LPN or RN?

  1. Hello Again!

    I posted a thread before regarding if I should go to school to be a medical assistant before I went to RN school and decided that becoming an LPN would be a better option for me. I have several schools available to me in the area that I can complete in one year and they are thousands of dollars cheaper than RN school. I think this would be beneficial to me because it would put me in a nurse like environment and the bigger thing is if I don't like it I didn't just waste 2 years of hell and am 20 grand in debt. So here are several questions for you guys.

    1. The main one being what should I look for in a school? I have a lot of LPN programs available to me, but some of them ask that you take pointless classes like anthropology and history. Should I look for school focused more on academics or clinical?

    2. My friend said that if I'm going to be an LPN I should just be an RN because there's not that much difference and you get paid a lot more. Is this true? What is the average salary an LPN makes? I have read on Google it's anywhere from $14 - $29 per hour!

    3. FINALLY are the schedules as crazy as an RN's? Are you guys working 16 hour shifts on no sleep and running on empty. I heard both yes and no.

    Thanks for all your help and career advice. I'm going on my 2nd one so I have to make sure it's done right!
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  2. 14 Comments

  3. by   MAmom81
    Quote from Gothique
    Hello Again!

    I posted a thread before regarding if I should go to school to be a medical assistant before I went to RN school and decided that becoming an LPN would be a better option for me. I have several schools available to me in the area that I can complete in one year and they are thousands of dollars cheaper than RN school. I think this would be beneficial to me because it would put me in a nurse like environment and the bigger thing is if I don't like it I didn't just waste 2 years of hell and am 20 grand in debt. So here are several questions for you guys.

    1. The main one being what should I look for in a school? I have a lot of LPN programs available to me, but some of them ask that you take pointless classes like anthropology and history. Should I look for school focused more on academics or clinical?

    2. My friend said that if I'm going to be an LPN I should just be an RN because there's not that much difference and you get paid a lot more. Is this true? What is the average salary an LPN makes? I have read on Google it's anywhere from $14 - $29 per hour!

    3. FINALLY are the schedules as crazy as an RN's? Are you guys working 16 hour shifts on no sleep and running on empty. I heard both yes and no.

    Thanks for all your help and career advice. I'm going on my 2nd one so I have to make sure it's done right!
    I will be attending my local CC for their LVN program and they focus on both academics and clinical. I have not gone to Nursing School yet but I would want my school to focus on both because you want the hands on experience as well as the academic experience too.
    As for pay I have been told between $17 to 25 an hour depending on where you work, for instance I have been told that you get paid more an hour about $22-25 for Long-term care facilities and about $17 to 20 man hour for a doctor's office. And yes you get paid more an hour for being and RN pus they have more options for where they want to work because LVNs are limited to wher they an work.
    I have heard the same thing anywhere from 12 hour shifts to 16 hour shifts, it just depends on the facility.
    I hope that this helps and I am also on my 2nd career and my second chance with going to college so I really need to be successful in school because me and my husband want to buy a house. I was going to go straight to RN but that means that I would have to complete 7 to 8 pre-reques before I could even but my name on the RN wait list and that wait list is at least 1 to2 years, it would take me 3 to 4 years to complete my pre-reques and have to wait 1 to 2 years I would be 37 by the time I would start the RN pogram. With the LVN program I have already put my name on the wait list, no pre-reques and I will start in Fall 2008 or Fall 2009 and I would be a Nurse a lot sooner plus my CC said that after I graduate and ass my boards they will credit me 2 semesters of the RN program and all I have to do is take and pass the third semester of the RN program and I can take my boards tobe an RN and pass that and I am an RN, which means I can become an RN faster!!!I wish you luck and I hope everything works out for you!!!
  4. by   MAmom81
    sorry about that bad word I ment to put pass not ass i am so embrassed:uhoh21::uhoh21::uhoh21:!!! I hope that I did not offend you- I need to make sure to go over what i have written more carefully!!!
  5. by   agldragonRN
    Quote from gothique
    hello again!

    i posted a thread before regarding if i should go to school to be a medical assistant before i went to rn school and decided that becoming an lpn would be a better option for me. i have several schools available to me in the area that i can complete in one year and they are thousands of dollars cheaper than rn school. i think this would be beneficial to me because it would put me in a nurse like environment and the bigger thing is if i don't like it i didn't just waste 2 years of hell and am 20 grand in debt. so here are several questions for you guys.

    1. the main one being what should i look for in a school? i have a lot of lpn programs available to me, but some of them ask that you take pointless classes like anthropology and history. should i look for school focused more on academics or clinical?

    2. my friend said that if i'm going to be an lpn i should just be an rn because there's not that much difference and you get paid a lot more. is this true? what is the average salary an lpn makes? i have read on google it's anywhere from $14 - $29 per hour!

