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when I was in full time education, the focus on assimilating the minds of everyone else in my immediate location, was emphasised with much greater force than allowing my own mind to speak to me on the topics being covered in classes.
From the manner in which you describe these courses, it seems as if the insistence upon introduction to one another, is meant to help reinforce the human element of the work you do.
As a nurse, I would imagine that it is important that you be able to communicate effectively with people who come under your care, many of whom you will never see once they are discharged from whatever ward or facility that you work in.