One simple question...

  1. Hi! I just had a simple question I thought maybe you guys could answer. I'm just graduating high school this year and I've been thinking about a career in nursing. I've applied to University for a 4 year Bachleors Degree and everything...Now my question is...How long does it take before you become a RN? what do you have to do to get there?
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  2. 16 Comments

  3. by   LauraLou
    If you major in nursing, when you graduate you take the NCLEX, a test to qualify as an RN. When you pass, you are an RN!
  4. by   Katnip
    If you plan to go to a university, then the first two years will usually be the prerequisites; the science, math, English, and electives. Most schools require that you then apply to the nursing school separately when your prereqs are almost done.

    Your junior and senior years will focus on nursing curriculum. After you have diploma in hand, you're a nurse, but you must take the NCLEX exam in order to become licensed to practice in your state. You can pretty much choose the date you will take the exam. A couple of weeks after that, if you passed you will have your license and be a registered nurse.

    A lot of hospitals will hire new grads as graduate nurses and start your orientation before you get your license, and will retain your employment as long as you pass the NCLEX. For me, that was too risky because if you fail, most hospitals release you from employment. Not exactly being fired, just let go.

    Good luck to you.
  5. by   *nervousguy*
    so if I'm 18 right now, I'll be a registered nurse by the time I'm around 23 or 24? (Time is kinda important to me, the sooner the better)

    and now I have two other questions.... Do you need to do extra schooling if you want to become a Surgical Nurse or do you get on the job training for that? Plus I live in Canada, does that change anything or is it basically the same thing as the U.S?
  6. by   MyReign1
    Quote from *nervousguy*
    so if I'm 18 right now, I'll be a registered nurse by the time I'm around 23 or 24? (Time is kinda important to me, the sooner the better)

    and now I have two other questions.... Do you need to do extra schooling if you want to become a Surgical Nurse or do you get on the job training for that? Plus I live in Canada, does that change anything or is it basically the same thing as the U.S?
    Yes. you could definately become a nurse by the time you are 23. You could also go the ASN (Associate in nursing) route. It is a two year degree, but it generally takes most people a little longer. You generally do not have to get extra training for specialty areas. You will be trained in the hospital. I am not certain about Canada but I believe it may be the same. If not there is a section for Canadian nurses on this board. You could go there to make sure. Good Luck!!

    Just curious, being that you are so young, why is time so important to you?
  7. by   suzanne4
    Depends on which province that you live in...............some are now requiring
    a BSN for initial licensure. One is Ontario..............probably most will within the next two years.

    Hope that this helps.............
  8. by   orrnlori
    What do you mean by surgical nurse? Are you talking RNFA or what?
  9. by   prmenrs
    I'll bet he doesn't know what "RNFA" means, orrnlori.....
  10. by   jbro
    i graduated at 22yo with a BSN, worked for two years in surgical/trauma icu, and now i'm back in school to become a nurse anesthatist(2 1/2 yrs), if you start right out of highschool you can finish in four years with a bachelors, you can finish in to years with an associates degree and be an rn, they make the same salary, but you have to have a bachelors degree to go back for you masters ie. nurse practioner or nurse anesthatist

    Quote from *nervousguy*
    so if I'm 18 right now, I'll be a registered nurse by the time I'm around 23 or 24? (Time is kinda important to me, the sooner the better)

    and now I have two other questions.... Do you need to do extra schooling if you want to become a Surgical Nurse or do you get on the job training for that? Plus I live in Canada, does that change anything or is it basically the same thing as the U.S?
  11. by   suzanne4
    Again as stated in my earlier post, Canada is starting to require a BSN as the entry degree on several provinces. This changes things for him, depending on where he is living..............
  12. by   JSB
    Nervousguy,
    If time is important, you can go to a community college and get your associates degree in nursing, and take the boards (NCLEX) to become an RN. You will get paid the same entry level salary as an RN with a Bachelors degree. If you still want to get your bachelors, you can bridge to a BSN. Many colleges offer RN to BSN programs completely online or almost completely online, and this may take as little as 1 - 2 years, and you could work as an RN at the same time and hav a decent income. You can also bridge from an associates degree RN to MSN through many programs, and it works in the same way - online for the most part - then you would be able to be a burse practitioner, etc without actually getting your BSN first. You go right from ASN to MSN.
    About being a surgical nurse. If you mean being an OR nurse, this does usually require an extended orientation time in the hospital. Many hospitals will make you pay $3000 to $4000 for this extra training, and some hospitals will train you for free, but in exchange you have to sign a 2 year contract that begins after your orientation (which may take about 9 months). If you break the contract, you have to pay back the $3000-4000 immediately. Also, at our local hospital, if you work in the OR, you immediately get paid $1-2/hr extra over the normal entry level salary while you are orienting for 9 months. After orientation, you get $4-6/hr extra over the entry level salary your peers in different departments will be making (plus differentials). Many hospitals do require their OR nurses to take a lot of call, but on the other hand, you work pretty nice hours - at our local hospital, they work Mon-Fri from 7A - 3P (plus call), no holidays or weekends (except if you are called in). This may go without saying, but you have to be ACLS and PALS certified (Advanced Cardiac Life Support - Adult & Peds) to work in the OR. Hospitals will generally provide these courses for you.
    Hope this is helpful, and good luck in your endeavors. Nursing is a wonderful field to get into!
  13. by   JSB
    Oops - sorry nervousguy, I didn't address the fact that you live in Canada. My post is referring to nurses in the US - I don't know how it works in Canada.
  14. by   walterrn
    Here's a thought. Go to the university, get your BSN, join the military for six years and they'll pick up that school tab.

    Quote from *nervousguy*
    Hi! I just had a simple question I thought maybe you guys could answer. I'm just graduating high school this year and I've been thinking about a career in nursing. I've applied to University for a 4 year Bachleors Degree and everything...Now my question is...How long does it take before you become a RN? what do you have to do to get there?

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