Is it easier to get your Rn by getting your LVN first.
- 0Feb 15, '09 by scootersuzI am a 46 yr old single mom of two year old twins and I am wondering if it is kinder and gentler to get your RN by first doing your LVN and then doing the RN bridge step up program. I am interested in doing this also because of the lengthy wait list for the RN programs. I could get into the LVN program next January but need to wait three years for the RN 2 yr program to start. Any precautions or recommendations about this would be greatly appreciated. I have found that just studying for my pre req classes has been challenging but then again the girls were very very young and it is now just starting to get a bit easier now that they are two.
- 3Feb 15, '09 by caliotter3The advantage that I see to getting the LVN license first then going to an LVN to RN bridge program is that of ease of entry to the RN education process. Many people choose this route to get around being rejected for nursing programs or being caught up in messy lottery systems or waiting lists that are years long. Otherwise the only other advantage is the ability to work in an LVN capacity to pay for RN school.
- 0Feb 24, '09 by djandkmommyThis is the route I am taking. Not exactly by choice though. I'm making a mid-life career change which was facilitating by getting laid off. Some things happen for a reason, as now I'm able to pursue the career I really wanted LOL!
Anyway, I was late in applying and was unable to get into an RN program. So I applied for the LPN program with the intention of bridging to RN. The only bummer is that where I am (not sure if this is case everywhere), you can not just move from LPN to RN. You have to have your LPN license before you can apply and that makes it about a 15 month wait for the next RN program (due to the application dates, etc.). So I will be working exclusively and trying to take any courses I can in that 15 months.
LPN's do not seem to have many options in MA (where I'm from) so I hope that I can find enough work to keep me going while I pursue the RN.
Good luck with you decision.
- 0Feb 24, '09 by jjjoyFrom what I've heard, the pace and degree of difficulty of an LPN program isn't necessarily easier than an RN program. Instead of cramming two tons of information into two years, you're cramming one ton of information into one year. Most programs will have a couple of days a week dedicated to clinical rotations in facilities in addition to lecture time, monstrous reading assignments, studying, class projects and writing care plans (a learning tool that can take a lot of time to put together depending on the instructor's requirements).
Since you are concerned about time for family, know that full-time nursing school with a full-load of courses demands a lot of you, regardless of whether it's an LPN or RN program. Some schools are set up that you can take any non-core nursing courses ahead of time, thus freeing up a bit of time during nursing school. A few schools do offer part-time programs that allow more flexibility. That's about as close you'll get to "kind and gentle" in nursing school since many nursing schools are somewhat akin to bootcamp.
In making your decision, it would probably be a good idea to find out more about the specific programs available to you. Talk to students and former students if possible. What's the schedule like? Is there a lot of work to do at home? Talk to any nurses you might know if they have any information about the different programs (local reputation, etc). If you don't know any nurses, ask friends and family if they know any nurses they could introduce you to.
If all else is equal, then, it might make sense to take the plunge right away and get started with the LPN program. Or maybe you decide to wait a few years for the RN program when your girls will be a bit older.
- 1Feb 24, '09 by Jules AQuote from djandkmommyOh this makes me nuts! The RN students don't have this requirement and at the point where I joined the RN program I had 1 1/2 more semesters of nursing school/clinicals than they did. Check around because in my area there was two that required you to work for 6 months as a LPN but the rest didn't and I got into a direct entry program. Good luck!The only bummer is that where I am (not sure if this is case everywhere), you can not just move from LPN to RN. You have to have your LPN license before you can apply and that makes it about a 15 month wait for the next RN program (due to the application dates, etc.). So I will be working exclusively and trying to take any courses I can in that 15 months.
- 1Feb 24, '09 by djandkmommyJules A - I know, it is frustrating! I am looking around my area (southeastern MA) but I have yet to find any that do not require the LPN license when you apply - which would at the beginning of my LPN schooling.
If I find anything, I will be sure to post it here!
- 0Feb 25, '09 by rhondap1I am 45 y/o and just finished the LPN program and waiting to take my boards. I got in the Fast Track program (only takes 12 months). We have a local university that offers a one year LPN-RN bridge program. I can start this August and finish August 2010 with my RN. I chose this route so that I can work while getting my RN, plus it will cut at least 18 months off of the regular RN program. If you can't start the LPN until next Jan, see about taking some of the pre-reqs you might need to get into the RN program. That way you will have them out of the way and can go right into the RN from the LPN. Good Luck!!
- 0Mar 3, '09 by TheCommuter, ASN, RN Senior ModeratorIt might not necessarily be easier to earn an RN license by becoming an LVN first. However, your LVN license will enable you to have good earning potential that will make living through RN school easier.
It is, in my opinion, better to work as an LVN while attending an RN program instead of flipping burgers at a fast food place or cashiering at a convenience store.