Thinking of starting nursing school at 47

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    I am thinking of going back to school for an Associates RN after being a medical transcriptionist for twenty five years. I am a little overwhelmed at all that might entail but nursing has been a lifelong dream. Anyone started nursing school in GA at my age? And if so, did you find it harder to get a job after graduation? I'm not the best at math (OK I stink) but other than that, my GPA was quite high during my last college semester. Unfortunatly my biology and micro are too old to count now so I have to retake them. As for the math, I'm worried that I might not be able to do all the dosage calculations but I did notice at the hospital here in Dalton that the nurses did not appear to be doing hand calcuations but more relying on the pumps and computers. Is that the case? Any other advice/info would be so appreciated. Wondering what the going rate is for a new grad RN around here?
  2. 23 Comments so far...

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    Quote from suzilks1
    I am thinking of going back to school for an Associates RN after being a medical transcriptionist for twenty five years. I am a little overwhelmed at all that might entail but nursing has been a lifelong dream. Anyone started nursing school in GA at my age? And if so, did you find it harder to get a job after graduation? I'm not the best at math (OK I stink) but other than that, my GPA was quite high during my last college semester. Unfortunatly my biology and micro are too old to count now so I have to retake them. As for the math, I'm worried that I might not be able to do all the dosage calculations but I did notice at the hospital here in Dalton that the nurses did not appear to be doing hand calcuations but more relying on the pumps and computers. Is that the case? Any other advice/info would be so appreciated. Wondering what the going rate is for a new grad RN around here?
    There were at least 10 students in my evening/weekend nursing class at my local CC in PA who were 40 and several over 50. All of us completed the program and passed the boards and most (but unfortunately not all) eventually found nursing jobs.

    As for math, my theory is that almost no one is born with an innate ability to do calculations. For years, I thought that I was poor at math but the truth was simply that I was too unmotivated to put the time in to get proficient. Once I got over that - and put the time in doing the practice problems - I got through 4 math courses, including 2 semesters of calculus, with no grade lower than B. You can do it! Most dosage calculations are actually pretty simple if you are even reasonably proficient in math and you don't have to rely on using those ridiculous formulas that most nursing programs try to make you memorize.

    The two pieces of advice I would give are to 1) make sure you actually want to be a nurse and 2) make sure that the job market in your area is hospitable to hiring new grads (or be willing to move if not).

    Good luck with your decision.
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    In LPN school 2 of my classmates were I know 60 plus, Now im in the LPN-RN bridge and majority of are 40-50 plus. GO FOR YOU DREAMs!
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    I turned 50 this year and am going to be starting my 2nd year of an ADN program in August. If you really, truly want to be a nurse and are willing to do what you need to do to succeed in nursing school, go for it. Look at it this way, you're going to get older no matter if you're in school or not so why not be doing what you want to do instead of sitting around just getting old?

    I went back to school when my youngest was starting kindergarten and started my pre-reqs for surgical tech school. I graduated and then started working on my pre-reqs for nursing school and was working full-time as a surgical tech. I am still working full-time and am in school and I won't lie, it hasn't been easy and it hasn't been that much fun, but it's doable. My grades are better than some of my classmates who are half my age and who don't have a job, don't have kids or any other responsibilities other than school. It's all about what you want to do and what you're willing to do to get what you want. Do I have a social life, no. Do I get as much sleep as I'd like, no. Is it hard, very hard but it's going to be so worth it next May when I graduate.

    If this is what you truly want to do, go for it!
    hopefaithlove26 likes this.
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    I will be 48 this year and will be starting my BSN program 6 days before my birthday. Go for it. I know a friend of mine started LPN school at the age of 63. I lie not, that's right 63 years young.
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    Go for it! I finished my ADN when I was 60 and just completed my BSN at 62. Now looking into Masters programs. If it's your dream don't let it go. As for the math, there's more calculations in school than you will use in your practice but you have to know how to do them. They really aren't that difficult. Best of luck to you.
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    Wow!!! This is SO encouraging to me....LinB you definitely inspire me!!! Just curious...do you work on the floor? Someone made the comment to me that 12 hour shifts are really tough the older you are. It did make me stop and think. My brain says I can pull a 12 hour shift but my body is questioning that? LOL
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    As for the math, I had to take the math portion of the compass and did just about like I expected. I have to take intro algebra, intermediate and then college algebra. I didn't let it discourage me. I want a strong math foundation before dosage calculations come into play. Waiting now on my acceptance letter so I can start pre reqs in the Fall. If all goes well I will be going into clinicals next Fall with my daughter!!
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    Has anyone faced this scenario? I got a 19 on the algebra portion of the compass...no surprise there. prealgebra was 46. Since math was my weakest subject in high school...and now thirty years later having had no math since then I'm more than rusty. In fact, I need to start from square one which is fine with me. The problem is my school is telling me my compass score is too low to be accepted?? That I need a higher compass score. Even though on my print out from the test it just said i needed to do intro, intermediate and then college algebra. I'm very discouraged. I need a teacher, not a book to get my math skills up to par. The part that really bothers me is that if I was an incoming high school student and had my scores, I would be admitted and given the remedial courses I need but since I am a non traditional transfer student with previous college (and a GPA of 3.4 overall and maintained a 4.0 my last three semesters including micro!) they are telling me the standards are higher for me. WHAT? Trying to get in touch with the dean of admissions and see what I can do but time is ticking and all the classes are filling up for Fall. Looks like my chances of getting into clinicals next Fall is dropping fast. In order to do that, I have to take three classes for fall, winter and summer. Has anyone else felt like it's harder to go back when you are older and are a nontraditional student??
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    I'm older and non-traditional, and I think I'm doing better in school now then I would have done if I'd gone right out of high school. The best advice I can give is for you to study the math and retake the COMPASS. Most schools will allow a retake, and if you study, you should be able to get that score up enough for acceptance.

    I hadn't touched algebra since high school, so I bought CliffsNotes Math Review for Standardized Tests. It was a great refresher for me, and it got me a high enough score on the COMPASS that I went straight into College Algebra and finished it with a high A.


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