WAS GETTING INTO NURSING SCHOOL HARD FOR YOU? DID THIS JUST MAKE THE SHORTAGE WORSE?

  1. I just started to recall how hard it was for me to get into a nursing school!!!!!!!!!
    After graduating from high school, I had a difficult time trying to get into a college nursing program. The colleges that I applied to only had enough room for only 120 students each school year. A great deal of students that tried to get into the program were turned away. I was one. They went for the students that were on a waiting list to get into the program. The list was over 600 applicants long.
    This was not uncommon. The next college I transferred to only accepted so many applicants as well. I can not recall the NUMBER, but I know it was EXTREMELY LOW!!
    Yet again, I was turned down. And it was not for the grades I had obtained through highschool or from my other college that I was turned away. There were just not enough spots in the program. WHY, WERE there not enough spots?????????
    My QUESTION is how many other frustated students out there have experienced this same problem? How many of those fustrated students gave up on nursing because it was too hard to get into and moved onto another field????????????? If there are a great amount of people out there that have been turned away from obtaining a DEGREE IN NURSING, NO WONDER WE HAVE A NURRSING SHORTAGE!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Does anyone have a similiar story???
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  2. 24 Comments

  3. by   LauraRN0501
    Hi StaceRacer1,

    In my program, they are not turning away anyone right now because the number of applicants is so low. Seven years ago when a friend of mine applied to the same program, she was put on a waiting list because they had too many applicants for the number of spaces available. I don't know how it is in other schools at this time, butI know enrollment in nursing schools is way down and I bet that it is not exceedingly hard to get into them provided you don't have a GPA of 0.

    Laura
  4. by   delirium
    This is an interesting thread. I'm a nursing student, and while I am "only" in an ADN program... ours is very competitive and people are on waiting lists for years... (if you believe all the hype). The rumors scared the bejesus out of me. So did the counselors, telling stories about women who've been trying to get in for several years but still can't.
    Well, I got in on the first try. If you have a significant amount of academic achievement and you're a warm body, I don't see how they can justify turning people away. My school accepts 80 students into the program, and while there are those that are refused, they are usually the students who haven't completed the prerequisites, or didn't get the lowest acceptable score on the ACT, or fell below the mark in some other areas.
    Just my two cents.
    MsP
  5. by   StaceRacer1
    YEAH, I graduated in 94'. It was about the same time that your friend tried to get into nursing school.
    My point is that 7 years ago has impacted today's nursing shortage!!
    Look at how many people were turned away!!
    Those people that were turned away, may have gave up and chose to go onto something else. (Even though nursing may have been their dream.)
    The schools that turned me away in 1995 and 1996 had a great amount of eager students willing to do anything to get into the program!!!! WHO KNOWS WHAT HAPPENED TO THESE STUDENTS!!
    THEY PROBABLY CHOSE TO GO INTO A DIFFERENT HEALTH AREA. MEANING THAT WE LOST THAT MANY MORE NURSES!!!!!
  6. by   TLynn
    --------I first tried to go into college for a nursing degree. I was told I had to have so many prereferences and I could go into the next class. I decided to double up so I could get in the sooner the better. I was then told that I couldn't do that and I would have to wait a whole other year to be considered. Wanting in so bad I went in through a local Technology school, and getting in there was tuff to say the least. First a test must be taken to get accepted into the school!!! Once taken you had to apply to the nursing program. Over 300 people applied and only one class of 35 per year!!! After that was accpeted you went through an extensive, to say the least, interview with all three instructors and the secretary. Tey drill you on family, outside obligations and plans if kidds get sick because you can only miss around 12 days of school in a whole year!!!!!!!! I learned from all my classmates that the harder they tried to get in the more determined and strong will that they would make it it made them. oever, what we need is hard admitance so they can weed out those not dedicated and more schools to accomidate the determined ones.
  7. by   Mito
    TLynn:

    In Canada a great number of nursing students are turned away for the following reason;they dont have the marks in high school courses.

