Lawyer to Nurse - page 8

by layne228

I am considering a career change from law to nursing. I am a practicing attorney and am very unhappy in my current career. I am actually one of the lucky ones who did very well in law school and, as a result, have a very "good"... Read More


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    Quote from doeRAYmee
    That's great you followed your heart. I'm doing the opposite. I'm going to law school. I've always wanted to become one but went to nursing school instead.
    That's great! Like you said, follow your heart and you can't go wrong!
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    It is such an encouragement to see that I'm not the only lawyer planning on becoming a nurse! I graduated from a top law school & am at a big law firm. All my friends/family think I'm deranged to give it up and start from scratch when I've only been practicing for 6 months. Somehow 6 months is all I need to know that I can't do this for the rest of my life. I struggle to pull myself out of bed every morning and I've hated law from the second I set foot at law school, but I stuck with it cuz I didn't want to be a quitter and didn't know what else to do with my life. Halfway through law school I developed a keen interest in nursing. I can't explain it, it just feels like my calling. I just have a strange sixth sense that this is right for me. Sometimes you just get that gut feeling.

    My big concern is that I'm not sure how I'll cope with the science/math. Those aren't my strong suits, I've always been a humanities student. But if I did reasonably well at a top tier law school, I don't think I'd do too badly at nursing school, right? That's my big trepidation... giving up something I'm reasonably good at (and earn good money from) to do something I may well by bad at... sighsss decisions decisions.. I'm so scared that I won't be a capable nursing student. I haven't touched math/science since grade 10 :S
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    Oh and funnily enough, my firm deals mainly w personal injury/ medical negligence. It's the closest I can get to my interest in healthcare, but it's just not cutting the mustard in terms of job satisfaction. I wanna be the person healing/attending to the injured individual, not the one sitting in a negotiation room hammering out an out of court settlement re his injury! Basically I feel oppressed being a desk jockey (which is what solicitors are) and I hate the people-related side of law as well (all that confrontation makes me feel out of my element).
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    Did anyone have trouble getting a hospital volunteer job because of your JD? or did you even admit to having one? Because of the lawyer stigma, I don't know that I should advertise this fact.

    Voluntarily, I provided a 1-page "resume" listing "relevant" medical experience and education (science undergrad). At the second interview, I am now being asked for a resume (she probably didn't see or have my 1-page creation). I think they just want to go through the motions for HR

    Any suggestions?
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    When I applied to my hospital volunteer position before nursing school, I mentioned nothing about my law background, because of the same reasons you stated, SophieD. I wanted to volunteer based on my personal merits and not based on the preconceptions and perceptions out there. It was not a big deal. Of course, when I applied to nursing school, having a law degree was a plus. There are more lawyers-to-nurses career changers out there than you realize. At the school I attended there has been one lawyer in each class for a few years now, it's very interesting. Also (specific to missineichen), opposite of you -- I was always strong in the math and science arena and struggled with reading and humanities, so nursing school came more natural for me than law school. In the end, I graduated with honors from nursing school, whereas in law school I was just average. Today as an RN, I dont drag myself out of bed to go to work -- ever. I love my job and I love the change I made in my career. Law was sucking the life out of me and life had no meaning, and now it does. Nursing was definitely my calling, hopefully it is yours too!
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    I am very glad to know that there are others who have gone before me. I am a lawyer. I am finally taking the action I have considered for several years and getting out before all the life force is sucked out of me. I have been taking pre reqs for the past two semesters. I didn't have that much to do because I already had a Biology minor. I received my acceptance letter today to start the nursing program in January. My only regret is not having done it sooner.
    Last edit by WaitForIt on Oct 24, '13 : Reason: Typo
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    Hello EnRsmom, I have been scanning allnurses for quite some time now, and was wondering if you had any thoughts on the present day job market. I am 36 (37 at Christmas), and a very dissatisfied lawyer. Nursing has been something I've been considering for years, but my law school debt had been too onerous to leave the legal field.
    If you could, and if you're still even looking at these boards, could you give some advice on going back at my age? And if I'd even find a job? I'm in the NYC area, and I hear that it's difficult. The NYC legal market is abysmal, was wondering if the nursing field was as awful.

    Thank you!
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    Wow, your post mirrors my law experience very closely. My first semester as an 1L, I thought I should have hit the bricks. One woman did, who did quite well, and I have never forgotten her. That was a small part of my thought process, and I too did not want to be 'a quitter' and thought all of it would get better and more interesting. Ten years later, it's only gotten worse.

    So now I'm volunteering, only three months now, but I love it. I look forward to my volunteer shift more than I have ever any of my legal work. So I'm thinking about nursing school. But maybe due to my legal-work, I'm thinking all about practicality and job forecasts. Would I be too old at 37 to go back to school to get my RN degree? Would I ever get a job? The legal job market has been so brutal, and I do not want to enter another field that is as punishing as the law market has been.

    I realize you posted this quite some time ago, but just throwing it out there, in case any one would have any advice. Love reading these posts.
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    Maxvoca, just to give you some inspiration: I was in my early 40s when I started nursing school and finished my accelerated program a year later. I had a job offer on graduation day. My colleague graduated with me (not a lawyer) in her early 60s and was also hired on my floor, though a couple of months later since she sat on her application longer than I did. As for student loans, I put mine on deferment while I was in school, and tried to avoid thinking about it while I finished my BSN. Sacrifices were made for a greater good. Follow your heart. It's obviously not in law, mine wasn't either. And most important ... Those networking skills you may have learned in law school? Embrace them in nursing school, because you will be surprised how knowing people gets you working faster. Btw, also in the NYC metro area.


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