    3. finally are the schedules as crazy as an rn's? are you guys working 16 hour shifts on no sleep and running on empty. i heard both yes and no.

    thanks for all your help and career advice. i'm going on my 2nd one so i have to make sure it's done right!
    do your rn if you get in, so you can skip the lpn-rn, it is less time. but if becoming lpn is what will work for you at the moment, then go ahead do the lpn program first. regarding which school is better, check your state board of nursing and look for the passing nclex rate of that particular school. you will want to go to a school with high passing rate for the nclex. above 95% is good. my school has 100% passing rate.

    angel
  6. by   TheCommuter
    I am an LVN at a skilled nursing facility in Texas. I earn $19 hourly, and the RNs who work alongside me earn $23 hourly. At my workplace, there's no huge pay difference between LVNs and RNs.

    I have Monday through Friday off, then I work two 16-hour double shifts on Saturday and Sunday. Under the Baylor plan, my place of employment pays me for a 40 hour work week, so this is not too bad of a deal for me.

    However, I would advise you to eventually pursue your RN licensure, because RNs tend to have more career mobility than LVNs/LPNs as a rule of thumb. While many LPNs have had a variety of experiences in different specialties, RNs generally have the pick of the crop.
  7. by   Tweety
    Quote from missy120808
    sorry about that bad word I ment to put pass not ass i am so embrassed:uhoh21::uhoh21::uhoh21:!!! I hope that I did not offend you- I need to make sure to go over what i have written more carefully!!!
    Stuff happens. Do you know about the "edit" function. I use it often.
  8. by   MAmom81
    Quote from Tweety
    Stuff happens. Do you know about the "edit" function. I use it often.
    Thanks for that, I forgot about that I will make sure to use the "edit" function next time.
  9. by   MAmom81
    Quote from TheCommuter
    I am an LVN at a skilled nursing facility in Texas. I earn $19 hourly, and the RNs who work alongside me earn $23 hourly. At my workplace, there's no huge pay difference between LVNs and RNs.

    I have Monday through Friday off, then I work two 16-hour double shifts on Saturday and Sunday. Under the Baylor plan, my place of employment pays me for a 40 hour work week, so this is not too bad of a deal for me.

    However, I would advise you to eventually pursue your RN licensure, because RNs tend to have more career mobility than LVNs/LPNs as a rule of thumb. While many LPNs have had a variety of experiences in different specialties, RNs generally have the pick of the crop.
    I have a some questions, first how do get shifts like that, does it depend on where you work? Can you ask for shifts like that? I know that I have awhile before I even start Nursing school every but i was just wondering about that. I have two boys 5 and 3 yrs. old and the shifts that you have would be perfect once i graduate and pass my boards, I would be able to take them both two and from school and only need a babysitter on saturday's because my husband has every sunday off. Sorry about my rambling, the shift you work sounds like a perfect shift if I can get once I become an LVN.
  10. by   RFederer
    Quote from missy120808
    I have a some questions, first how do get shifts like that, does it depend on where you work? Can you ask for shifts like that? I know that I have awhile before I even start Nursing school every but i was just wondering about that. I have two boys 5 and 3 yrs. old and the shifts that you have would be perfect once i graduate and pass my boards, I would be able to take them both two and from school and only need a babysitter on saturday's because my husband has every sunday off. Sorry about my rambling, the shift you work sounds like a perfect shift if I can get once I become an LVN.
    Really!! Sign me up for that shift!!! Where is the most likely place of employment to find that!!!!
  11. by   Gothique
    Well I called around to some schools and they are sending me information on both their LPN and RN programs. The one at my local community college is the cheapest so far with it just being $4,300 for an LPN and $7,000 for an RN. Plus they offer evening and weekend courses for people who work as well.

    I also figure that I'm 26 years old. If I love being an LPN I can easily go and get my RN degree and move on from there. I also looked at a lot of LPN jobs in my area and they pay really good with the average starting at $22/hr and that's a fine salary for me considering I'm only making $12 bucks an hour now.
  12. by   Conqueror+
    Gothique if you dont mind my asking what state are you in ? The flexibility and cost of your nursing programs seem awesome !!
  13. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from missy120808
    I have a some questions, first how do get shifts like that, does it depend on where you work? Can you ask for shifts like that? I know that I have awhile before I even start Nursing school every but i was just wondering about that. I have two boys 5 and 3 yrs. old and the shifts that you have would be perfect once i graduate and pass my boards, I would be able to take them both two and from school and only need a babysitter on saturday's because my husband has every sunday off. Sorry about my rambling, the shift you work sounds like a perfect shift if I can get once I become an LVN.
    Not all facilities offer the two-day weekend plan. The facility has to offer it before it can become available to you. In my area, the major hospitals tend to schedule nurses on 12 hour shifts, three days per week. On the other hand, virtually all of the nursing homes schedule 8 hour shifts, 5 days per week.

    To cover the weekend shifts, my workplace has the "Baylor Plan." There are about 9 nurses at my facility that are permanently scheduled for weekends, so that the weekday nurses can have their Saturdays and Sundays off all the time. In my area, nursing homes are far more likely to offer this weekend plan.
  14. by   Hospice Nurse LPN
    Originally Posted by Gothique


    I have a lot of LPN programs available to me, but some of them ask that you take pointless classes like anthropology and history.

    My LPN program required an Assoiciate Degree in Science to graduate. Some of the classes may seem pointless now, but you'll be ahead if you decide to pursue you BSN. Good luck to you!

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