Nursing or Speech Pathology

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    Hi there! I am trying to make a decision between Nursing and Speech Pathology. I already have an MBA as you can tell from my user id, and 10 years of sales experience, including 5 in pharma. I don't want to do sales anymore as it is unpredictable...I want a real career.

    I feel that a Bachelor's in Nursing will be a good fit with my MBA, but I don't like the idea of working crazy shifts, being on your feet all day, and the relatively low pay. With the Nursing degree I don't really have to be a nurse....I could go into medical sales or something else. But again, that's sales. Overall though the nursing degree is broader than speech pathology and could be applicable to many areas. The Bachelor's degree is a 16 month program and costs $16,000. I could eventually get a Master's but the thought of another 2 years is exhausting!

    A Master's in Speech Pathology will pay better, and I would still be helping people. However I want to work with adults, stroke victims, etc, so the idea of working with kids, playing with dolls, to get them to pronounce words etc is dreadful to me! That eliminates half of the patient population! I also would not work in the school as the pay is totally ridiculous/low. So I would want to work in a Nursing Home, Home Care, or Hospital, (although I hear it's hard to get on with a hospital). They pay is btter as an SLP, starting at $60k in a medical setting. With my MBA, I think I could get a management position overseeing the therapists in the nursing homes, etc. This program is 24 months long and costs $40,000.

    The final piece is that I would be starting a program next year, when I turn 35. Time is important to me now as I am still single and would like to get married, have a family, etc. I want to start a new career as soon as possible.

    If anyone has suggestions for another route, please let me know! People tell me that I should be able to get a job with my MBA, but all I have ever done and am qualified for is sales. I don't even know what else there is! I am at a crossroads in my life and appreciate any advice you have to offer! I'm afraid to make a wrong decision!
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  4. 6 Comments so far...

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    In my opinion, nursing is a more stable (yet flexible) field than speech pathology. For one thing, there are many more nursing jobs than speech pathologists jobs, especially if you have a narrow field of interest. Don't be too sure about the pay differences, either: I started out a few years ago as a new grad RN (with an Associate's Degree) making $52,000 a year in a mid-sized city!
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    MBAnursearizona, I can relate to what you are going through! Long story short, I went to a four yr university and major in Speech-Language Pathology. I've always had the desire to be a RN. During my junior year, I was a Speech Pathology Intern @ a very large magnet hospital. It was a great experience and I had the opportunity to learn alot. However, I still had that itch to see RN behind my name. I then decided to finish my SLP degree and pursue nursing. After graduating with my B.S. in SLP, I applied to an accelerated BSN program and got accepted. The program was 18 months for a BSN. You had to have a NON-NURSING bachelor's degree in anything. I graduated from nursing school in May 2009 and began working as a nurse in Jan 2010. It is sooooooo much work!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I enjoy my job, however, if I had to chose b/t the two, I would lean a little closer to Speech Pathology. I do NOT regret going to nursing school by any means, however, nursing is serious labor. You work HARD for $23.00/hr. Some days are not as bad, then some days, you want to go home and cry. Each and every person that I tell that I switched from SLP to nursing, their response is, "WHY?!?" I wish you the very BEST in your decision making!
    Fiona59 and josinda421 like this.
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    Congrats on your MBA! However, the medical field is different when comes to degrees. I'm not sure how far your MBA would get you when it comes to management positions in nursing. Most employers want you to have degrees in nursing(i.e. BSN, or MSN) I'm not exactly sure how it works with Speech Pathologists but its probably the same(unless you are trying to work in finance or the business aspect of health care). Direct patient care is different from sales, budgets,etc. The positions in upper management usually require experience as they should. The salaries for RNs and speech pathologist are not that different. Nursing does have more variety soo you have a better chance of finding a position that you love. However, if your heart is not into health care I don't think you will be happy either. If your heart is in it and you really want to help people then you are making the right decision! I think you are the only one who can decide which route you should take you really have to look at the pros and cons! Hope this helps a little
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    I say go into SLP and if your still itching for nursing....then do it. But I bet you you would want to do SLP after experiencing what the nurses go through. good luck
    Fiona59 likes this.
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    Thanks everybody!~ Yes, I do want to help people so I know I am going in the right direction. My mom and sister are nurses and they say it's hard. I guess I was just thinking if I were tired of being a nurse, I could easily go into the business world, maybe work for a pharma company again or even an insurance company. If I get bored being an SLP then I may not have as many other options for employment, although I think it would be less stressful than nursing, and an SLP who has been doing it for almost 30 years said I could make up to $47 an hour!! Decisions, decisions! Thanks so much again for your thoughts!
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    I'm pretty much in the same boat. I'm in my undergrad (already have a bs in healthcare management) working toward being a SLP and I've just about decided to apply to nursing school. Nursing is so limitless and doesn't seem it could ever get boring. I do not want to work with children and that really limits the jobs, settings I can be in as a SLP.