Wondering teenager

  1. 0
    I am 17 years old and will be 18 in March. My cousins were born premature and without the help of Neonatologist and neonatal nurses they may not be here today. I've always wanted to do something in the medical field that involves children. This inspired me to become a Neonatologist. I know you are suppose to major in a science such as biology or chemistry. I was wondering if I could go the nursing route and go to med school with a Bachelors of Science in Nursing rather than a biology major?
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  5. 0
    Welcome to allnurses.com

    The question you need to be asking yourself is: Do I want to be a doctor or do I want to be a nurse? Either is fine, but you should try to figure that out.

    It doesn't make sense to get a degree in nursing if you know you want to be a doctor, as you would be taking that spot away from another qualified applicant that really wants to be a nurse (there are more qualified applicants than nursing spots available in the US)

    Are there some nurses that become doctors? Absolutely (though the large majority of them have a few years of experience working as a nurse). Can you take all the pre-med requirements while obtaining a nursing degree? Yes, but you'll likely have to take a 5th year of college (where there is little funding from federal grants/loans). Moreover, if you immediately go from a nursing degree to medical school, many medical schools will ask why you chose to get a nursing degree if you don't intend to do it which is a tough question to answer and justify since there are only a limited number of nursing spots available.

    An alternative might be to become a Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, which is classified as a midlevel provider. NNPs will round with a neonatologist (or not, depending on the facility) and perform invasive procedures like a neo, attend high-risk deliveries, etc etc. A NNP requires 4 years of nursing school, 2 years a NICU nurse, and then 1-2 years of school for NNP. Medical school requires 4 years of a bachelor's degree, 4 years of medical school, 3 years of a pediatric residency, and 3 years as a neonatal fellowship.

    In some units, NNPs pretty much run the show and the neos are there for back-up. In other large academic centers (like children's hospitals), the NNP presents cases to the neo and follows recommendation, although the NNP adds their own input just like anywhere else.

    My suggestion is to shadow in a NICU and figure out what you might like to do. You're young, you have plenty of time to make a decision. Good luck!

    edit: as an aside, the "sister" site to allnurses.com (although considerably less tactful ) is forums.studentdoctor.net there is a forum there specifically for high school students that you can check out. They may talk to you about being a Physician Assistant as another midlevel provider choice, but I would not recommend that for NICU as PA's have little knowledge when coming into a NICU and are rarely hired except in large academic centers.
  6. 1
    One must follow a premedical course of study as an undergrad before applying to medical school but can major in any subject that one desires. You could major in nursing as long as you completed the required courses in the pre med program. Although nursing requires a fair amount of science classes, premedical students take more science classes that are generally more rigorous than what nursing students take.

    This is exactly the same thing that my daughter did. She got her BSN and had to take the higher level science and math courses required by the pre med course of study. At the end of her senior year of college, she decided not to take the MCAT or apply to med school and instead took the NCLEX and worked as an RN, eventually obtaining her MSN some years later. She now works as a nurse practioner and makes very good money without all of the debt she would have had to go into had she gone to medical school.

