Do you feel more people are entering nursing only to become APRN's?

  1. I am not a nurse yet, but I'm an EMT, have worked in and around the hospital, and I am currently finishing my last two prerequisite courses before applying for ABSN programs. It seems like 90% of my current classmates in nursing prerequisite courses, along with other prospective nurses I've worked with, are entering the nursing profession with the goal of become a Nurse Practitioner or CRNA.

    Do you, especially those already working as nurses, feel a lot of new graduate nurses are entering nursing for the sole purpose of becoming an APRN? I feel like since APRN's are gaining more popularity, people are entering the nursing field to become an APRN and not a "nurse", in lieu of becoming an MD/DO or PA. I'm not saying more education is bad, but it seems like people want to be an NP, not a nurse, if that makes sense. Which leads me to believe (and I know it's been discussed before) a huge over saturation of APRN's is in the near future.

    Thoughts? Again, I'm not a nurse yet, so I could be completely off base.
    Last edit by SurfCA40 on Sep 15
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  2. 197 Comments

  3. by   Sour Lemon
    I'm in Southern California and have noticed the same thing. It seems like every new grad goes straight to NP school, as at the very least, aspires to. CRNA seems like a loftier goal ...don't hear people talk about that much except for on this site. I have wondered where they're all going to end up working. It doesn't seem like there's that much of a demand.
  4. by   elkpark
    You're not off base. And, even if they aren't going into nursing with the initial goal of entering advanced practice, if they are attending a college or university that also has a graduate program in nursing, they are getting told nearly every day that they should aspire to becoming an APRN.
  5. by   not.done.yet
    Yes, there is a trend for this right now. APRN school is becoming almost cliché, with many low quality programs opening up and churning out new grads. CRNA is more difficult, as you need ICU experience to get in and it is highly competitive.

    These are some of the highest paying nursing positions, so it makes sense that there are people who want to take advantage of that. I will refrain from opening the can of worms that the rest of my opinion on this would bring. If you do searches you will find many recent threads about APRNs and lack of experience.
  6. by   SurfCA40
    Quote from Sour Lemon
    I'm in Southern California and have noticed the same thing. It seems like every new grad goes straight to NP school, as at the very least, aspires to. CRNA seems like a loftier goal ...don't hear people talk about that much except for on this site. I have wondered where they're all going to end up working. It doesn't seem like there's that much of a demand.
    Yeah, that sounds about the same as my experience. I'm in Southern California too. Most people talk about entering nursing school to become a nurse practitioner. A few mention CRNA.

    Quote from elkpark
    You're not off base. And, even if they aren't going into nursing with the initial goal of entering advanced practice, if they are attending a college or university that also has a graduate program in nursing, they are getting told nearly every day that they should aspire to becoming an APRN.
    That's an interesting take on it too. I'm not in that position yet, but depending on what ABSN program I get into, I'll be interested to see if they push the topic.

    Quote from not.done.yet
    Yes, there is a trend for this right now. APRN school is becoming almost cliché, with many low quality programs opening up and churning out new grads. CRNA is more difficult, as you need ICU experience to get in and it is highly competitive.

    These are some of the highest paying nursing positions, so it makes sense that there are people who want to take advantage of that. I will refrain from opening the can of worms that the rest of my opinion on this would bring. If you do searches you will find many recent threads about APRNs and lack of experience.
    Makes sense that people want more money, but at the same time, money isn't everything. I hope most people becoming APRN's are doing it for the right reasons, but I'm sure some are only looking at dollar signs.
    Last edit by SurfCA40 on Sep 14
  7. by   SaltySarcasticSally
    I'm in the Midwest and we have the same trend. Many have difficulty finding available preceptors. Plus, with the ease at which some can obtain advanced degrees without much hands on experience, has been off putting for some.

    I have no interest in it personally as a recent new grad, heck I'm irritated that I have to get a BSN when my associates suits me just fine.
  8. by   llg
    Yep. That is what I am seeing. Most of the students and new grads that I work with are using their BSN's and hospital staff nursing jobs as quick stepping stones to a grad school for an APRN role. It's contributing to my hospital's turnover problem and making us question whether we really want to hire the "best and the brightest" new grads anymore -- because most of them have no intention of doing hospital nursing for more than 1-3 years.
  9. by   Gizmopup1
    I am a nurse who is currently going for my ARNP. (But I am not a new grad - I have been around the nursing field for several years.)
    I don't think there is anything wrong with wanting to aspire for higher in your career, whether it be to become a nurse manager or an FNP, or any other higher job. And if someone has the time, the opportunity, the desire and the finances to continue their education, I think that should be applauded, not discouraged.
    Will there be a saturation point in the future? It is possible, but I doubt it. There are too few schools offering FNP degrees, FNP degrees are not cheap or easy to get, and like Salty pointed out there are not enough people wiling to be preceptors. (I posted about this yesterday.)
    I think there are a lot of young, ambitious people out there dreaming big. Maybe not all of them will reach their goals, but there is no harm in dreaming!
  10. by   operations
    Honestly I think this is the future of healthcare., even medicine. Nursing is an evolving career. I believe it will intertwine more with medicine in the future and the two will become two sides of the same coin rather than the nurse being considerate lower in hierarchy.

