Nursing as We Age..... - page 3

I was curious as to what the career plans are for nurses on this section of the forum. These are concerns because aging is enividable and some of us don't have enough retirement money to retire. ... Read More

  1. by   Spidey's mom
    Quote from traumaRUs
    I think "retirement" means different things to different people. I'm 49 and nursing is my second career (for last 15 years). I will probably never really retire unless forced out by health problems. It is important to remember that those of us in my age bracket and younger won't get the help provided to our parents from Uncle Sam. We must depend solely on our own earnings to continue our lifestyle. So...saving is a major issue for us.

    Personally, I've worked LTC as an LPN and didn't care much for it - busy from the second you clock in till you leave and yes, its physical.

    My best advice is to further your education. WHile management, advanced practice and teaching are all mentally challenging (thus keeping us young), it is less physical than floor nursing.
    I'm 50 and became a nurse a little over 9 years ago. I'm at a crossroads as well. My first college experience was to major in social work and I was one year shy of my Bachelor's when I had to drop out. Went back to get an ADN in my late 30's. Now I find I'm disillusioned with hospital nursing and actually I'm not working right now but going back to school for my BSN. But sometimes I lay in bed at night and wonder why I'm going back to school at 50 and going $15000 into debt?

    Personally, I have always felt that as a nurse I should further my education and get my BSN. And I'm interested in the public health side of things - maybe related to teens. I'm also interested in Faith Community Nursing - took a class last summer and am in the process of presenting this to my congregation.

    My husband is self-employed - therefore no insurance. We are paying for COBRA right now.

    I dunno what I want to be when I grow up. This is a good thread - let's keep it going. I need more ideas

    steph
  2. by   llg
    I am 52 years old and feeling every year of it in my knees and hips -- even though the vast majority of my career has been away from the bedside in staff development and CNS positions. I couldn't image being on my feet all day as a staff nurse again now, much less in my 60's. We all like to think that we will stay strong and healthy "forever," but statistics show that most of us don't. Research shows that many people retire earlier than planned due to the physical stresses of their jobs. Others retire earlier than planned because of changes in their work environment that they choose not to deal with.

    Financially, I am OK as I started saving for retirement at age 26. Some years, I have saved more than others, but except for a few years when I was in graduate school, I have always put money into my retirement accounts and never taken any money out. However, just in case I live to be very old ... I don't want to retire too early and run out of money. I worry more about health insurance coverage than I do about cash for food, etc.

    My hope is to ease into retirement by switching to part time work sometime around age 60 -- earn enough to pay my bills without having to tap my retirement savings and earn health insurance coverage, but probably not earn enough to add a lot to those retirement accounts. I am hoping that I can keep up that part time employment until medicare kicks in at age 65. As for starting to take my Social Security, I'll play that by ear as the time approaches.

    Complicating things is that many hospitals (such as mine) do not allow many people in leadership positions to work part time. They expect full time or not at all. I am hoping I will be one of the lucky ones who will be allowed to stay on a part time basis when the time comes. An alternative I am seriously considering is to seek a full time teaching position soon to get some seniority in that environment. Schools are usually more amenable to having part time faculty.

    So now ... I am working full time for a hospital and teaching one course per year at a local university. I am trying to get the best of both worlds -- the high income of the hospital, but getting my foot in the door for future teaching positions. At some point, I hope to move into teaching as my primary employer. I'm just not sure when.
    Last edit by llg on Nov 25, '07
  3. by   llg
    I, too, love the MSN/MBA combination for anyone interested in nursing management postions. It provides the advanced education in nursing plus the advanced business skills.

    As for the role of the BSN. It's not just for management positions. A lot of clinical positions are also either "BSN required" or "BSN preferred." Roles in infection control, community health, patient education, etc. often require a BSN. Many such positions also prefer an MSN and I think we will be seeing more of that in the future.

    Too many nurses plan for their careers based on the status of things 10 or 20 years ago, forgetting that their career will be 10, 20, or 30 years in the future. They think, "I know a nurse with only a Diploma (or ADN or whatever) and she has such-and-such a position." They forget that that person got that job 5 or 10 years ago. In 20 years, the requirements for that same job will be probably be higher. The trend in nursing over the years has been and still is for more education. So, people thinking ahead should play it safe by assuming that more education will be needed for advanced or "higher level" jobs in the future.

    An ADN plus a BS in something else is not the same as a BSN. Yes, right now, a lot of people with that combination are able to get some jobs in management. But if you look at the trends, it's risky to count on having a lot of flexibility with that combination in the future. For example, the Magnet program requires that mangagers have a BSN. They recognize that not 100% of the managers will have it, but the fact that they state that preference indicates the direction of the trend.

    The ADN is not going away as an entry-level nursing degree. But if you want some sort of advanced position in nursing ... you will need a nursing degree that covers more than just the entry level nursing content -- unless the historical (and current) trend reverses, of course.
  4. by   Spidey's mom
    There seems to be two threads on this issue . ...maybe a nice mod can merge them??

    steph
  5. by   TonyFl
    llg,

    what did you get your graduate degree in?

    Quote from llg
    i am 52 years old and feeling every year of it in my knees and hips -- even though the vast majority of my career has been away from the bedside in staff development and cns positions. i
    Last edit by TonyFl on Nov 25, '07
  6. by   Tweety
    Quote from TonyFl
    Hi Tweety...sorry about your feet problem.

    Are you saying that if you have a BSN....you have more options for-non-bedside jobs?

    What if you have a Business degree and a AS in nursing?
    Yes, there are non-bedside jobs that require a BSN such as in education and or management, or at least are "BSN-preferred" .

    I have a friend that had a business degree and had experience in accounting management. He got an ASN and then went on to become a director. So an ASN and a non-nurisng degree can get you places, but a lot depends on your work history as a nurse and your reputation as a nurse.
  7. by   ASSEDO
    I'm going to catch a nice single old man right before he goes on the Vent and see if he will marry me. That is my retirement plan!
  8. by   llg
    Quote from tonyfl
    llg,

    what did you get your graduate degree in?
    my msn is in perinatal nursing with a minor in nursing administration. that was a long time ago, back in the days before schools offered a cns track. but the perinatal part was geared toward preparing people for cns roles. i got an official minor in nursing administration, but i also took some electives in nursing education.

    my phd is in nursing. that degree does not specify a specialty. my focus though, was on research methods, philosphy, and theory. my dissertation focused on the philosophy of technology in nursing.

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