Military Nursing Questions Answered - page 7

Hello. I have seen many questions posted about the recruiting, the military, and future military experiences, I wanted to start a Q & A forum where you can ask questions related to the military from... Read More

  1. by   jeckrn
    Quote from dj-usrn
    hi everyone..:spin:

    i would like to ask questions about joining the navy reserve.. i graduated 2008, in the philippines, took my nclex last year (august 2011) and a registered nurse. i'm having a hard time looking for a job, everybody's telling me to try navy. my questions are:

    - what are the requirements? am not yet a citizen but a green card holder. see lunah's answer
    - do they accept new rn's? i have no experience at all except being a student nurse most services require some sort of experience, varies by service and status (active or reserve)
    - how long will i serve? is it 3-5 years?all contracts are for 8 years, how you serve is based on the contract. if active duty will have to serve 3 years active then 5 years reserves either active reserves (1 weekend a month etc.) or inactive reserves (warm body who could get a call)
    - for reserve nurse, where do they deploy me?
    anywhere that they need you; from a base just down the road to any where in the world.
    i work one weekend a month and 2 weeks a year ? for the most part yes, but depending on the unit could be different
    - what are the benefits? depends what your status is, active or reserves.

    thank you in advance
  2. by   bmichellejoyner
    [font=times]this thread is amazing. thank you so much for all the info!
    i hold a bs in sociology and have been accepted into an accelerated bsn program, beginning in june of this year. it's a small private school, and i'm worried about how i'm going to cover the expense. i like the idea of taking care of those individuals who take care of us, so nursing in the military seems like it might be a great way to meet my financial needs while doing fulfilling work.

    does anyone know what sort of benefits i might be eligible to receive as a student? since i already hold a bs, would this change my application status at all and/or potential benefits? how long does the process typically take, from application to acceptance into the service and then disbursement of benefits? i'm open to the possibility of working in any branch.

    i'm 28 (i'll be 29 in july), and my program will end in august of 2013. thus, i'll be 30 when i could be commissioned. is this within the age limitations? also, my school is very small and does not have any rotc programs, though they do have a cooperative agreement with an afrotc program another school in portland.


  3. by   jeckrn
    Each service has its own benefits while in school. Once you graduate all the benefits are the same. The only difference would be a signing bonus which varies by service. What you need to do is contact a healthcare recruiter for each service and speak with them to see which one would be the best fit for you.
  4. by   navyman7
    BMICHELLE: i would get started on whatever application you decide on ASAP as that process can take a while (months). Regarding benefits, your benefits start day 1 of going Active Duty, so no health benefits while you're in school. Hope this helps.
  5. by   bmichellejoyner
    Thanks, navyman.

    For anyone else who is browsing this board for info, here's what I've found out from some very helpful AF and Army healthcare recruiters in the past couple of days:

    The Army and Navy both offer programs for students who are currently in the process of earning their BSNs. I can't speak to the specifics of the Navy program, but for the Army, there is a $5k bonus upon acceptance to the program, a $1k stipend each month the student is enrolled full time in his/her program, and another $5k bonus at graduation. (I believe that the Navy's program is similar, but don't quote me.) After passing boards, the student will head to BOLC and active duty.

    The AF, however, doesn't have a program of this sort. They do offer a scholarship for nursing students who are also in AFROTC; however, if you have a previous bachelors -- like me -- then you won't be eligible for AFROTC. Bummer.

    Thanks again to everyone on the thread for their helpful info so far!
  6. by   bmichellejoyner
    Oh! And I almost forgot: the boards are in October for the Army program, so I'll be starting my packet next month for submission this fall.
  7. by   willhigg6
    Quote from bmichellejoyner