    I want to be a bedside nurse for a while and then decide if APRN is right for me. I chose nursing over going to med school cause it makes more sense to me to not jump in as a clinician until I get experience in being in a role where I can apply my knowledge and understand the disease processess by experience. Then decide if I will love a more advanced role. I want to do that now and don't want to spend years of my life studying first only to decide medicine is not for me.

    It's strange however that this is the exact reason I am going into nursing and one of its strengths, yet some choose to skip experience which I believe is doable but really unwise. How much more confident will you be if you can first gain good "gut instincts" and thus can quickly rule out alternatives?

    I also truly believe people still tend to be ashamed of nursing. It's an attitude that it isn't a valid career. Just a stepping stone to something "respectable". Oh your an Np? I guess you are smart then, because nurses aren't smart.

    The fact that anyone would choose to be a nurse rather than a doctor if they could really baffles society. And that leads people to feel like they can't just be a nurse. They have to go do APRN and quick if they are truly "smart" . Or that if they are in nursing school, they just couldn't cut it pre med classes. Sorry, not true. I did fine in my chems, physics, and calc thank you. I did them and deserve to feel good about it. And I deserve to feel good about nursing too.
  11. by   AJJKRN
    Quote from Gizmopup1
    I am a nurse who is currently going for my ARNP. (But I am not a new grad - I have been around the nursing field for several years.)
    I don't think there is anything wrong with wanting to aspire for higher in your career, whether it be to become a nurse manager or an FNP, or any other higher job. And if someone has the time, the opportunity, the desire and the finances to continue their education, I think that should be applauded, not discouraged.
    Will there be a saturation point in the future? It is possible, but I doubt it. There are too few schools offering FNP degrees, FNP degrees are not cheap or easy to get, and like Salty pointed out there are not enough people wiling to be preceptors. (I posted about this yesterday.)
    I think there are a lot of young, ambitious people out there dreaming big. Maybe not all of them will reach their goals, but there is no harm in dreaming!
    What flavor was your koolaid "will work for preceptor hours"

    Crushing student loan debt seems to be the dream of many these days...
  12. by   AJJKRN
    Quote from llg
    Yep. That is what I am seeing. Most of the students and new grads that I work with are using their BSN's and hospital staff nursing jobs as quick stepping stones to a grad school for an APRN role. It's contributing to my hospital's turnover problem and making us question whether we really want to hire the "best and the brightest" new grads anymore -- because most of them have no intention of doing hospital nursing for more than 1-3 years.
    Yep, these nurses often need to have extended orientations now because most are not ready to practice out of school from of the lack of hands on experience not gained in clinicals, but also want quick access to the entity's tuition reimbursement and for the organization to provide free preceptor's for grad school.
  13. by   RNperdiem
    This is a new trend in nursing. When I graduated in 1998, the talk among students was what department we wanted to work in. I work in a big university hospital and see this NP\CRNA goal more and more with the newer people. The ICU I work in provides very desiriable work experience for anyone looking for NP or CRNA, so maybe I see more of this than others.
    Nursing is often a backup plan for people who don't make it into med school, and advance practice is the alternative.
  14. by   KatieMI
    Quote from SaltySarcasticSally
    I'm in the Midwest and we have the same trend. Many have difficulty finding available preceptors. Plus, with the ease at which some can obtain advanced degrees without much hands on experience, has been off putting for some.

    I have no interest in it personally as a recent new grad, heck I'm irritated that I have to get a BSN when my associates suits me just fine.
    Unfortunately, the useful skills learned at bedside nowadays often have very little to do with what is required on provider's level. When you run for 12 hours documenting, doing tasks supposed to be done by everybody else and "providing excellent customer service" instead of assessing, analyzing and thinking critically, it may look like you're doing great job as a bedside RN, but it reality it pushes you down, not up.
    Last edit by KatieMI on Sep 15

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