Does it matter what school I get my BSN from?

  1. 0
    Hello everyone,

    I am currently a rising senior at Moravian College in Bethlehem, PA (dont know if you've heard of it lol). I pretty much went to a liberal arts school to figure out what I want to do in life and expose myself to a very broad curriculum. I will graduate with a B.A. in history in Fall 2010 (lost credits for transferring, should of graduated Spring '10). At this point in time I have finally figured out that I want to be in the medical field because I want to help take care of people who need help. An experience I had with my best friend who is a D1 tennis player at school who became injured with a meniscus tear and now has chronic knee problems really showed me what I want to do in life.

    I currently have a 3.85 gpa overall and close to a 4.0 in the history major and I was wondering if it matters what school I get my BSN from. Eventually I want to go into a specialized field of nursing such as nurse practioner or maybe CRNA. I do not know right now but nursing school and clinicals should provide some insight (I hope).

    The only science classes that I have taken in college were during freshmen year -- Principles of Biology I and II, and General Chemistry I & II. I scored a '5' on my AP Psychology test in high school so I have credit for Into. to Psych. I have done research and most accelerated BSN nursing programs require more prerequisites (Anatomy & Physiology I/II, micro-bio, nutrition, human growth & development, & statistics). I can take human growth and development and statistics next semester in my college and still graduate on time in Fall 2010. I won't be able to get ana/phys & micro-bio done in time.

    The only two nursing programs that I found (Us news & world report) that would let me enroll without taking all the prereq's are at NYU and UPenn. I can take all the pre-nursing classing at NYU and it would take 2 1/2 years to graduate (probably less if I do take human growth/development & stat at my school before graduating). For UPenn I can apply & gain admission but will have to take micro-bio before classes begin in Sept 2011 (can do that in a CC somewhere b4 classes begin)..What I liked about UPenn is that they have lots of scholarships and financial aid and a grant for students whose families are low income (works out well for me)..

    If I do NOT get into either NYU or UPenn then I have to take the rest of the pre-nursing classes in spring 2011/summer 2011 at community college or somewhere else...wherever it will be cheapest.

    However, there is one more option. My college offers a nursing program that's in partnership with St. Luke's Hospital (anyone heard of this program?). The program is accredited by the PA State Board of Nursing and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

    Does it matter if I go to UPenn/NYU or do all the pre-req nursing classes and apply to schools such as Johns Hopkins, Boston College, Georgetown, University of Rochester, Penn State, Northeastern, etc. I definitely plan to go on to a Master's program once I gain some experience working as a RN for a couple of years. Or should I just stay at Moravian College and enter their nursing program after I finish Anatomy/Phys and a couple of other classes at the school.

    The problem is that I transferred into this school and cannot get full merit-based aid even though I'm one of the top students here. Transfer students do not get merit based aid. I already owe $30k in loans because I have been going here for two years. Would I have better chances of getting something close to a full ride at other nursing schools if I complete the pre-nursing classes and apply as a 2nd degree student for accelerated BSN. Seems that UPenn students get over 30k and my family is very low income so I should be a shoe-in for that plus I do have good grades so I should be able to get some more merit based aid. However, who knows if I will get in or not, my science grades aren't that stellar since it was freshman year and I had to commute 1.5h to and from school every day and it was very stressful + 1st year of college. Principles of Bio: B and C+, General Chem C and A.

    Thanks for your time,
    Sean

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  2. 11 Comments...

  3. 0
    Any help please? Im struggling with this decision
  4. 0
    You don't need to go to a fancy, expensive school in nursing. As long as it is properly accredited, it should be OK -- and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education is the higher of the 2 organizations that accredit nursing schools (The National League for Nursing is the other organization).

    Be sure to identify all of your options, though. There are plenty. There are some schools that offer an entry level MSN for people in your situation ... and other schools that have accelerated BSN programs -- all tailored to meet the needs of people who have gotten degrees in other fields. So, a traditional 4-year BSN program is not the only option.

    Also, some people in your situation pick up an Associate Degree in Nursing, which would qualify you to take the RN licensing exam ... and then do a ADN-MSN bridge program later, skipping the BSN completely or incorporating it into their MSN program. The ADN is relatively inexpensive and then their employers pay for the more expensive RN-MSN program while they work part time (or full time) as a nurse.

    As I said, there are lots of options. It sounds to me as if you haven't fully explored all of them yet.
  5. 0
    llg, When I was referring to BSN programs, I meant the accelerated/2nd degree BSN programs..not starting a 4yr long undergrad degree for the second time. The accelerated programs will take me 2.5 years if I have none of the pre-nursing classes. However, I will have developmental psych, statistics, and *hopefully* microbio completed before I enter so it should take closer to 2 years.

