Help! I'm not a quitter, but...

  1. I was wondering if anyone had any advice or knowledge that might be helpful to me.. I recently got accepted into two Entry-level MSN programs. I have a previous BA degree and I will start in the fall..

    I need help deciding whether or not it is smart to quit after recieving the RN license or continuing. This might determine which school I choose..

    The first school awards a second BSN after 14 months and we are able to sit for the NCLEX. After passing, we continue another 16 months and recieve a MSN and are termed "Clinical Nurse Specialist." The second DOES NOT award a second BSN, but we sit for the NCLEX after 18 months, and continue another 18 months for the MSN after passing the NCLEX. We also are a CNS after completion.

    My problem is, I want to stay a bedside nurse for awhile. I know there is going to be no difference in pay when I graduate b/w an ADN, BSN, or generic MSN degree.. I love school #2 and the faculty is awesome. I think that is really important. However, they do not award a second BSN. If I were to choose not to continue with the rest of the program, work for several years, then decide what I want to specialize in...would that hurt me because I don't specifically have a BSN but will have an RN and BA from another field????

    I am desperate to know if it matters, otherwise, would it be smart to accept school #1 and recieve a second BSN and then work??? I have never been a quitter, but I would like to possibly prevent myself from any extra schooling.. As of right now, I don't know what I will do when the time comes. I have never been a nurse, but I have heard from MANY people that a generic MSN will do me no good. I do not want to become an administrator or teacher.

    Sorry so long! Any advice would be GREATLY APPRECIATED!!!!!!
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  2. 12 Comments

  3. by   allthingsbright
    Sounds like you have answered your own question--if you don't want to administrate or be a teacher, then you probably will not finish a MSN program--so yeah, you need to cover yourself for the future and get a BSN!

    GL on whatever you decide!
  4. by   Lisa CCU RN
    what do you mean a second BSN?
  5. by   nskoog
    I already have a Bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice. I just want to know if getting an RN without it being a BSN is going to matter because I already have a Bachelor's degree.. When you have a previous BA and you are entering nursing, they call it a "Second BSN."
  6. by   Lisa CCU RN
    I thought it would just be called a second bachelor's degree, but I see what they were trying to say.
  7. by   traumaRUs
    My concern would be about school #2. If you have no BSN, indeed no educational degree or diploma for the RN, how will you sit for the NCLEX? Then, also does this school #2, are you able to stop after the RN part instead of continuing on?
  8. by   nskoog
    We will fulfill the pre-licensure requirements to sit for the NCLEX in the first 18 months. All of us have previous BA degrees. This is an EL-MSN program but I know some people will quit after receiving their RN and not finish the whole 3 year program (the MSN portion). If they do, they will still have a BA degree and a diploma for the RN, but it will not specifically be a BSN. Does that make sense?

    In a nutshell, school #1 is going to award us the BSN after the first portion of the EL-MSN and school #2 is not because they do not want us to quit.
  9. by   traumaRUs
    Got it - so from school #2 you would get a nursing diploma. At least with that you could proceed onwards later if you wanted to. I think unless you want to go the full MSN route, I would just start and stick with it. If you quit and then want to go back later, you might find it hard to get your credits accepted at another school.
  10. by   nskoog
    Thanks so much for the advice
  11. by   3rdcareerRN
    As someone with a prior, non-nursing bachelor degree, let me say this:
    A non-nursing BA is called "an irrelevancy" by hiring managers. I have never, ever seen it called a second BSN.

    Of course, that is just my experience at multiple hospitals in two states.

    I'd go for the BSN. After I got mine, it opened more doors.
    Good luck with whatever direction you choose.
  12. by   anonymurse
    Quote from nskoog
    My problem is, I want to stay a bedside nurse for awhile.

    <snip>

    I have never been a nurse, but I have heard from MANY people that a generic MSN will do me no good. I do not want to become an administrator or teacher.
    Yeah, well there are tons of advanced practice gigs where you're still one-on-one with patients. And if these schools don't offer that education, maybe you don't really want to hang with them.

    On another tack that has nothing to do with your question: I wonder why there aren't advanced degrees in bedside nursing. If there had been, the whole field of PA would never have been born.

    Imagine a degree that loads a knowledge-hungry nurse up with tons of great pathophys and pharm stuff and just enough management to make a great charge or manager and no more.

    I mean, I know folks with PhDs in clarinet, french horn and other instrumental performance. It wasn't like they felt all there was to learn was depleted after their BFA. And it wasn't like they wanted to change jobs to conducting or educating. Their art is performance.

    Why can't bedside nursing be viewed as the huge art it is with no limit on expertise and artistry?
  13. by   subee
    [QUOTE=anonymurse;2227609]Yeah, well there are tons of advanced practice gigs where you're still one-on-one with patients. And if these schools don't offer that education, maybe you don't really want to hang with them.

    On another tack that has nothing to do with your question: I wonder why there aren't advanced degrees in bedside nursing. If there had been, the whole field of PA would never have been born.

    Imagine a degree that loads a knowledge-hungry nurse up with tons of great pathophys and pharm stuff and just enough management to make a great charge or manager and no more.

    I mean, I know folks with PhDs in clarinet, french horn and other instrumental performance. It wasn't like they felt all there was to learn was depleted after their BFA. And it wasn't like they wanted to change jobs to conducting or educating. Their art is performance.



    Hey, just because you got an MSN doesn't mean that you HAVE to leave the bedside or move further away from the patient than charge nurses. Lots of nurses have MSN and work with patients in the unit or do first-line management. Maybe not in the smaller town, but lots of grad students in the big city hospitals. No one is going to FORCE you to leave the bedside but you might get chosen for precepting or any other damn thing that someone thinks your credentials would be a plus.
  14. by   Bonnie Nurse
    Well, this looks simpler the more you look at it. School #1 = 30 months with BSN midway. If life throws you a curve, you can do MANY things with the RN BSN you will have at that time. You may find your perfect niche at bedside or elsewhere, but there's no doubt that you'll get more mileage from the BSN than from just the RN, should you have to stop along the way. 30 months is a LONG TIME. You may decide that you want a different type of MSN by the time you finish these first 18 months or so. You may decide you don't even need this MSN. School #2 just seems, in my humble opinion, to be fraught with opportunities for derailment. #1: money/time investment for the extended time in school. Remember real cost is the cost of school AND your lost income while you are in school. Add that up and then mix yourself a martini because you'll need it. I also completed a second degree program. It was 18 months long and it will take me almost 8 years to make up the lost income. I don't regret it at all, but those are the undeniable financial facts. #2 This second school where the faculty is so nice may be great, but the fact remains that when you finish half the program, your RN is still below the BSN. The BSN might open doors for you that the plain RN won't. And why can't they manage to grant the BSN in about the same amout of time that the other school does? Could it be that they hope for more, hmmm..... REVENUE!!!!! So, my vote is to go with school #1. Get a bigger bang for your buck halfway through and then still have choices!

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