Working as a PCT/CNA is a great way to get good patient care experience. However, if you are a good worker, almost any hospital job will get your foot in the door. I worked in ER registration during nursing school, and then my director gave me a great recommendation and helped me get into OB as a new grad RN. One of my good friends worked as a unit clerk and was hired in right away while other new grads without hospital work experience were struggling to find jobs. Working in any job in the hospital gives you a good idea about how things work in a hospital and give you a perspective you wouldn't have if you have never worked in a hospital. A LOT of people in clerical and support positions in my hospital are studying to be in some healthcare field, and you get a lot of support. If you work at least 20 hours a week in a hospital, you'll get tuition reimbursement to pay for school. While it is difficult to work during school, having your foot in the door is worth it. I did feel a little jealous of other students who didn't need to work and could concentrate fully on school. However, at work, I knew SO many people who were in nursing school working as techs, clerks, etc. that there was a lot of support. Due to family circumstances, I had to cut my work hours back to just one 8 hour shift per week during school so I didn't get tuition reimbursement any more, but I still had a good work track record and my foot in the door.