anyone else changing careers to go into nursing? - page 3
Hi everyone! Is anyone else here totally changing careers to go to nursing school? I guess I'm looking for a little encouragement that it's OK for me to want to get out of the corporate/business... Read More
Feb 1, '03I have a BS in Business/Marketing and have been working in the business world for the last 10-12 years and am considering jumping ship for nursing. My mother is a retired RN and her advice was go for it, but don't work for the government sector!
I have a few science and math courses in my past, but know I need to take several before I enter a graduate nursing program.
My question is this..would it be better to start with a local community college, get an Associates and take the NCLEX-RN then go onto grad school or should I take my pre-req's asap and apply to a Masters Entry program?
I live in New England and am lucky enough to have a variety of programs to choose from.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated..
Feb 3, '03Sorry no advice - just a question. What is the NCLEX-RN? Some type of RN certification test? I am thinking of changing careers too and have very little experience in the area.
also, i am considering enrolling in an accelerated BSN program which will allow me to get my BSN in one year. Has anyone done this type of program? Are there any downsides? Do people feel they are missing out on things b/c of the accelerated pace?
Feb 3, '03When I decided to pursue nursing (sept '01), I thought I was the only person in the world changing careers. WOW! I was totally wrong. We are not alone. There are so many of us "oldtimers" out there. Nursing is something I've thought about for many years, and only now did it strike me to go for it. I'm waiting for my acceptance letter for the LPN program to start fall '03. I'm going that route because presently I'm unemployed and need to get out there in the job market by fall of 04, that's when my daughter starts college! From there, I will go on to BSN.
Good luck to you Amyrae!
Feb 3, '03Hello!
Even though you already have a bachelor's degree, when you go back to school for nursing you'll be getting another bachelor's degree, not a master's degree. Unless I'm misunderstanding your question, it seems like you may be a bit confused -- going to nursing school is not the same thing as going to graduate school. You can either get an Associate Degree and then take the licensure exam, or take a full BSN program at a 4-year college or university and then take the licensure exam. The difference will be whether you have just an AD or a BSN, but with each program, you're still an equally licensed RN. And from my research, people have told me there is no difference between AD RN's and BSN RN's -- pay is about the same, and you're licensed to do the same things. About the only difference is that if you ever want to be in nursing management, you'll need your BSN.
As for which program to go for -- if you already have a Bachelor's degree (like I do), I would go for an Associate's Degree as this is the quickest route to becoming an RN. A BSN program would incorporate all the pre-reqs that you already have from your other degree. For example, I'm starting an AD nursing program in the fall, but before that I have to take Chemistry and Anatomy & Physiology 1 and 2 because I didn't have those from my other degree. So I'd get those pre-reqs out of the way as soon as you can!
I hope I answered your question! I've been right in the middle of researching this same stuff for several months now!
Feb 3, '03To bodine:
The NCLEX is the licensure exam that you have to take once you graduate from a nursing program. This is how you become a licensed RN. Everyone has to take this exam once they finish nursing school.
I've also looked into those one-year accelerated that you asked about. What I've found out from talking to people is that you absolutely dedicate your LIFE to that school for the entire year. So basically, count on no time to yourself, and definitely no time to work -- it's a full-time program and then some. And I don't know what your previous bachelor's degree is in, but mine is in journalism so I don't have a strong science background, so I wanted a program with a little slower of a pace. I think a lot of the people who do those 1-year accelerated programs are people who already have some type of health background. Also, they're very expensive -- at one of the schools in my town that offers this program, the cost is $28,000 for one year. Ouch!
Hope this helps!
Feb 3, '03Amyrae -
Thanks for your response. i actually just sent you a private message which you can ignore. yes, my understanding too is that they require full dedication for an entire year and can be very intense. the two i am looing at are expensive (around 20K) but i have also heard that many employers will offer to pay back loans (almost in full) as employment incentives so I havent been to o worried about the money issue. i am attracted to it because it is so quick (once my prereqs) are done and i cant see working and going to school at night for several years. i think that would drain me even more than i already am at this point. thanks for your response.