    It is not the school who does the so called "weeding out" it is the students themselves. Any student who does their homework, studies for every test and does show up and participate in the clinical experience has a very good chance of achieving a passing grade in the program. All of the students who are failing im my class are lacking in one of if not all of these areas, and hence they are weeding themselves out the program.
  8. by   Mijourney
    Hi StaceRacer1. In the recent Senate hearings on CSPAN, I believe that I heard one of the Senators from a midwestern or western state indicate that the nursing schools in his area had waiting lists. In my area, I attribute much of the low nursing enrollment to a lack of qualified applicants. This has already been mentioned in a previous post. In my neck of the woods, the illiteracy rate tends to be high and in addition, many students avoid taking rigorous courses that would prepare them for college. Therefore this cuts down on the number of people we could have in these programs. In addition, the funding is not there for nursing training. Nurse educators are retiring or going into another job.

    I'm aware that more funding is supposed to be legislated for nurse training programs which should increase the number of nurse educators as well as students. Discussion is also centered around preparing interested high school and junior high school students for nursing.

    Hopefully, it won't be hard for qualified applicants to get into nursing school in the near future.
  9. by   123lisa
    I tried to get into nursing school around 1989 and was put on an extensive waiting list. I was told to fine another career, that I would never make it. I had a face to face with the Dean and she refused to allow me in. There were very long waiting lists. I was determined and they gave me one semester to prove myself. I made Dean's List and was one my way. I graduated in 1996 and by the year 2000 was a Director of Nurses. DETERMINATION WILL GET YOU SOMEWHERE!
    If there are waiting lists anywhere right now, our wonderful country should do something to start more schools stat!
  10. by   Zee_RN
    When I applied to nursing school (early 1990s), there were 1200 applicants for 120 seats. Last I heard, the same school had to offer the test three additional times to get enough applicants who passed the exam (in the greater Pittsburgh area).

    I was under the (mis?)understanding that there not enough applicants to the local nursing schools these days.
  11. by   StaceRacer1
    Like I stated before, it was in 1994-1995 when I tried to get into nursing school.
    I recall going to the nursing school director of one of the 4 year colleges which I attended to ask what I could do to get in. She said since there were so many applicants that were before me onthe list, I would have to sit out yet another YEAR!!!!

    My grades were not bad in high school, but my ACT test score was not what they could be. I recall another college, where the director sat and told me and my mother that I would get accepted that coming fall, if I got those ACT test scored up. Well, needless to say, I did get those ACT scores up, but I STILL was not accepted the following Fall. I was not sticking around for another year where they would take my $$$$$. I moved on to a different school!!! It was the diploma program which where I graduated from in 1999!!!!!!!

    I once thought about going to rub my RN LICENSE in that nuring school director's face that promised my mother and I would get in, if I raised my ACT scores and say ---- "Thanks for making me push even harder to get what I wanted!!!!!!!!! I am GLAD that I did not get my education from your school!!! It has made me very appreciative for the education that I have received and fought for. " I believe that it has made me very proud to be called a NURSE.
  12. by   NurseStudentFall01
    I attend a small community college and was admitted to start the ADN program this fall. There were 700+ applicants and they have 60 slots. They use a point system based on ACT scores, GPA, how many pre-reqs were completed and whether or not A&P and Micro have been completed. There are some other criteria, but I don't remember them all.

    It's bad that there's only 60 slots, but even worse, only half the class actually graduates on time. If a student makes anything below a C, they can't simply retake the class the next semester, as each class is only offered once a year. Also, I think a lot of people don't realize how challenging the course will be.
  13. by   Chuckie
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    Last edit by Chuckie on Jan 18, '03
  14. by   nurs4kids
    I graduated in '95, and yes, it was pretty difficult to get in when I started. The next year, my school increased their enrollment from 75 to 150. Their board pass rate went from 98% to 72% with this increase of students. So, that points to an obvious problem. The more students a school takes on, the less able they are to prepare nurses for boards and careers. Do we want the standards lowered? Is it worse to work with less, or to work with more incompetence?

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