Where do I start??

  1. I have been wanting to go to school to become an RN for awhile now. I am finally at the point where I can do it, mainly Labor and Delivery is what I really want to do! All of the different degrees and all the different ways about getting started are confusing. I have a very good paying job but what I really want now is a rewarding career.
    Can you all please tell me where the best place to start is? Should I get a CNA first? does this help while waiting for school? As far as school can you jump in and start for a bachelors degree or do you have to start with only an associate degree? I have talked to Barnes Jewish but she seemed kind of clueless how to help me get started. Do you have to have all the pre-requists or can you take them at their college? And how about night class, do they offer full time nights? What are some good school that you can get in fairly quicky (before my husband changes his mind..haha)
    sorry for all the questions............but I need help!!!
    Thanks again in advance, i really do appreciate it.
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  2. 12 Comments

  3. by   SWRN84
    I think it all depends on what path you want to choose to start yourself in nursing. You can either choose to do an associate degree program, a bachelor's program, or a diploma program. I think there may be at least one diploma program left in the St. Louis area. A lot of it also depends on if you have to work financially while you go to school, or if you can go ahead full steam with school. Do you want to start work as a nurse right away...as in a 2 year associate program, or can you go for a longer amount of time for the BSN? I graduated in 1984 from a hospital based diploma program. It was great as a start, but if I had to do it all over again, I would have gone ahead and obtained my BSN. It's so hard to go back to school when you finally get out and start working. I think your best bet would be to decide financially how you will do with working vs. school, what you want out of nursing....do you want to advance in your career.......and just start looking into different classes. Pre-requisites can be done anywhere as long as it's an accredited college....you could continue working in your present job and do prerequisites through a community college. I did everything all at once....all the prerequisites and nursing at the same time. It was pretty tough. I think it just depends on what you want to do and where you are located. I know you can also do prerequisite courses online, too, which could be an option. You have a lot of choices in how you obtain your schooling. Do you know any nurses personally, to get their opinion on what worked for them?
  4. by   ddierker
    Thanks for the speedy response. No, I don't know any nurses. My mother in law but she is long time retired. I do need to continue to work. Do you think there is an opportunity in L & D with just an associates? How about finishing your bachelors on line?
    Again, thanks a bunch!
    I keep looking at St. Johns Meryc's website and can't believe there are no listings for labor and delivery since they say they handle 8000 births a year.
  5. by   nursemelani
    Oh definately you could get a job in L&D with an associate degree RN. I think being a CNA first is a good idea, just so you're comfortable touching patients, seeing them naked, etc., before your first day of clinicals.
    Once you are an RN,you may have to take a job in med/surg, or wherever there is an opening, and then you will have priority when a job opens up in L&D. Hospitals hire from within before running a classified ad.
  6. by   mom2michael
    Here is a web site - contact them and they can help you get started.

    http://www.mahec.org/

    They have an awesome job shadowing program as well as several other programs that will help you get started in nursing. Look under "Regional Centers" to find the contact person for your area.

    I do job shadowing in addition to my clinicals and it's great. It's really given me an idea of where I want to go when I graduate.

    Good luck!!!!!
  7. by   SWRN84
    If you are interested in working L&D at St. John's, they do have fellowships in perinatal nursing. They offer classroom and clinical training for RN's in areas like OR, critical care, and perinatal. Not sure how often they run them, but it wouldn't hurt to call and speak with someone in the nursing office, or human resources to find out.
  8. by   wincha
    i would look at meremac community college (there is a waiting list)for your adn however you can also go to umsl and get your bsn and that will be with barnes. i graduated after college. i already had my basics out of the way but needed A& P 1 and 2, chemistry and microbiology. i would go to UMSL and sit down in their offices and see what you need. do you have any college? you say you have a good paying job do you want to go part time? do you want to go full time? what do you presently do?