    In response to your suggestion, I have looked at ADN-BSN and ADN-MSN programs but it seems just as time consuming as the BSN-MSN if not more. ADN programs that I have looked at are 4 semesters long but I may have a semester waived for taking some of those classes in college. However, some MSN program prefer students with BSN degrees. An example of this are the top ranked CRNA programs and some Nurse practioner programs. Some of these programs have you complete the BSN before progressing towards the MSN.

    My problem is that I can only apply to two schools so far that will let me do the pre-nursing classes there. Everything else I need to take two semesters off and finish the prerequisites.

    One of the things that sort of "draws" me to the prestigious colleges/universities that offer these programs is their endowments. They have a lot of money to give for students who qualify based on merit/financial need.

    The nursing program at my school has NCLEX-RN passage rates of 75, 77%, and 65% through 2005-2008 for first time takers.

    Also if I do not get into the 2 schools I talked about above, would it matter to colleges if I took my pre-nursing classes at a 4 year institution or at a community college?
  6. 0
    Quote from n1cktm
    [URL="http://allnurses.com/members/21520/"][I

    The nursing program at my school has NCLEX-RN passage rates of 75, 77%, and 65% through 2005-2008 for first time takers.

    Also if I do not get into the 2 schools I talked about above, would it matter to colleges if I took my pre-nursing classes at a 4 year institution or at a community college?
    I would avoid any school with an NCLEX pass rate less than 80% -- but that's just my opinion. The national average is somewhere around 84%.

    As for whether or not schools will care where you take your pre-req's ... that depends on the particular school and you will have to ask them. I sat on an admissions committee once for a school at which it did matter. People who did their pre-req's at 4-year institutions got an extra point in the scoring system. But I am sure that other schools do not care. So, you'll have to ask the particular schools in question about that.
  7. 0
    Are you sure you can get any aid at all for an ABSN (besides, perhaps, private scholarships?) Many, many colleges will NOT provide any financial aid, or extremely reduced financial aid, for a second Bachelor's, regardless of what it is in. You may do better to apply to a direct entry Master's program if you know you want to get an MSN anyway.

    I have a coworker that went through an ABSN program and was very fortunate to have her parents pay for her 4-year degree, but they wouldn't bite on the second degree. She got NO financial aid (went to school in Illinois) because she was a second-degree Bachelor's student. She is 60K in debt from her nursing program. Just something to think about.
  8. 0
    Economically an ADN seems to be the best option since I can be done in 1.5-2years and can begin working and making money and gaining the necessary experience to apply for a MSN. I have a family friend who is a CRNA and from what I know about it, its the kind of environment that suits me. If this is the degree that I eventually want to pursue wont having the ADN be a problem since schools want a BSN as a prerequisite? Doing a ADN --> BSN --> MSN might take a lot more time thus costing more money in the long run? Any thoughts?
  9. 1
    Quote from n1cktm
    Economically an ADN seems to be the best option since I can be done in 1.5-2years and can begin working and making money and gaining the necessary experience to apply for a MSN. I have a family friend who is a CRNA and from what I know about it, its the kind of environment that suits me. If this is the degree that I eventually want to pursue wont having the ADN be a problem since schools want a BSN as a prerequisite? Doing a ADN --> BSN --> MSN might take a lot more time thus costing more money in the long run? Any thoughts?

    Having a ADN will not be an issue in some schools i understand if you have a bachelors in another area. there are bridge programs that will require additional classes to fill the void. I know a person that went this route....Bachelors in Biz, ADN in Nursing and then bridge program into a CRNA program. but i don't know of anyone that has gone from ADN straight into a CRNA program. Not saying it is not possible, just didn't hear of this ...Moreover, you need a min of 1yr ICU experience to apply to most if not all CRNA programs.

    i do know one person that has his ADN....doing his RN to BSN online (the Hosp pays) with the hopes of applying to a CRNA program when completed.

    CRNA programs are 2yrs. You need 1yr of ICU experience. ADN is 2yrs,....so this is a 5yr plan anyway.
    n1cktm likes this.
  10. 0
    I thought I would be able to get the ADN done in 1.5 since they want you to take English classes and certain elective, I thought those classes would get transferred from my history B.A. I heard many hospitals prefer new grads with BSN rather than ADN. Would earning an ADN and then doing the bridge immediately after and going full-time status rather than finding work be essentially the same as having a BSN in terms of employment. ADN-->BSN would no doubt be cheaper as community college costs almost nothing in comparison to private and even state schools.
  11. 0
    double post


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