Is it the right move? (long post)

  1. Hi all, Im new here, and I wanted to get a few opinions about nursing. I was caught in the great hi-tech boot-a-thon last May, after being laid-off for the 2nd time in 3 years, and very little hope of finding a job I decided it was time for a change in careers. My girlfriend is an RN (Med\Surg), she has been in nursing for 2 years now, and hates her floor (patient ratio issues),
    I talked to her about me giving nursing a shot. After reviewing the ins and outs of what my girlfriend went through when she was in school and now that shes a nurse, I decided to give it a try. So after 5 years of not being in school I signed up for what few classes I could get as a returning student at the local community college. I was really excited about the thought of a new career, until I hear ever every third person around me talking about getting their pre-reqs out of the way for nursing!
    Well Im now in my 6th week of school and I keep hearing these young people talking about the nursing program ARGGHHH! I remember how much competition there was for the scant 45 slots in the program when my girlfriend was trying to get in, she almost drove herself nuts trying to get in, but it paid off. My worry is that I go through the pre-reqs (4-5 semesters worth) and dont get into the program, or worse yet get in and dont pass, or pass and fail the NCLEX, then theres the fact that nursing is predominately female. Im almost 34 years old and just afraid I guess of the whole thing, but I'm pretty sure its what I want to do, the projections for emlpoyment are great, and it is a fairly stable field to be in. Any words you all can offer would be a great help, Thanks for taking the time to read my post. --Lloyd--
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  2. 13 Comments

  3. by   delirium
    Lloyd,
    All I can say is good luck.
    I can't offer you any real insight into the practice of nursing because I am still a student myself, but I remember feeling the way you felt, and I think you'll be fine. Having a significant other as an RN is a big help to you, because you know more of the reality of nursing than some of your classmates.
    If this is what you want to do, go for it.
    Take care,
    Reb
  4. by   roy_d
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  5. by   delirium
    You're welcome.

    If you have any questions about nursing school, I might be able to help you. But I tend not to speak on subjects I know nothing about, so can't help you with the daily grind of nursing.

    Now if you were to ask me in a year, I'm sure I'll have lots to say.
  6. by   xantha31669
    Roy since I am a student as well I can't speak to the role of the nurse quite yet, but i can give you some advice as far as school goes. The schools really tend to look at A & P as a good indicator of how you will do in the much more difficult area of nursing. In nursing not only do you need to know the facts you need to apply them as well. You probably know this because of your girlfriend though.

    I will be 34 next month and I am by far not the youngest person in my class. Some times it is better to have a little experience in the world.

    I will say this though, if your only going into nursing for the job security and semi-decent paycheck, I would think real hard about it. Have you thought about getting a CNA and getting a little hospital experience to see if that is a good environment for you. It also helps alot in those first few weeks of clinical to be comfortable with pt care. (This is from someone who didn't do it and saw the difference it made for other students.)

    Good Luck!

    Lori
  7. by   roy_d
    Thanks for the advice. Yes I have worked in a hospital although not in a patient care situation, and I worked in a rest home (doing laundry of all things), I actually was thinking of nursing 8 years ago as my career path, I knew alot of nurses and I like to help people, I just got discouraged by hospital politics and went into computers (what a mistake, wishing with all of the 20/20 I can muster I hadnt). I am planning on getting a CNA license this spring, I agree that hands on with patients is very valuable.
  8. by   renerian
    I hadall my pre's done and had to wait another year for a seat. I had to threaten the college with an age based discrimination lawsuit to get in. They kept telling me the only seats available were for new high school grads. I told them I was contacting a lawyer and I had a seat the next day. We started out with 500 students in our nursing class and ended up graduating 250. I graduated with 80 hours. It helped me when I got to the BS/MS degree program I finished as I had a good head start.

    Go for it.

    renerian
  9. by   researchrabbit
    I didn't have any trouble getting in, but the application process is so anxiety producing that I was uncertain whether I'd be accepted -- I think it is meant to be discouraging. There were 200 applicants for 45 slots. But one of my friends was #10 on the alternate list and also got in, with a "C" average.

    Apply to school while you are doing pre-reqs -- if you can, and depending on your school's policiies -- at my school, those who were on the waiting list were told that they would move up in the waiting list the longer they were on it.

    You would be surprised at how many people drop out before they ever get to the nursing program.

    Don't worry about the competition; worry about you. Stay excited and keep your grades up! 5 years out of school is nothing, really. Those study skills will come right back.

    I graduated from school at 41 and my age didn't seem to matter to most instructors or students. And it hasn't mattered to potential employers, either.

    Good luck!
  10. by   memphispanda
    Remember too, that the reason you hear so much talk about the nursing program is that you are taking classes required for the nursing program. It just makes sense that people around you would be going in that direction. They may be ahead or behind you also, so they may not be competing for the same class that you are tyring to get into, or they may be taking the classes with plans to go to nursing school elsewhere.

    Age isn't much of an issue. I saw an article somewhere that said the current average age of nursing students at graduation is 31. You will most likely find yourself in the company of many people your age. I'm 31 right now and there are many people in my program younger and older than I am (I actually think I am the only young 30something in there--most are 19-24 then 38+).

    You can do it! Good luck, work hard!
  11. by   babynursewannab
    Let's not forget your gender concern, either.

    Don't let it bother/worry you. Quite frankly, all of the guys I know who are nurses or are in school with me are doted on constantly. Teachers love the different perspective. And, when it comes to hiring time, prospective employers are eager to "diversify their workforce."

    All of your concerns are normal and we all have gone through them or are currently going through them. Chin up. You'll do great.
  12. by   roy_d
    Thanks all, encouraging words really help. Good luc kto all who are in my situation, and those who are further along
  13. by   vaughanmk
    The schools in my area aren't even filling teh slots avaliable. In fact, the school I'm at hesn't even had enough applicants to fill the slots. There is NO competition among students. You apply, if your grades are right, then you get in. Then again the shortage has hit us really really hard.
  14. by   k123456
    Message deleted. No response necessary.
    Last edit by k123456 on Mar 8, '04

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