How can you work and go to school?

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  2. Many people work while in school ... many are successful while others struggle. For those who are successful juggling the two, how do you do it? Please share your thoughts and any tips that you may have.

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    Last edit by Joe V on Mar 9, '16
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    About Brian, ADN

    Joined: Mar '98; Posts: 15,432; Likes: 16,403 founder; from US
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  4. by   silverbat
    When I went to PN school, I worked 40 hours a week, went to school 40 hours and drove 20 hours a week. I had 2 young teenagers and hubby that helped with house stuff. I graduated 3rd in my class and worked my butt off. I slept when I could, studied daily and made time to do things with hubby and kids as often as I could. I studied in the living room, so at least I was NEAR them and available. Wasn't easy, not at all, but when you want something bad enough, you'll do what it takes! and I knew nursing would give me a good job, with a decent salary and I needed both. I don't know that I would work that much again, but at the time, I did what I had to do!!!!
  5. by   babowman3RN
    I worked Friday, Saturday and Sunday as a CNA. 12h shifts. That's considered full time. And went to school M-Th. With an hour drive one way. You do what you have to do. Simple as that.
  6. by   Caliber86
    I was not successful in trying to juggle both. I have much respect to those who have.

    I already have a B.S. in another field and I was working over 40hrs a week for a pharmaceutical lab. I had the opportunity to attend an RN program (ADN); no way in hell I'd pass. I tried to juggle both the first semester; huge mistake in my part thinking the first part of the program shouldn't be so challenging. I was wrong; that first semester dropped you on the ground running. I still remember that first semester... gives me nightmares now and then.

    Anyways, I passed, but not with the grades I know I could have earned. I didn't want to jeopardize my future as an RN, so I quit. Luckily, I had the support of my parents and girlfriend. I recently graduated (Spring 2013) and took the NCLEX-RN (just yesterday!) for the first time. I have the good Pearson Vue pop-up message, but waiting on official results.

    I've seen students dropped from our program trying to juggle it with a part-time, let alone a full-time position. But, I've also had the honor of meeting incredible individuals who worked full time, went to school, and had kids to care for at home - and they still kicked my ass when it came to the exams (I called them my "super moms").

    Like the comments before me, "you do what you have to." If it becomes too much too handle, decide what is your priority. Hopefully, you'll find the support you need if it comes to that.
  7. by   pippinbm
    I am managing ok so far. I am taking night classes 3x a week 6p-10p and then heading to work at 10:30p-7a. I study while the residents are sleeping. When I do not have class, I work 12 hr shifts. It works out ok. Im not overly tired and my homework gets done..
  8. by   NurseRose84
    I'm only in my first semester of nursing classes, but I'm working full time as a nursing care tech on a critical care unit that is perpetually short staffed. It hasn't been too hard so far, but we are only 4 weeks in! My shifts are 7P-7:30A, and I usually work Thursday, Friday, Saturday, but with 2 weddings in my current schedule, I'm having to work a couple of Mondays and every Sunday. Once October rolls around, I'll be back to my normal schedule.
    Although I would love not to have to work full time while in school, with our mortgage, car payments, and step-son's needs, it's simply not feasible. Of course, working in a hospital also gives me an edge against other nursing students in my area as we're saturated with nursing programs. My hospital likes to promote and hire from within, so I'm hoping to stay on my unit once I pass my NCLEX.
  9. by   StrawberryEssence81
    I was working 30-40 hours a week before I started PN school. Now I work 20, the minimum I need to keep my benefits. I'm a single mom, so I have to work. Like others said, you do what you have to do.
  10. by   SinglemomLPNstudent
    My Mornings start at 4am and i have to commute 50 miles to get to work then i have some time to study and do homework then pick my daughter from school and then make it to class which is 6-10p 4 nights a week. I work 40 hours a week, and I drive over 600 miles a week. I get about 4 hours of sleep a day on avergae. Its hard but This is what I really want to. I hope I can make it through.
  11. by   lholmes85
    I work too

    Friday, Saturday and Sunday I work twelve hour overnight shifts as a Pharmacy technician in a long term care pharmacy.

    I have classes three days a week with at least one of them being a 9 hour day.

    I also have a second job doing commercial cleaning 5 nights a week.

    Study as often as I can... I have managed to keep a 3.72 GPA.

    Rough, but it will all be worth it.
  12. by   psullivan95
    This is what you do...
    Macaroni and cheese, ramen noodles hot dogs and beans. Simple meals with paper plates. Nutrition can wait 9 months. Laundry, dust, dishes, crumbs on the floor, nieces and nephews birthday parties, all take a back seat. Immediate family, work, and school are your only priorities.

    Focus straight ahead and keep repeating "I can see the light at the end..."
  13. by   Ptrv12
    I worked full time when I got my BS in psychology and when I attended nursing school. I worked full-time worked w-sun and had Mon tues off for clinical days. I would attended school from 8-4 and work 5-11 or 12am and on weekends worked long shifts. Needless to say I didn't get much sleep and sacrificed family time. Like another post said I too would study in the living room so I could at least be close to my 3 children and husband. But when you want something you do what you have to do to accomplish it. Instead of looking at it like I was exhausted and I had a long way to go to graduate I took it a day at a time, and time flew by. My advice is don't over stress, the key is being well organized and plan out study times. In psychology we learned that research shows if you study in small increments at a time each day rather than trying to cram for an exam you retain more information.
  14. by   gianegizelle
    just enjoy all the things
  15. by   tln9901
    I have received my Associates of Applied Science degree in Surgical Technology, while obtaining this degree I went to school full-time and I worked full-time. I am starting nursing school in 3 months and I am currently working 3rd shift as a Surgical Tech at a Level 1 trauma center fulltime 70 hours a week and I am going to try to keep working this fulltime job while going to school fulltime. However, my current plan is to switch to 1st shift.