I graduate in May 2010, and for the first time in my nursing career I feel very passionate about advancing my education in Community/Public Health Nursing. I always knew I wanted to go back to school I was just unsure of what I wanted to study or when I wanted to go back to school. It wasn't until my community clinical rotation where I felt that this is what I wanted to do. I know most master programs require at least 2 years experience, however I have been a student nurse tech for 2 years in in the float pool, had a externship on neuro icu, and had the opportunity to be on different units and clinical sites throughout my area.
My question is: Would a school even consider me even though I technically have not worked as a RN? A lot of people I know work before applying to a masters program. However, with the economy and all, I wanted to start applying now, graduate in May, and hopefully start school and work in the Fall?
Any information would truly be a great help!
Jan 2, '10
hey. i totally encourage n e one that wants to go ahead and further their nursing career. I just graduated in May 2009, and I'm going into my second semester in grad school later this month. I'm doing Family Nurse Practitioner and I want to specialize in dermatology. You will get some people who say "No, you should work and get some experience first", and then others will say "Wow I wish I would have done that and got it out the way, do it while you're young!" Most people support the fact that I did grad right away though. And I'm happy with the decision I made. Just work while ur in school, and if you know exactly what you want to do then you'll be fine!
Jan 10, '10
Look into specific school's websites. For example, the University of Pennsylvania will take students straight out of school, whereas others I have looked at say 1-3 years experience.
Jan 10, '10
Apart from the questions of whether students "should" have experience and whether particular schools do or don't require it, another concern is how informed you are about your professional goals at the point of being a new grad.
Most people aren't even aware of what a wide, varied range of career and role possibilities is available within nursing until they've been in it for a while. Many, many nurses have had the experience of entering or finishing nursing school with the idea that they are sure they want to specialize in a particular area (often based on personal experiences and/or clinical experiences in school (which are necessarily quite limited)), only to find, a few years down the road, that they're much more interested in something else entirely and are more interested in some role or career path they didn't know existed before.
Any graduate degree in nursing is going to cost you a lot of time, effort, and $$$ -- I think it's smart to invest a little time and effort "up front" to make sure you're getting a degree that is going to get you where you want to go (for the longer term).
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