As you already know there are several ways to your goal as a RN. It's really how you decide your route and what best suits your life currently. I understand community college is difficult and may seem daunting, but if you have the time right now and working part-time to get by, id suggest taking the community college route and start on pre-req classes for transfer to nursing program. I can see that you are interested in CNA, LVN (LPN) work, and that's great! however if you wish to start a career (soon) as a nurse, your best bet is to sacrifice a couple years in finishing anatomy, physiology, microbiology, chemistry, statistics, psych, nutrition, and general education and whatever else your choice of college may need that will allow you to transfer to a four-year university. It won't be easy, and as you already stated, it's competitive. Work your butt off, study extra hard and the dividends will pay off. While I was still in pre-nursing, I pretty much lived on campus. I was there from 7:30am till closing (10pm). I studied, and tutored others on the campus Learning Center. I got really good at my studies, and began tutoring others - which became instrumental to my learning. I packed my own lunch and dinner to save money and exercised on the campus track. I made good with all my professors. They all offered me letters of recommendation for my commitment and helping others students while being a good role-model. It will take dedication, and focus. As I mentioned in another thread, if you really are passionate about your goal, then you will do what it takes to attain it. Prior to college I worked as a CNA. I went through three months of rotations in a rehabilitation center, which then followed after with board examinations. I worked for three years and tried to promote to RN. I found out soon that it didnt work out that way. It required a certain amount of years working with a hospital and challenging the board. Community College only requires you to finish general education and pre-req courses for the program, which can be done in two and a half years, depending on placement test. Another incentive is that you can grab your Associate's Degree in some kind of Allied Health or Natural Science. I was able to get two with all the courses I've taken. Anyways, my point is there are lots of routes. The fastest (but most rigorous) route would most likely be CC route. Hope this helped a little. Good luck with choosing!