Need advice and any info. would be great!

  1. I'm 30 years old and seriously looking to change careers. I thought about going into nursing when I was in my early 20's but somehow ended up in computer drafting and design (Oil & Gas). Anyway, I'm sick of the lack of work and being stuck in Houston the rest of my life just isn't what I'm looking for. I think nursing is something I would enjoy and would like any advice you would like to give me. Here is a list of things I'm curious about.

    1. Opportunity for travel.
    2. Money.
    3. Job stability.
    4. School (2 years or 4 years?) (What to look for in a school) (Difficulty) (And anything else you would like to add)
    5. This might sound stupid but do you need a extremely strong stomach? I think I do but then I have never seen anything extremely bad.
    6. Your overall opinion of nursing and anything else you would like to add.

    Also a little info about my situation.
    I'm a 30 year old married man with no children.....yet. My wife is a golf pro who loves to travel and works almost every weekend. We both want to move out of Houston in the next 3 or 4 years. Anyway, I guess that's it. Thanks a lot.
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  2. 20 Comments

  3. by   NurseWeasel
    Lots of opportunity for travel if that's what you like (sounds like you do). Pretty decent money if you're willing to work at hospitals doing evenings & weekends (shift differential), travel, or be an agency nurse.

    If you haven't already, get started on your Anatomy & Physiology, Microbiology, and Chemistry classes because they'll be needed as pre-requisites for almost every nursing program. As to 2 vs. 4 year from what I hear it doesn't make much difference (25 cents an hour in my area) once you've graduated.

    Strong stomach not a requirement, although it helps. Even the most squeamish generally get over it once they've had a little education & experience. You'll learn how to clean up bodily emissions from both ends of the body, give shots and start IVs, and assist with surgery. Once you have the training and experience, you'll find yourself more drawn to the "gore" (as in: Oooh, look at that, the bone is poking out! Fascinating! I wonder how they'll put it back together) than freaked out by the blood or imagined pain.

    I love the medical field. I started out in it over 20 years ago and rue the day I got talked out of my BSN and talked into a business degree. I'm currently chomping at the bit to get back into it, classes start in January. I've trained and worked as a medical assistant and am so happy that I'm finally going to get the degree and do the work that I really want (RN).

    I wish you the best. If it's what you want, go for it. Even if it takes you half a lifetime, lol.
  4. by   2banurse
    Originally posted by BSC14
    I'm 30 years old and seriously looking to change careers. I thought about going into nursing when I was in my early 20's but somehow ended up in computer drafting and design (Oil & Gas). Anyway, I'm sick of the lack of work and being stuck in Houston the rest of my life just isn't what I'm looking for. I think nursing is something I would enjoy and would like any advice you would like to give me. Here is a list of things I'm curious about.

    1. Opportunity for travel.

    "you can look into being a travel nurse"

    2. Money.

    "according to the posts on the BB, travel nursing does provide a good salary"

    3. Job stability.

    "Yes, I believe that with a nursing degree you'll have a stable Job future."

    4. School (2 years or 4 years?) (What to look for in a school) (Difficulty) (And anything else you would like to add)

    "You can do either a 2 year ADN or a 4 year BSN"

    5. This might sound stupid but do you need a extremely strong stomach? I think I do but then I have never seen anything extremely bad.

    "I do feel that you will need a strong stomach vs. a weak stomach, but hopefully over time, things may get easier to view"

    6. Your overall opinion of nursing and anything else you would like to add.

    Also a little info about my situation.
    I'm a 30 year old married man with no children.....yet. My wife is a golf pro who loves to travel and works almost every weekend. We both want to move out of Houston in the next 3 or 4 years. Anyway, I guess that's it. Thanks a lot.
    I just made a couple of notes above. As I am only working towards a RN degree myself, I can't be too exact. I'm sure that you will get more indepth information. The best of luck!

    Kris
  5. by   sbic56
    I can see why you would want to get out of Texas and a career change to nursing would easily accomplish that for you, but I hope you are considering nursing for the right reasons. If you have a real desire to work with people and you don't mind working your tail off for less than you are worth, nursing may be a fit for you. I guess what I am saying is that I would never suggest anyone go into nursing for the money. There are other types of rewards, but they aren't monetary. Job security....well that is an obvious perk. Yes, you do need a strong stomach, but unless you are particularly squeamish, you'll probably do OK. Most of us become desensitized over time to the amount of bodily fluids, excrement and open viscera we are presented with. It sounds like you must have a degree already. Perhaps when the economy stabilizes you may want to go back to something in the field you are in? Nursing would be a good choice to get you through these less than wonderful economic times, if that is the case.
  6. by   BSC14
    NurseWeasel


    Thanks so much!!

