Thinking about going to Nursing School, should I be a CNA first?? - page 2

by mariecandela1985

4,696 Views | 26 Comments

Hi everyone, I just needed some advice. I have a bachelor's degree and would like to get my B.S.N. I have a few prerequisites to take first like A&P 1 &2 and Microbio. I just started as an NA and am working at a nursing home.... Read More


  1. 0
    I don't know where most of you are looking for jobs but here in Florida, CNA in a hospital setting is almost impossible. I have been looking constantly since May and only had 2 interviews. Everyone keeps using the mantra - experience needed, 1 - 2 years. Even the LTC and rehab centers are requesting it. I also go my Phlebotomy national certification and zero luck. The schools are pumping out lots of grads but without the experience, you are not gonna get a position. I've tried all the FT,PT,Per Diem, No benefits, all shifts, everything. Personally I think the market is over saturated right now with new grads and until the retirement age staff move on, it will be slim pickings for a while.
  2. 0
    YES YES YES
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    If you really want to be a CNA, go for it. Doing the certification was enough for me.

    I like being an ER nurse (generally) but I would've despised being a CNA and, 3.5 years in, I think that any small benefit that it might have conferred has long since been surpassed by my nursing experience.
    besaangel likes this.
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    One of the definate pro's to being a CNA first.

    Nursing homes will pay either 100% (mine did this) or give tutition assistance for nursing school after 1 yr working with them, they usually only require you stay with them 2-3 yrs after.
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    Yes if you enjoy being a CNA and you do it well you will be a great nurse..crappy cna=crappy nurse
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    I am a big-time advocate of going the CNA route first. My CNA cert has helped me through so many parts of my RN journey. Before school, working as a CNA gave me the experience I needed to get accepted into nursing schools that previously rejected me. During school, my RN coworkers went out of their way to take me under their wing. They always encouraged me to learn and ask questions and involved me in valuable learning experiences. After I graduated, my RN coworkers taught me how to study for NCLEX... And now that I have my license, I have an opportunity to enter a new grad program at my hospital that has been otherwise closed to external applicants. Of my peers, the only new grad nurses that have gotten RN jobs so far have been working as CNAs at their specific hospitals. I have heard more than once from several hospitals that they hire internally first and give their own coworkers priority. I cannot say enough about how appreciative I am of becoming a CNA first. I was one of the stronger clinical students because of it and became an expert in the foundations of nursing.
    proudcna likes this.
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    Quote from RJay25
    Yes if you enjoy being a CNA and you do it well you will be a great nurse..crappy cna=crappy nurse
    I beg to disagree on this issue... CNA is mostly about comfort measures and although is a part of RN, does not define what kind of nurse you will be. If you were horrible at cleaning/preparing 10-15 patients in 8 hrs, I just cant see how that will impact a RN who has half that amount.

    If you are incompetent as a CNA because the tasks are simple, maybe you just didnt like it or it wasnt for you. Then again, to properly determine if a CNA is truly bad, you'd have to put them in every setting and judge them based on that.

    Also, if crappy means poor lifting, bathing, feeding, do most nurses really do that anyways?
  8. 1
    Quote from ♪♫ in my ♥
    My program required a CNA cert prior to beginning.

    My take on it is that CNA experience is not of any particular benefit upon entering nursing. The basic skillset can be acquired quickly and is a very small part of a nurse's role.
    I would never want to work with a nurse who didn't think being a CNA first is of any benefit. The nurses I have worked with who never worked as CNAs have beyond ridiculous expectations and think they're overqualified to help wipe someone's behind. On the other hand, nurses who were CNAs previously understand what it's like and have a more practical, collaborative mindset. I really can't stand Nurses who think they're better than CNAs and that's the vibe I get from this post.
    proudcna likes this.
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    I volunteered in an ER and on a Med/Surg floor for experience. It worked.
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    Quote from cbOmahaNE
    I would never want to work with a nurse who didn't think being a CNA first is of any benefit. The nurses I have worked with who never worked as CNAs have beyond ridiculous expectations and think they're overqualified to help wipe someone's behind. On the other hand, nurses who were CNAs previously understand what it's like and have a more practical, collaborative mindset. I really can't stand Nurses who think they're better than CNAs and that's the vibe I get from this post.
    Apparently, your vibration meter needs calibration because no more do I consider RNs better than CNAs than I consider MDs better than RNs... just different jobs, different responsibilities, and different skill sets - each of which can be learned and mastered without having experience in the other.

    Your post makes me chuckle because my aids loved me, precisely because I'm a hands-on nurse who never dumps the scut work onto my aids.

    I stand by my original statement, however, that I see no particular benefit of being a CNA prior to nursing school.


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