    The Army and Navy both offer programs for students who are currently in the process of earning their BSNs. I can't speak to the specifics of the Navy program, but for the Army, there is a $5k bonus upon acceptance to the program, a $1k stipend each month the student is enrolled full time in his/her program, and another $5k bonus at graduation. (I believe that the Navy's program is similar, but don't quote me.) After passing boards, the student will head to BOLC and active duty.
    Navy NCP is $5k bonus upon acceptance to the program, $1k stipend each month the student is enrolled full time in his/her program, and another $5k bonus at the 6 month mark of being in the program. Same idea, but just different timing for the award of the second $5k.
  8. by   charliegboma
    navyman 7, thank you for the invaluable info you have provided thus far. I have a question for you Sir: thinking about joining the Navy when I graduate from nursing school and I am torn between psych and critical care. I would like to get my graduate degree before joining and I want to know what your thoughts are about waiting to get my MSN before joining and if there will be better opportunities in psych or anesthesia. Thank you.
  9. by   navyman7
    charliegboma: those 2 areas of nursing are light years apart. You need to decide for yourself what kind of nurse you want to be because you can't do both of those.
    As for coming into the Navy with your graduate degree, hard to say. I haven't seen anyone related to critical care nursing coming in with a graduate degree. Most join in order to have the Navy pay for their graduate degrees. It is definitely easier to get selected for masters in psych program than for anesthesia. The reason for that is there are many people in critical care who want to go on to CRNA school while I have only met 2-3 who have wanted to continue on with psych. They continually are asking those who work in psych if they want to apply for the graduate programs where in the ICU they don't ask people because there is always a surplus of people wanting to apply.
    If it were me I would really ask myself what it is I want more; to work for the Navy or to get my masters. For me my masters was more important and joining the Navy wasn't the best move for me. I wanted the freedom to choose what school I went to and when. The Navy has its own ideas about that. Think about this stuff and let me know if this helps. I would be glad to discuss this more if I didn't quite answer your questions. I hope this helps some and good luck.
  10. by   charliegboma
    Navyman7,thank you for your remarks. The reason I am considering doing a Masters degree before joining is that I plan to apply for the loan repayment plan and I read somewhere that nurses with graduate degrees typically come in at 0-2, whereas those with just BSN (regardless of years of experience) come in at 0-1. You are in a better position to tell me if this is factually correct.I read on the NavyMed website that the maximum yearly loan repayment was $45,000 (less 25% federal tax). If I join the Navy with my BSN, it is very unlikely that I will be able to go to grad school within the first 3 years. If I come in with a grad degree, then I can leave service after my initial contract is over if I decide to. These are some of the thoughts I have flying in my head. If you had to do it all over again,would you join the Navy?
  11. by   Amistad
    Hi there Navyman7! Next semester I will be entering my senior year of nursing school and will be graduating with a BSN and an EMT certification. I've been thinking about going into the armed forces to work eventually in critical care for the past six months. Your answers to the questions in this forum have been very helpful, so thank you!! I know most of these questions have been about logistics, but I'm still curious about the psychological and day-to-day components of being in the navy...

    What does your typical day look like? When you have free time (if you do have free time) what do you do on a naval base? Do you have opportunities to leave and go into the surrounding cities/towns? Do you have a roommate or live alone? Have you made lasting friendships? Are most people in the navy married? I am single and would like to marry eventually (although I'm in no hurry)... Is it difficult to date while in the navy?

    When you made the decision to join the navy, did you have friends or family who were against it? I would be the first person in my family to join the armed forces, and my parents are absolutely terrified of it. My mom thinks that being deployed would be a tragedy, while I would find it a blessing to have the opportunity to serve my country and the men and women who protect it. I know that I would not have the ability to choose where I live. Have you had to live someplace you did not want to be, and was it difficult to adjust to?

    Thanks again, and I look forward to hearing from you
  12. by   navyman7
    charliegboma: if you are wanting to start out at a higher rank then you need time as a nurse to quailfy. You don't necessarily need to get yout masters to come in as an O-2. Typically to come in as an O-2 you need around 4 years of nursing experience. If you have experience less than this then they will alter your date of rank so that when you come in as an O-1 you won't be in that rank for the whole 2 years, maybe 6 months or something like that.
    Regarding your loan repayment, I haven't met anyone who has joined the Navy who has gotten that. What I have seen is this, after you fulfill your initial obligation and prepare to sign a new contract people opt for the retention bonus which will pay there student loans off up to a certain amount (maybe it's 45k, not sure about this). However there are other kinds of retention bonus' available. One that i am most familiar with is the critical care retention bonus. That bonus is dependent on you having your CCRN. If you have this then you can committ to staying at the bedside for another 4 years for 80K.
    You are correct about having to wait to go to graduate school in the Navy. They won't let you go straight to school. Most have to wait at least 3 years before applying, but even that can vary. That's a much longer reply.
    As for doing it all over again, very hard to say. Not sure. I had a job when most were struggling to find one. I got some very excellent training. If all the circumstances were different at the time of my application maybe I would reconsider.
  13. by   navyman7
    Amistad, check your profile inbox.