    Hey can you elaborate on the money?
  7. by   BSC14
    "It sounds like you must have a degree already. "

    No I don't. I just got my foot in the door and ran with it. Do you not feel like the $$ is very good?
  8. by   BSC14
    I bring home about 40 a year now.......so how does that compare to nursing?
  9. by   sbic56
    BSC14

    The money is OK...as a new RN you can expect to make about $15- 20/hr depending what part of the country you work. I think that for the amount of responsibility nurses have and as hard as we have to work some days, being short staffed and all, we do not get paid nearly enough. That is perceptual though.

    Once you get experienced enough to travel...most agencies want at least a year of clinical experience under your belt...you can make much more. Hang around here and you'll learn alot!
  10. by   BSC14
    sbic56

    Thanks.
  11. by   BSC14
    Anyone else like to share a opinion?
  12. by   memphispanda
    1. Opportunity for travel.
    There are travel nurses. You can do a google search on travel nursing to get more information, and there is a forum here for travel nurses. I am a student, but I have seen that there are pros and cons to doing travel.
    2. Money.
    Depends on the area. Some places pay RNs $15/hour, some pay $25/hour. Check www.salary.com for more information, but don't take their numbers as set in stone, a few people here have said the numbers are off for their area. I know they are low for my area.
    3. Job stability.
    My impression as a student is that the job is as stable as you make it for the most part. As the nurse, you will be the one who gets burned out or bored working in a certain area and you may go looking for something else. As long as you are GOOD at what you do and don't endanger patients, etc. then I think you can probably stay at a job for many years if you choose to.
    4. School (2 years or 4 years?) (What to look for in a school) (Difficulty) (And anything else you would like to add)
    The length of school is a very personal choice. We all have different reasons for choosing the path we have. I am in a hospital diploma program. In my area, pay is the same for all RNs regardless of degree. Advancement opportunites are more limited for non-BSN holders, but there are exceptions to that. I have a BA in another field, so that helped make my school choice. Nursing school is hard. There are 4 here, and they are all hard, although one is easier than the others...it also has a much lower NCLEX pass rate. Look at the programs offered in your area and usually one will stand out as meeting your personal needs.
    5. This might sound stupid but do you need a extremely strong stomach? I think I do but then I have never seen anything extremely bad.
    I would imagine it would depend on the area you want to work in. You will have to be able to stand odors, sores, infections, poor hygeine, etc no matter what area you are in. The thing that really bothers me is detached body parts. I haven't seen any of those yet, don't plan to work ER or trauma, so hopefully I won't have to deal with that.
    6. Your overall opinion of nursing and anything else you would like to add.
    Nursing is a very underrated profession. Most people have absolutely no idea what a nurse really does. It isn't all about taking BPs, temps, and giving shots. You have to be a quick thinker, you have to be able to talk to people when they are sick and hurting, you have to be able to manage your time well so you are able to take care of the 8 very sick people assigned to you. It isn't just about money and job stability.
  13. by   BSC14
    "It isn't just about money and job stability."

    I understand that and I hope you didn't get that impression from me. However these things are also important if you plan on having a family.
  14. by   rebel_red
    Hi BSC14

    I am in a similiar situation. I hold a B.S.W. and was a social worker for many years. When my son was born I sold antiques at various shops by renting stall space to support us. When he was older I entered retail.

    At 39 I realized I needed to be back in a "traditional" helping profession, but what, and would it be sufficient to support my son and myself. I realized given my background nursing might be a viable option.

    Like you I was concerned. Did I have a strong enough stomach? So to find out I took a job (and a huge paycut) to work as a nursing assistant at a local long term care facility. I found out, yes I can handle code browns and huge sacral decubs (not due to poor nursing at our facility, I hate to say it, but resident returned from hospital with this mammoth decub.) Our lpns and rn's are wonderful teachers, especially when they know you are interested in pursuing a career in nursing, they allow us to assist as is appropriate with different procedures. I absolutely am sold on nursing now. Will be trading in my BSW for a BSN through a local four year college. Having the BSW means I don't have a ton of undergrad work to accomplish. Only the pre-req's for nursing.

    Obviously, you don't have to take this radical of an approach. Just my .02.

    Good luck in whatever you decide. I hope it brings you joy.

    Tres

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