession but would also not favour the patient outcomes which happen to be the center of all. To this effect, the leadership of this association and NUNSA are humbly calling upon the government at all levels, individuals and organizations wearing the garment of nursing or not to rise up like never before to the vociferation of nursing students in schools of nursing and ensure that drastic measures are taken towards moving us to university. We want to also urge the students to sacrifice their all towards the achievement of this movement. 
Whilst there was a multitude of support for the movement from nurses across the country with some stating their grieviances for all and sundry to see, a few fell back on the usual troup of "why are you washing our dirty linens in public..." see a few posts below:
. If you want to know the reason Nursing profession is not making much progress... Check within the profession 
. Life of a Nurse
SON - 3yrs
Then, spent 1yr waitn for result & apply for DE, BNsc; 4 -5years
Internship - 1year, NYSC - 1year
Spending 10 - 11years to be a graduate of Bsc? Is this not crazy?
We will talk about the salary later but for now, please 
. You are giving twitter community more clues and ideas of your professional weakness by coming here to wash dirty linen outside.. #moveustotheuniversity
. Retweet for #twittercommuity to have more points to mock us right?
Is NMCN on twitter?
Are the principals and HOD of nursing department on twitter?
Is NANNN active on twitter?
Who then are we expressing our grivience to?
. Paid over 250k per year in SON, excluding feeding, buying textbooks, unexpected expenses, having less than 3weeks holiday throughout the 3years of training and at the end,still need to spend over 6more years just to get a first degree. #moveustotheuniversity
. 3 years of hardwork,Lack of enough sleep, unintentional dieting and after everything I still get paid peanuts. I say enough is enough! #moveustotheuniversity
. School of nursing is just a modified senior secondary school. You speak up... boom... resit. #moveustotheuniversity
. Do not let's be discouraged by negative contributions, let's be focused and keep our head straight. We say no to FNSC, no to OND/HND 
. Nursing students have been silent for years and handing over endurance from generation to generation. The national executives of the association felt that it's time to change the narrative and the modus operandi. Hence,  the clarion call for a change.  #moveustotheuniversity
. This is extortion.Spending 8 years for a degree instead of 5 years.We deserve just as much as the University gets.The rigorous trainings, high fees and other extra fees isn't worth this.We want equality #moveustotheuniversity
. Do we have to spend 10-11 years studying nursing? How many more years to retirement? #moveustotheuniversity
The 49th edition of the Florence Nightingale speech contest was held and organised by the Lagos State College of Nursing Midwifery, and Public Health in collaboration with the Lagos State Ministry of Health as scheduled.
At the event which was graced by the Minister for Health Prof Isaac Adewole, there were a total of 46 participants from various schools across the country as OAUTHC, Ile ife won the FNSC trophy back to back, the third time in four years running.
While I raise my cap way up high for the winner of the competition and his school for once more being honoured by the excellence of its students and young nurses, I was quite gobsmacked when i saw the picture above with the ridder: 
"There's beauty in lifting the trophy especially when it is accompanied with ministerial handshake...."
It was not so long ago that Nigerians as a whole came together to lambast the Federal Government for welcoming CHAN Eagles Players with ‘Handshake Reception’ on the 8th of March, 2018. 
You might recall that the National Association of Nigeria Nurses And Midwives body using their handles @NANSNM_Nigeria had asked student nurses to boycot the then upcoming "Florence Nightingale Speech Contest (FNSC)" to show their displeasure, support and intent to drive home the push for University Education but alas as seen with all other online polls and petitions it all ended by the wayside...
Oh well at least there were gifts to go with the handshake
By Avalon



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