Which program to apply to (LPN vs RN)?

  1. Hi, I have a question for you all... hopefully someone can give me some advice. I'm debating whether or not I should apply to 2 year RN programs or first doing an LPN program and then go to an RN program after graduating.

    Here's a little bit about myself. I have already graduated with a BA in Spanish from George Mason University, my gpa was a 3.16. While at GMU I took Developmental Psyc, English Composition I&II, Calculus, Communications, Intro to Psyc, 8 Credits of General Biology among other classes. I have taken NAS 161 and 162 (should transfer as A&P I and II and Microbiology) and Bio-medical Ethics at Northern Virginia CC. My gpa at NVCC is a 3.0. So I believe I currently have all the non-nursing classes for both RN and LPN programs out of the way (except for the ones that require chemistry).

    I'm determined to get accepted SOMEWHERE for Fall 2007. From what I understand, an LPN program would take me 1 year (since I already have several classes out of the way) and I would need to study an extra year (possibly 2) to become an RN. If this is the case I have no preference over going to an LPN or RN program, all that matters to me is getting into a decent program where I have a reasonable chance of being accepted. I am not even considereing BA programs because I don't believe my gpa is high enough. Any suggestions for PUBLIC Colleges in MD, VA, and NY would be very welcome. Thanks!
    Last edit by chikichiki17 on Jan 25, '07
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  2. 19 Comments

  3. by   PedsNurse322
    That's a no-brainer, go for the RN. More money, more job opportunities.
  4. by   SteveNNP
    RN....more money, increased autonomy, opportunity for growth, JOB SECURITY...
  5. by   chikichiki17
    Hi, thanks for the replies. My goal is to eventually become an RN, I'm just not sure if I would have a better chance of getting there by applying directly to an RN program or if it would be easier to get into an LPN program first (which in many cases is the same curriculum as the first year of an RN program) and THEN applying for advanced placement into an RN program the following year. If I do that it should take me between 2-2.5 years to become an RN, which includes 1 year in the LPN program... unless of course something goes horribly wrong, but I doubt it :spin:
  6. by   Lori RN_09_2b
    I'm in a BSN program so can't tell you from personal experience, but I have a friend that went the LPN to RN route (not really because she wanted to but because the only school she could get into only offered that option). Turned out she really liked it. It gave her experience so she felt more confident in the RN portion, plus she was able to work as an LPN while becoming an RN. I think the RN portion was only another year, but I think that included the summer.

    Good luck in whatever you decide!
  7. by   puresass
    maybe you could apply for both LVN & RN programs & see which you get into?
  8. by   jov
    Quote from chikichiki17
    I'm debating whether or not I should apply to 2 year RN programs or first doing an LPN program and then go to an RN program after graduating.
    I've heard a lot of people say the LPN programs end up being as long as the RN programs because of pre-reqs. Depending on the program you may also need statistics, organic chem and nutrition.

    Just get the bachelor's done and over with the first time since that is your ultimate goal anyway.
  9. by   TheCommuter
    The RN will enable you to have more opportunities.

    Since you already have a bachelor's degree, have you looked into the accelerated RN-BSN programs? These RN programs are specifically designed for students who already possess a baccalaureate degree in another field of study. After 18 to 24 fast-paced months of vigorous classes, you will graduate with a BSN and be able to sit for the RN boards.
  10. by   newbeginnings07
    I struggled for a long time with the same issue until recently.Around here there seem to be 4 options...go to a university and take a boat load of pre-reqs,community college and be on a clinicals waiting list for 3 years,a hospital based program which is like fighting a battle to get into or a pricey LPN program that ends up costing more than the ADN.My ultimate goal is to become an RN and earn my BSN and hopefully continue for my Masters but I came to the realization that it would take almost a decade to finish school, I'd be in (more)debt up to my eyeballs and without a doubt there would be some type of compromise.Then it was like the Heavens opened up and took away all the fretting about what to do when to new schools opened close to my home.They offer a 1+1 program with no pre-reqs,and no waiting lists in which you'll earn your LPN at the end of the first year and your RN(ADN) at the end of the second year all while earning credits towards a BSN.It is about the same cost as say a 4 year university but in my opinion it compensates for all the waiting and extra classes that you would have to take prior to entering the program .It took 4 years of badly wanting to go to nursing school before this opportunity came about so believe me something good will come about for you.Just keep your eye on the prize and NEVER give up hope!
  11. by   al7139
    Hi chikichiki17,
    I live in the Southside of VA in Norfolk. I am currently enrolled in the Nursing School at Tidewater Community College. In the Hampton Roads area there are numerous options available to people who want to get into the healthcare field. My criteria when I did my research was that the priority requirement was a school that offered an Associates Degree in registered nursing. This is because my school works closely with some of the more advanced schools in the area offering BSN and Masters programs. When I graduate from TCC, all my credits will be transferrable to another school such as Old Dominion University should I decide to pursue a BSN or Masters at some point in the future. We have some health care schools in the area that offer diploma programs, but often classes offered in these programs are non transferrable for more advanced degrees, which means you have to repeat classes you would have already taken. The other criteria was the statistics (which should be available from the school upon request) of their program completion percentages, and the NCLEX pass percentage rate. The research I did led me to enroll in this school, for all of these factors, and the graduation rate and NCLEX pass rate was higher than some of the universities in the area. If you considerd relocating to my area I would absolutelyrecommend TCC. Do the research, and go to the campuses to meet the current students, and the Staff who are in charge of the nursing schools you are interested in.. I chose to go with an RN degree due to these criteria. If you are interested in relocation, the website is TCC.edu, and search Nursing.
    Amy
  12. by   Mama2girls
    The LPN programs here are 18 months. Even still I vote LPN over RN. I also plan on being an RN someday, but IMO it's the same amout of time if not quicker to go the LPN route first then bridge to RN. Here's my take on it:

    Lpn = 18 months + 12 months Lpn-RN Bridge = only 30 months
    (in some states lpn is only 12 months so that would be only 24 months)

    Rn = about 12 months to finish up pre-req's + 2 years of actual nursing school IF you get accepted first = 36 months
  13. by   chikichiki17
    I just wanted to thank eveyone for taking the time to reply. I'm not feeling too bad about getting into a nursing program anymore... I'm planning on sending out applications to all of the Associate degree RN programs in my home state, Virginia. Hopefully someone will take me. If not my back up plan is to just study nursing here in Spain. The college entrance exam for international students is suprisingly easy and tuition is only about $1,000 per year (not semester!!) at the public universities. Staying here would acutally be my first choice if it wasn't for the fact A) I'm not an EU citizen so I can't legally get a job B) I've already been living here for about a year and a half and am really missing my family and friends
  14. by   CityKat
    It's better to wait and get into an RN BSN program and go for the RN. You will make a lot more money than an LPN and you're autonomous. More opportunities for growth and to advance. It seems like the long route to the RN doing the LPN first. A waste of time. Good luck

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