I'm currently waiting to see if I've been accepted to a Spring '07 ADN program, and in the event that I don't get in, I was thinking about looking into my school's Health Care Assistant (or Nurse Aid) program. It's a one semester program, and I figured I could do that while waiting to try again for the ADN in the Fall. Maybe I'm a little ahead of myself, but it can't hurt to explore all the options, right?
Plus, I thought it might give me a chance to see if Nursing really is for me, and make a little money in the process. What do ya'll think?
Thanks in advance,
Oct 16, '06
It's Good That You Are Thinking Ahead, As Long As You Don't Forget That Your Goal Is To Become A Nurse. I Hope The Course Isn't Too Expensive Because Cna's Usually Don't Make Very Much Money.
But You Are Right, It Will Give You Better Exposure To The Field And Help You To Decide If It Is Right For You. If You Do Do The Progam, Make Sure You Take Advantage Of All The Time You'll Get To Talk To The Nurses On The Job And Get All Of Your Questions Answered.
As Long As You Are Taking The Course While Waiting To Enter The Progam, There Isn't Anything Wrong With That.
Best Of Luck Getting In.
Oct 16, '06
CNA work can be rewarding and a benefit to your career as a Nurse. Beware of the pitfall where you start working as a CNA and then think, "there is no way I want to ever be a Nurse." This does happen sometimes; however, working as a CNA and working as a Nurse are two different things! I think that the experience as a CNA is invaluable to a Nursing career. You can still be a great Nurse and never have worked as a CNA, but it does help! Good luck to you.
Oct 18, '06
EXCELLENT idea! I think every nursing student should be a CNA first (luckly in my area programs it is now a requirement). It takes a lot of work, patience, understanding, time management, flexibility, and stomach hardening to work as a CNA & I honestly believe it prepares you for nursing school. Its an excellent way to know if nursing is right for you! Do not get me wrong...there have been MANY times that I have thought that I never want to be a nurse if this CNA work is anything like it but I watch and watch what all the RNs I have ever worked with do in the various different types of nursing situations I have been in & it is nothing like CNA work. As a CNA you will get the "dirty" part of the job and simply "assist" the nurse. But it exposes you to the field & it is a vital role in the medical field and I think too many nurses and other medical personel of higher education tend to forget that so I am hopeing that me being a CNA now while going to school for my LPN, eventually RN, then MSN (hehe) will keep me grounded and centered on my ultimate goal of conqueoring it all! LOL
Oct 23, '06
I agree with TBird. I am in the nursing program at the moment and I wish they would of required us to become CNA's first. For one, first day of clinicals for us we we're to follow around CNA's and help them. The most we could do to help them was take vitals. So I felt more like a burden to those hard working CNA's then helping them. I had no experience at all in a healthcare setting so now thinking back to it all I wish I would have become a CNA first.
Oct 23, '06
I think it is a great idea. In fact, that is the route that I went. I became a CNA and am now in the Nursing Program at school. The posters are right, the duties are very different, however, I am still providing them a great service. No matter what task I am tackling at the moment.
There are schools in my state that are now requiring CNA before entering the Nursing program. I think it is highly beneficial and some of the skills testing was just review because I had already been applying those skills daily. The same with some of the terms you will need, and to me anything I already know that we are being assigned in class is an added bonus! Just one more answer on the test I will get right
I would also like to mention that although the pay isn't the same as nurses, as another poster mentioned, the pay is well above mimimum wage where I live.
Good luck with your decision!
Oct 23, '06
I'm surprised your program doesn't require it. It seems most are changing their reqs for you to be a CNA before you start school.. Anyway, I think its a great idea. You will definetly be ahead of your when it comes to basic nursing skills (ie, vitals, caths, positioning, rounds, etc.). Not only will it give you insight to nursing before you start school, if you work as a CNA, you will have nurses by your side all day at work. Many of the nurses I work with will help CNA's out if they are in nursing school. They show them charts and explain meds and stuff to them and will answer questions. But, thats if you find a good job with open nurses... I love being a CNA, and it really helped me realize I wanted to do more than nursing for a living and I ended up changing my career path. Its a great place to start in the medical field!
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