Accepted. Your thoughts on my situation?

  1. 0
    I just received my acceptance letter to Drexel's FNP program. Great news. However I am a little conflicted if I want to pursue my MSN due to my unique circumstances. Let me explain in hopes of hearing your thoughts...

    I work full time as a paid firefighter. The second highest department in the state. We work 24/off/24/5 days off. A great schedule. I work 2 12's a week as a PRN staff RN in a an ED. PRN pay puts me >$35. Combined with the fire department I make in excess of $100k/year working literally 50% of the days in a year. Regardless of my choice about an MSN I will not leave the fire department as I can retire in 18 more years at 49 years old with a 70% pension. Plus it is a fun job I enjoy.

    The VA would pay 100% of an MSN. However as much as I would enjoy the work I am unsure if I want to commit 3 more years of school to make a negligible amount more money. Currently I am outside of Philadelphia but know I could make even more (50ish) if I went in the city. Plus, my wife begins grad school this summer.

    I know there are many reasons to continue your education with money being only one. However I know I am already in a very fortunate position financially and because I do not work full time as a staff RN I feel as though I do not burn out the way some bedside nurses do. I question whether the work and sacrifice would be worth it in the end. I have 45 days to decide and change my mind every other day.


    Get the hottest topics every week!

    Subscribe to our free Nursing Insights newsletter.

  2. 12 Comments...

  3. 1
    You speak a lot about money and convenient schedules here, but little about why you want to become a FNP.
    Emergent likes this.
  4. 2
    I posted my schedule because if I had told you I worked 72hrs a week you wouldn't have understood and thought I was insane. However I can assure you it is quite a fortunate situation. And I mentioned money because I feel it is a unique circumstance different from many fulltime staff nurses who pursue advanced practice.

    This site always seems to fault people for considering the monetary value of a higher education. I enjoy nursing but do not wish to volunteer. I want to maximize the value of my education regardless of what level that is.

    I am drawn to advanced practice because I enjoy theory, knowledge and not just the whats but the whys. I am comfortable making independant decisions and leading a team. Furthermore I question if when I am 50 if I will want to be hunched over beds boosting patients, fighting to restrain them and starting IV's.

    Like I said, I understand there are many benefits to higher education with financials only being one consideration. However I also understand I am in a very fortunate and unique situation and was curious what others thought.
  5. 2
    Would obtaining an MSN give you any advancement in the fire department? I think it may be worth pursuing from both a monetary and intellectual standpoint. You could certainly make more money PRN and you have the degree paid for. It sounds like its just a matter of if you want to invest the time and intellectual capital to proceed with obtaining the degree. The MSN would likely provide you with additional retirement security later in life. You are right in that you have a unique and quite fortunate situation.
    FutureNurseS.Brown and Avenger1 like this.
  6. 6
    Future NPs don't have to be mother Teresa. There is nothing wrong with choosing a career for money and schedule if that's your priority.
    ICUman, antares, Crux1024, and 3 others like this.
  7. 0
    I was in a similar situation to you before I started FNP school, making a good amount of money equal to want NP's in my area are doing, and wasn't really dissatisfied.

    Now that I'm about to graduate, I'm kicking myself for not going to school sooner. The job role of the NP is so much more enjoyable to me. I love being the provider and go to guy, and when I'm working my normal RN job, I find myself longing to be back in my preceptorship calling the shots. Don't get me wrong, I love my job in the CVICU as a charge nurse, but I find the role of the NP to be far more enjoyable and exciting, in addition to being much more respected.
  8. 0
    I don't think there is anything with changing careers for financial or lifestyle reasons, but in your case it doesn't sound like either of those is a motivator. I understand, they were not for me either. All you have to ask yourself then, is do you really want to be a Nurse Practitioner? If you do, then go. If not, don't.
  9. 0
    You're overpayed
  10. 2
    Quote from adamRn79
    You're overpayed
    Seriously you are telling a firefighter he is over paid ? He makes over 100K WITH the $$ from his RN job. Geez.

    My main reasons for NP school were: 1. Did not/could not want to continue working ER/CCU. Health reasons and I just hated the 12 hr shifts. I knew that easing into middle age would just not be a good thing with those shifts. 2. Working outside of those units I was bored and frustrated with not being able to prevent illness. 3. I wanted to make more $$ but work LESS.

    At the end of the day, to is about being home with my family and being able to have the income to pursue the stuff we like to do which is travel, etc. Being an NP allows me to do this without working weekends, holidays, etc. You have a good income already and a good schedule that allows you time off with your family PLUS you will have retirement benefits that just can't be beat. I'd stick with what you are doing and enjoy life!
    ICUman and futureeastcoastNP like this.
  11. 0
    I'm a volunteer fire fighter (15 yrs) so I get the adrenaline rush and I've worked in a level one trauma center for 10 yrs. I went back to school so that as I aged (something I'm doing despite not liking it lol) I would have options. What do you plan
    to do at 49? Completely retire? Go ER full time? Something else? For me, my education gives me the option to earn good money and work another 15 yrs or so, I'm in in mid 50's now.

Nursing Jobs in every specialty and state. Visit today and Create Job Alerts, Manage Your Resume, and Apply for Jobs.

A Big Thank You To Our Sponsors