Feb 3, '03To Amyrae76
Thanks for you post..you are a wealth of knowledge!! I have been doing a lot of research and there are a few programs that will allow folks with Bachelors degrees in fields other than nursing and who are not currently nurses to obtain a Masters in nursing. Boston College, Simmons College and Mass General Institute of Health Sciences all offer Masters of for the non-nurse. These are all three year full-time programs that require you to pass the NCLEX-RN upon completion of the first year of the program. You do have to complete several pre-requisites before entering, such as microbiology, anatomy and statistics before you officially begin, but all three of these schools offer summer sessions prior to beginning the program that offers all the pre-req's.
So, basically, my question is, does it make sense to enter one of these programs or to get and AD and sit for the RN exam right away then apply to grad school?
Feb 3, '03Metatronblue -
you might want to start a new post with your question. i think alot of people reading this thread are fairly new in the field or havent even begun. you would probably be able to get a much more experienced perspective if you posted as a new post to the whole board.
Feb 3, '03Hmm, that's interesting. I don't know if any schools in my area of the country offer a master's degree in nursing for a non-nurse -- I've never heard of that before.
I don't know if I'm a wealth of knowledge! I hope I'm giving you correct info. I've been researching this for months, trying to decide if it's what I want to do, so I can share with you the info that I've found out!
Well, it's hard to know which way to go in terms of school. If you go the AD route, it will probably take you 2 years (not including pre-reqs), and if you go the master's program, you'll be a licensed RN after the first year. I guess you should ask yourself this: what is your reason for wanting a master's degree in nursing, rather than just a regular BSN or AD? Master's level nursing allows you to teach and administrate, but is that what you want to do? I guess if your goals are more toward the teaching or business end rather than the hands-on end, the master's route would seem like the way to go. For me, a big reason I'm doing this is to get out of the "business" world and get into something hands-on, so I know I'm not going to want to teach or manage. So I'm going the AD route. If you get just a basic AD, you always have the option of going back for your BSN or eventually master's, if you decide you want to. There are lots of options available to us!
Feb 3, '03Thanks...all this dialogue is really great!
I eventually want to be a Nurse Practioner with a specialization, and that requires a Masters....and since I have been in the business/management world it would be nice to transfer some of what I have learned to the healthcare profession, but ultimately, patient care is the most important factor in my decision...
Feb 3, '03Someone had posed a similar question at a open house I attended for a BSN program and the moderator (who had twenty years exp.) suggested that the person get her BSN or associates and practice for a few years before getting her masters. The moderator noted that she entered nursing school intending to practice pediatrics and fell in love with oncology. Today, 20 years later, she still practices in that area. For the same reason, the BSN programs I have looked at do not allow you to elect your own clinicals because they want to ensure that you get exposed to all types of nursing.
Also, given the demand for nurses do you think you might be able to get your asociates, get a job and then get an employer to pay for you to get your masters? I have not looked into the availability of these types of options, but I have wondered what is out there in the way of tuition reimbursement for nursing continuing education.
Feb 3, '03I've asked around about the tuition reimbursement programs too, and they ARE out there, but it's not "free and clear" money. From what I hear, your employer will repay a percentage of your student loans (or they'll give you a big sign-on bonus) only if you sign a contract to work for them for a certain number of years. The downside of that is that you probably won't have much control over your schedule that way. If you start off working nights at a job and hate it, if you've signed a contract with them you've got to stay there. But it's still definitely worth checking into!
Feb 4, '03You're never too old to change careers! I'm 49 1/2 years old.
I was accepted to my 1st choice nursing school today! I am a legal investigator and plan to blend nursing with law=Legal Nurse Consultant. While waiting I have been following this thread. Your information and heartfelt encouragement has sustained me for the 4 month wait for acceptance. Thanks