for those of us who want to be an NP to escape the horrors of bedside nursing

  1. I would strongly encourage you to thoroughly research the profession because so many of us think being an NP and getting their MSN or PhD or whatever is gonna open this magical, new world for them in their career, and I think it can for a specific individual and meet one's career goals, but @ the end of day, nursing is still nursing. I would suggest to any new grad in nursing if they want to be an NP to get @ least 3 years of practical experience in the hospital, or 2 in the hospital and 1 in an office/clinic setting before going to school. Also, I would ask them to write down why they want to be an NP and research the history of the NP role/current legislature w/NPs in their state or region/issues re: NPs vs PAs/pay scales of NPs vs RNs in their state and see if their goals and desires w/wanting to be an NP matches up w/what is going on w/NPs right now and possibly the future. Also I would tell that person to find an NP mentor and ask her about her education, experience, suggestions, etc.Nursing is one of those mythological professions that people think it's one thing and it's something totally different. Also, I don't think you're clinically equipped to function as an advanced practice nurse w/only one year experience under your belt. And people argue that MDs don't 'get years of experience' 1st, then get trained in school, then start practicing, so why can't RNs/NPs do the same. But it's not exactly the same. You can go to school in some cases for just 3 years and be an RN, then one year and be an NP, then boom you're out seeing patients independently. To be an MD, there's 4 years of undergraduate, then 4 years of med school, then 4-8 years of residency, and yes you are a 'doctor' and you are functioning as such, but you're being overseen by experienced MD. It's not until you're finished w/your residency that you're 'let loose' to see patients indepently. To compare that w/NP training is not comparable in my opininon. And I totally believe in NP rights, prescriptive privelege, etc, but NPs aren't mini-MDs. I hate when people say that, "aren't you just a step away from being a doctor?" I'm like, no,even though you have some prescriptive rights and can see patients, you are a nurse, it's a totally different profession. But @ the end of the day, I think w/alot of folks, being an NP sounds good to people, so they go after that. I have talked to some NPs and have been trying to research it......because I didnt want to be as hasty as I was with being a nurse.....I hope those of us considering going back for Masters to be and NP or whatever to research the profession thoroughly because it is way more responsibilty than being a nurse.......we all thought nursing was this magical world........I dont mean to be negative but being an NP may not be all its cracked up to be. I only have been nursing for about 9 months and had planned on going back for NP right when I got out of school, then I said I would get a year in first, then I said 2, now I am rethinking it alll..........everyone is different but I want to make sure I know what I am getting in to and if I will even like it before spending 2-3 years in school and more loans, fat books, time away from family and friends......just a thought. I didnt listen to experienced nurses warn me about the real world of nursing, I am trying to listen and be more careful the 2nd time around! Because it has been rough these past 9 months........and I am currently looking into nonhospital nursing jobs after my year of experience is up. Life is too short to be miserable, depressed, tired, stressed, and to be treated like sh*t for pennies.
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   llg
    While my attitude about the nursing profession is not nearly as negative as yours, smileysenior, I strongly agree with your advice to thoroughly research the different career paths within nursing before making a decision. There are a lot of misconceptions out there -- and many people are making big investments in education without doing their homework first.

    Nursing can be a great career. However, it requires that you find the right "fit" in terms of a specialty and a role and in terms of finding a good employer. If you navigate the career paths well, there are lots of good opportunities out there. But you have to use career planning skills to develop a career that will be satisfying.
  4. by   smileysenior
    I am not being negative, just trying to be honest! Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I just want us newbies to realize that we need to do a research with regards to career moves. I didnt do this with my current job. The nurse recruiter glossed over many details and lied about others. All I thought about was the money and being a "real" nurse. I ignored th advice of seasoned nurses about the reality, brushing them off as bitter and negative without even trying to consider their viewpoints. Just trying to share a little insight that I am using. We need to consider the viewpoints of all without labeling one as negative.


    Quote from llg
    While my attitude about the nursing profession is not nearly as negative as yours, smileysenior, I strongly agree with your advice to thoroughly research the different career paths within nursing before making a decision. There are a lot of misconceptions out there -- and many people are making big investments in education without doing their homework first.

    Nursing can be a great career. However, it requires that you find the right "fit" in terms of a specialty and a role and in terms of finding a good employer. If you navigate the career paths well, there are lots of good opportunities out there. But you have to use career planning skills to develop a career that will be satisfying.
  5. by   juan de la cruz
    I see where you are coming from smileysenior. You are still very young and there is still so much for you to experience. Hopefully, you find the right career path in nursing for yourself. In the meantime, I hope you get to practice as a nurse in a setting or specialty that you will truly enjoy. That way, when you are ready to pursue advanced education, it will be in something you wish to build your experience upon and this will surely be satisfying for you. I myself, took a long time before pursuing my MSN but looking back, it is one of the best career moves I've made.

    However, I am not one to disagree with some who are pursuing a fast track to advanced practice nursing. People are individuals. There are students who are older and have graduated from other degrees before they realized that nursing is what they want to do. Some of these individuals are also interested in pursuing advanced practice nursing and have the full understanding of the what these roles entail. I think many of them possess the maturity to handle the demands of an NP role. If they are not, I hope the rigors of going through graduate school will make them realize that they have made a mistake.
  6. by   traumaRUs
    Smileysenior - I'm sorry that you are so disillusioned so early in your career. What works for one nurse, might not work for the next. No shame in that. For instance, you will find loads of threads about being an L&D nurse. I simply stand back in amazement that anyone would want to work with some whiney woman demanding pain medication for a "painless" labor (kinda a nonsequiter, hunh?). However, I loved the ER and found the chaos joyful and happy and quite my cup of tea. I know though that folks' eyes glaze over when I start in with war stories.

    To each his own. That is the good thing about nursing - if we don't like what we are doing, we can move on to another unit, another hospital, pursue more education.

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