    Quote from ddierker
    I have been wanting to go to school to become an RN for awhile now. I am finally at the point where I can do it, mainly Labor and Delivery is what I really want to do! All of the different degrees and all the different ways about getting started are confusing. I have a very good paying job but what I really want now is a rewarding career.
    Can you all please tell me where the best place to start is? Should I get a CNA first? does this help while waiting for school? As far as school can you jump in and start for a bachelors degree or do you have to start with only an associate degree? I have talked to Barnes Jewish but she seemed kind of clueless how to help me get started. Do you have to have all the pre-requists or can you take them at their college? And how about night class, do they offer full time nights? What are some good school that you can get in fairly quicky (before my husband changes his mind..haha)
    sorry for all the questions............but I need help!!!
    Thanks again in advance, i really do appreciate it.
  9. by   ddierker
    i have some college, i am finishing the pre-requisits at meramec this spring. Biology, english comp1,sociology, and already have some other all my computer classes, psychology,history etc.
    I will have to go part time because i can't afford to quit. I am a traffic coordinator, i make in the 40s and have good insurance. But i am capped out and nowhere to grow. Tired of working in an offcie and in trucking. I have always wanted to get into nursing or police work (my husband said no way on that one..ahha) and i am at the age where I can do it now.
    Does UMSL do part time and is there a waiting list there? Do you need pre requisits for that or will they let you take them threre?
    Thanks a bunch for you help.... right now i am thinking about Deaconess , but it is sooo costly!!!
  10. by   wincha
    you can check umsl but from what i understand from a friend of mine you cannot go part time there. have you checked into meremacs program since you are a student there. they have a good reputation. i think they have a waiting list also. the cost might be better.
  11. by   piscesgirl
    I just signed up for the nursing program at meramec and the waiting list is 2 years. That's fine with me because I go part time and can have all my non core classes out of the way before in the waiting period so when I start the core classes I'll only have 2 per semester unlike the 6 they have in the curriculum. Atleast this way you can get to take A&P without having to worry about other classes. It'll better your chances of a better grade in those classes. :chuckle I 'm thinking of then going to UMSL for my BSN and then see where to go from there. Good luck
  12. by   WDWpixieRN
    The only part-time program I am aware of in the St. Louis area is through Barnes. All the other programs are full-time days.

    If someone is aware of another program that's part-time, I'd love to hear about it.

    All the community colleges are full-time. Forest Park used to advertise an evening program, but somewhere on their website it mentions being discontinued.

    I am lined up to start Meramec in the fall. I would love to do the accelerated BSN at UMSL or SLU, but the cost of the education is scaring me away in addition to the fact that I, also, will have to work at least part-time while I'm in school.

    Best wishes!
  13. by   nadja9
    DDierker -

    Maryville University has a parttime evening/weekend program, but it is fairly expensive. UMSL has quite the waiting list (2+ years), so I would look into some other programs as well.

    I agree the St. Louis Community College system has a good program (same at Forest Park, Meramac, and Flo Valley). It's good that you are working on your generals right now, I always advise students to do that while they are applying and waiting to get into a nursing program. If you want to do your RN through the STL CC system, be sure to take chemistry. You have to have chem before you get into the nursing program with them.

    Some other schools to check besides SLU, BJC, UMSL, STLCC, and Maryville are: St. Charles Community College, Jefferson College, and Lewis & Clark Community College in Godfrey, IL (about 30 minutes from STL).

    You will not get in anywhere for the fall, most likely. Nursing schools can only take so many students per start, and most are waitlisted. But I would advise taking what you can now (A&P, etc), and get busy applying.

    If you need info on any programs in the STL metro area, PM me, and I will get you the information.
  14. by   buddiage
    St. Charles is full for this year. They also have an LPN program, and a LPN-RN bridge program. I'd say get the LPN first if all other RN programs are full, and see what the competitive edge is, if there is any. I told my brother to get his prereqs for RN before he goes into LPN, that way, he won't have to look back and do any more "extra" classes... Also, I'd look at state pass rates for the nclex from each school. That's a good indicator. Apply everywhere!

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