When to go back, and what for? Advice needed

  1. I haven't posted to this forum in a long time and, upon finding it again, thought perhaps I could attempt to gain advice again here.

    I was a nursing student. I completed the first year of a two-year RN program and failed the third semester by one point. I had planned on simply going back the following year and retake the course but my husband lost his job and I was forced to begin working full-time. Though he drew unemployment for a year, it was, naturally, not enough to allow me not to work so I would be able to concentrate on nursing studies, do my clinical hours, community projects, etc.

    Missing out on returning that year, I hoped again to return the following year but again his umemployment status prevented me from registering in time to get into the course. I would have had to reregister in May; he finally got a job in August of this past summer.

    This makes two years that I've been out of the nursing program. I've since learned from the director of the program that as I didn't return in a two year period I would have to retake the peliminary NLN exam but would have to retake the first year clinical nursing courses as well. I'd be starting all over again!

    Now, mentally, I could do it. Financially, I could not.

    So this leaves me with the question: What do I do?

    I've been considering applying for the LPN program instead. This takes a year to complete (three straight semesters) and I could work as an LPN for a year, give myself the opportunity to get us back on our feet somewhat in the money department and then take a weekend RN course offered by another campus for LPNs. I keep telling myself, "After all, all I ever wanted to be was a nurse! I didn't care what kind!"

    Yet, I do. In the long haul, I do.

    I want to work in home health one day, particularly in hospice and RN is the only way I know to accomplish this.....this goal that I feel strongly is my calling.

    I hope I've typed this out eloquently enough. I'd truly love to know what any of you would suggest.

    I yearn daily to work as a nurse. I'm presently working as a nursing assistant and I wouldn't take anything for the learning experience it's provided but I can't even begin to describe how badly I want to do more in the way of nursing interventions.

    Your thoughts?
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   Daytonite
    I see the practicality of going the LPN route, especially since many employers offer tuition reimbursement which would be a great help to you. However, in so many places, the hurt for RNs is so bad that there are scholarships and many financial awards being offered. Have you checked with local hospitals, hospital associations and state nursing associations to see if there are any monies being offered to people who are willing to become RNs? Some hospitals are willing to pay for RN tuition in return for a work committment from you. If your financial situation is right you will be able to get loans to get through school. You can find employers later who will pay back some of those loans in loan forgiveness programs. Try contacting your state board of nursing and see if they can point you in the direction of some of the programs offering money that is available to help students with the financing they need to get through RN school before making the final decision to go the LPN route.

    Somthing that you might have overlooked. . .I don't know if the state of Virginia allows this, but in some states, once you have gone a certain distance through an RN course of study you can sit for the LPN boards so your schooling hasn't been totally wasted. I'm not sure that you could have done that in Virginia, but it's something to keep in mind.
    Last edit by Daytonite on Oct 29, '06
  4. by   PurrRN
    Doesn't life suck sometimes? I empathize with your situation and hope that you can find the path that leads you to your goal. Just like the post above I would suggest that you immediately research all your financial aid options. If however, nothing fits within your financial/familial scope of "do-ability", there is NOTHING WRONG with doing something that IS within your controll such as going to LPN school. If it were me and I had to wait several years before I could go to RN school or could go to LPN school now, I would go to LPN school. It would make me feel like I was progressing towards my ultimate goal. Just don't forget what that ulitmate goal is afterwards and continue to work towards your RN completion. Juggling financial responsibilities, family, and school is so hard and I hope you are able to find a solution that fits for you. Good Luck and don't give up!
  5. by   allthingsbright
    Quote from Catma63
    I haven't posted to this forum in a long time and, upon finding it again, thought perhaps I could attempt to gain advice again here.

    I was a nursing student. I completed the first year of a two-year RN program and failed the third semester by one point. I had planned on simply going back the following year and retake the course but my husband lost his job and I was forced to begin working full-time. Though he drew unemployment for a year, it was, naturally, not enough to allow me not to work so I would be able to concentrate on nursing studies, do my clinical hours, community projects, etc.

    Missing out on returning that year, I hoped again to return the following year but again his umemployment status prevented me from registering in time to get into the course. I would have had to reregister in May; he finally got a job in August of this past summer.

    This makes two years that I've been out of the nursing program. I've since learned from the director of the program that as I didn't return in a two year period I would have to retake the peliminary NLN exam but would have to retake the first year clinical nursing courses as well. I'd be starting all over again!

    Now, mentally, I could do it. Financially, I could not.

    So this leaves me with the question: What do I do?

    I've been considering applying for the LPN program instead. This takes a year to complete (three straight semesters) and I could work as an LPN for a year, give myself the opportunity to get us back on our feet somewhat in the money department and then take a weekend RN course offered by another campus for LPNs. I keep telling myself, "After all, all I ever wanted to be was a nurse! I didn't care what kind!"

    Yet, I do. In the long haul, I do.

    I want to work in home health one day, particularly in hospice and RN is the only way I know to accomplish this.....this goal that I feel strongly is my calling.

    I hope I've typed this out eloquently enough. I'd truly love to know what any of you would suggest.

    I yearn daily to work as a nurse. I'm presently working as a nursing assistant and I wouldn't take anything for the learning experience it's provided but I can't even begin to describe how badly I want to do more in the way of nursing interventions.

    Your thoughts?
    Oh wow, do I understand the financial aspect of going to school. Right now my family is making a HUGE sacrafice financially for me to finish. I will be done in December. Thank God!!

    Can you still get back into your old program? They held my spot (when I moved away) for 3 semesters!! Check back with them and see what they say first. If not, then the LPN is a good idea-you could take your RN in two steps. Then you could work while working on the RN portion--which would be stressful but I know lots of people doing it!!

    Also, I second what Daytonite said about sitting for your LPN. If you finsihed two semesters successfully, many states will let you sit for the NCLEX-PN. You just need to contact your Board of Nursing and see what the Nurse Practice Act says about liscensing.

    Whatever you do, don't give up. I have been through a lot of crap and am still persuing nursing. At this point, nothing but getting run down by a mac truck is going to stop me.
    Last edit by allthingsbright on Oct 29, '06

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