    Best wishes to you in your career in the medical field,
    Mrs H.
    joyfuljoanna likes this.
  7. 0
    Well one reason why I wanted to become a RN is when I finish undergrad school I can work a few years to save money up for med school. Also I do not want to major in biology or chemistry and end up with a job as a teacher, if I do not get accepted into med school. Yes I may be taking up a spot another student could have who has a dream of becoming a nurse but I also have reasons as to why I am thinking of doing this.
    I have always wanted to do something that has involved children. I would love to be able to do something that could impact so many peoples lives'. My dream is being able to see something so fragile become so healthy and strong and the fact that I could take part in something that may cause this change.
    After January of 2012 I will also have my CNA by taking a class at my high school. So that is one thing I have under my belt. Nobody in my family has gone to college. If I could be the first to go and finish and do better for myself that would make my family and I very proud.
    Any tips are helpful.
    Thank you[:
  8. 0
    *My dream is being able to see something so fragile become so healthy and strong and the fact that I could take part in something that may cause this change is amazing.
  9. 0
    Quote from joyfuljoanna
    Well one reason why I wanted to become a RN is when I finish undergrad school I can work a few years to save money up for med school. Also I do not want to major in biology or chemistry and end up with a job as a teacher, if I do not get accepted into med school. Yes I may be taking up a spot another student could have who has a dream of becoming a nurse but I also have reasons as to why I am thinking of doing this.
    I have always wanted to do something that has involved children. I would love to be able to do something that could impact so many peoples lives'. My dream is being able to see something so fragile become so healthy and strong and the fact that I could take part in something that may cause this change.
    After January of 2012 I will also have my CNA by taking a class at my high school. So that is one thing I have under my belt. Nobody in my family has gone to college. If I could be the first to go and finish and do better for myself that would make my family and I very proud.
    Any tips are helpful.
    Thank you[:
    babyRN had great advice. You should look into becoming a neonatal nurse practitioner. Medical school is a long, hard, road, but if that's what you want you should go for it. However, if you are going to medical school you should not major in nursing. An RN major won't make you a competitive applicant, and you will be asked why you have a nursing degree and aren't working as a nurse. If you want to go to medical school, do pre-med, chemistry, biology, psychology (with a strong background in science), physics, etc. If you want to be a nurse practitioner, do as babyRN said and go to nursing school, work as an RN for 1-2 years in NICU, and then go back for the required 2-3 years to get your NP. Either way, I wish you good luck!
  10. 0
    I would have to agree with babyRN. There are plenty of capable applicants that are trying to get into the nursing field, so I would suggest not taking one of those precious spots, especially if you are dead-set in being a doctor.
  11. 1
    Quote from joyfuljoanna
    Well one reason why I wanted to become a RN is when I finish undergrad school I can work a few years to save money up for med school. Also I do not want to major in biology or chemistry and end up with a job as a teacher, if I do not get accepted into med school. Yes I may be taking up a spot another student could have who has a dream of becoming a nurse but I also have reasons as to why I am thinking of doing this.
    I have always wanted to do something that has involved children. I would love to be able to do something that could impact so many peoples lives'. My dream is being able to see something so fragile become so healthy and strong and the fact that I could take part in something that may cause this change.
    After January of 2012 I will also have my CNA by taking a class at my high school. So that is one thing I have under my belt. Nobody in my family has gone to college. If I could be the first to go and finish and do better for myself that would make my family and I very proud.
    Any tips are helpful.
    Thank you[:
    [I][/I

    You would not end up with a job as a teacher if you didn't get into medical school. You would have to go through more training (probably another two years) and pass the state licensure exam in your area and in education while spending a full quarter student teaching. You would probably be looking at a job in a laboratory if you did not wish to complete the training required or were not competative for admission into the secondary education program.

    If you wish to take the med school route, you had better be a very good student and very good at science and math and majoring in chemistry shouldn't scare you. Pre med nursing can happen, but you will have to take very rigorous science and math classes and get As in them if you wish to get accepted to medical school. Are you a straight A student or close to it in high school? Did you get a high score on the ACT/SAT? Are you enrolled in Advanced Placement science and math courses?
    These are good indicators if one is going to be successful following a pre medical course of study.

    Nursing is no walk in the part either, but not nearly competative as getting into med school. You should still be a strong math and science student, but Bs are okay for nursing vs med school where As are expected.

    You are still young and have plenty of time. You will find that the journey is often better than arriving at your destination.

    Best to you,
    Mrs H.
    Coffee Nurse likes this.
  12. 1
    Quote from joyfuljoanna
    Well one reason why I wanted to become a RN is when I finish undergrad school I can work a few years to save money up for med school. Also I do not want to major in biology or chemistry and end up with a job as a teacher, if I do not get accepted into med school. Yes I may be taking up a spot another student could have who has a dream of becoming a nurse but I also have reasons as to why I am thinking of doing this.
    I have always wanted to do something that has involved children. I would love to be able to do something that could impact so many peoples lives'. My dream is being able to see something so fragile become so healthy and strong and the fact that I could take part in something that may cause this change.
    After January of 2012 I will also have my CNA by taking a class at my high school. So that is one thing I have under my belt. Nobody in my family has gone to college. If I could be the first to go and finish and do better for myself that would make my family and I very proud.
    Any tips are helpful.
    Thank you[:
    Have you ever observed a day in the life of a NICU? I don't know where your interests lie, but if you want to be the one who's at the bedside providing direct care for babies, being a neonatologist (or even an NNP) isn't what you're looking for. That's the job of the nurses.
    HazelLPN likes this.


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