Considering a mid-career change into nursing - Yikes! - page 2
I am a 44 year old guy who works in financial services. I have an MBA from a top-rated school and make a good living. The problem is that I don't find it satisfying. Several years ago my parents... Read More
Oct 5, '07NHGUY,
I'm in the exact same position as you, and I've decided to go for it. 42 yrs old, MBA-CPA with 20 yrs exp, lost a parent to cancer this year, and have decided that life is to short to be doing something that you don't love.
Look into a second-degree bsn or absn program. It'll get you in and out quicker, and many hospitals will pick up any student loans you use to pay for the program.
And as nurses, you and I will do more good and provide more service to society than we ever could've in Finance.
Oct 5, '07I'm 48, been a nurse for 26 years. I work the ER, and recently accepted a position as a clincal instructor while working on my master's in nursing ed: so second career for me too (simultaneously, lol).
In my clinical group, only one person is under 30, two are 48 (we were all discussing midlife changes, ), and one is older than all of us.
If you like people, even at their worst, go for it!
Oct 5, '07My mother was 53 when she went to get her LPN, It was hard work, but she survived and she is happy that she did, and now she's looking forward to retiring (turning 60 this year) and she will be able to still have a part time or per diem job at a very good rate$$$. I wish I could do it to!!
Oct 5, '07Go for it. I was 52 when I started the ADN program and I will be 53 when I graduate next May. "It's never too late to be what you might have been."
Oct 5, '07I'll be 44 the end of this month and I have one more month of an LPN program.
In the beginning, there was one student 5 years older than me, but she couldn't put up with the disrespect and attitudes of one teacher, so she quit. Now I'm the oldest by a good 5 years, but I look better than most of the other students in my class, in my opinion, because I never smoked, sunbathed or gained or lost tremendous weight.
Most of the other students in my class are obese and smoke and are much younger than I am. I felt like the odd-ball in the beginning and still do. I do not have the desire to be "friends" with most of them and really don't like being a mother-hen figure.
I get the best grades in the class most of the time, and I have never been late or missed class or clinical.
I am, however, less experienced in the clinical field because I never worked as a CNA or tech, which most of my classmates have. I am a published author, previous casino manager and even managed a rock band once. So, I have a huge, varied history behind me. I have traveled to various places in the world and raised one daughter on my own and have another 10-year old daughter, and am happily married.
I also decided to branch into nursing because I want to make a difference. I volunteered at a nursing home for two years and enjoyed it so much I thought I ought to get paid! However, clinicals have shown me that "real world nursing" and "volunteer" opportunities aren't really the same.
There are times when I ask myself why I did this, because school is tough. The instructors are my age and younger and sometimes it's hard to keep my mouth shut, but I have to give them their respect. There is more a sense of urgency for older students, I think. I can't fail - it's not an option, and sometimes that anxiety causes me to fail a test due to test anxiety.
I can't say if it will be worth it or not. I read statistics that suggest nurses die younger than any other profession! I can see why: long hours, pretty-high-stress, and lack of exercise and proper nutrition. (Most of the nurses I've seen do not get a lunch break, and eat something fast, and do not feel like exercising when they get off.)
Anyway, that's my perspective from the point I am now. I hate being in school, unpaid 12-hour clinicals get me down, too. But by December I"ll be sitting for NCLEX and a new chapter will begin....
Oct 6, '07That's a funny story. Sometimes people can be so clueless, can't they? Thanks for taking the time to write to me.
Oct 6, '07Thanks for the reply. Sounds like we are in the exact same place. The program I am looking into is an ADN program, and since I have a BS and MBA, they are going to waive several of the required classes. Plus, the school is located in the town where we have our summer home, so our summer home will become my permanent home when I start school. So if I do well on the entrance exam and get accepted, then it should all work out pretty well.
Thanks again and best of luck to you.
Dec 18, '08This really caught my attention! I am 38 (soon to be 39) and have led an extremely unfulfilling career in corporate america! I have also been toying with the idea of making a mid-life change to pursue a nursing degree. It seems so daunting when looking at the required courses (and yes - some of my old college credits will still apply) but it looked like it will take me forever to finish! I put together a 5 year plan to start part time and then save enough money to take the final year off and take as many classes as I can to finish. I thought I was alone in this "pursuit of happyness" but sounds like many people are fed up with corporate jobs and are looking for something that can really touch peoples lives! I look forward to checking this site for others that maybe can help motivate me and others looking to make this leap!
Dec 20, '08I started college for the first time ever (yikes!) fall 2006. During core ed, instead of changing my planned major (nursing), I decided I wanted a BSN. So, 2 1/2 years down, and 1 1/2 years to go.... I turned 46 this year. (gasp!) What I have discovered is this:
No offense to the youngbloods, but 18-21 yr olds do not know how to study or manage their time very well. They also whine a lot. Bear in mind that I have grown children. I am accustomed to hanging out with this age bracket, but I am not one of them. I cannot behave as if I am. Even though nursing students have a more serious attitude toward study, since obviously they have to work really hard to get accepted, they can be cranky and unrealistic more often than not. This sets me apart in ways that traditional students are never challenged with.
Prior management experience, life experiences, adult relationships and the ability to drink alcohol responsibly also set me apart and as the oldest class member, I have learned to stand alone. My husband reminds me that I have the maturity of the professors without the education and authority. This explains why classmates ask me study questions via text messages throughout the weekend. I chose the next oldest female in class as my lab partner and pal around with the next oldest person in class, being male. They are both about 35 and have decided to change careers mid-life. You are not alone, just outnumbered.
I am looking forward to a career I finally enjoy lasting well past age 65. What can be more worthwhile than that?
Dec 20, '08Definitely go for it! There are several people in the program that I'm in that are in their late 30's to late 50's. it's worth it if you'll be happier in life. 2 years sure go by quick in nusing school! Good luck
Dec 20, '08NHGUY.... I was 45 when I started. I graduated out of the RN program at 48. I am currently soon to be 50 years old. I have never been happier. my sister started this year at age 46. we really have something in common now. Good luck in your endevors.
Dec 20, '08I say go for it! I was recently accepted and am set to start my direct entry program here in January...at UNH Durham to be exact! I've been working in research for the past few years and wanted to get out of the lab. I want to interact with and help others. And like you, I want something more fulfilling.
My cohort is a complete mix. We have students my age all the way up to yours. The program was designed for those who are looking for a career change and/or have a degree in a field other than nursing. You are not alone in doing this...there are many many more just like you.