Too old for nursing school?

  1. Hi there...

    Many apologies if this is in the wrong forum.

    I'm 41-years young but have taken very good care of myself over the years and am happy to say that I look and feel younger than I am. (is that stuck up of me??!!?)

    Anyway, I've been very seriously considering a career change. I've been working for myself, creating business after business, and have now realized it's time to learn a skill that will be secure and lead me into retirement age. I've always been attracted to nursing (many people have told me over the years I'd be perfect for the job) but always felt I couldn't afford the schooling and should instead work for myself.

    I'm an information sponge, always seeking to educate myself further. I truly love to learn new things, and am excited at the prospect of becoming a nurse.

    My plans are to attend school to achieve my Associate's degree, and then start working as a nurse while working towards my Bachelor's.

    But in the back of my mind I wonder: Am I too old to start down this path? Do you know if there are many others out there who make this career shift late in life? How does it work out for them?

    Please be honest...my feelings won't be hurt. Just really wondering if this is the right thing to do at my age.

    Thank you very much!
    Sassy
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  2. 13 Comments

  3. by   Deb123j
    Not at all!!! I'm 32 and am just now finishing nursing school, so I'm no spring chicken. lol However there are a few 40ish women in my class and they did great and are looking forward to a long career in nursing.
    I say go for it if it's what you really want!!!
    My mom always said she would have liked to be a nurse, but unlike you, she's too chicken! I encouraged her to go back to school when she was in her 50's, but she was too scared. Sad for her...she hates her job.
  4. by   Krissiana
    I just turned 41 and I'm also just starting on my pre-reqs right now for nursing school. I had the same concern about whether I was too old to be doing this career change... but the more I've read on these boards, the more I've noticed that there are actually a lot of people in their 30s, 40s, and 50s who are changing to a career in nursing. I also discussed this with my advisor at school, and she said that they have had a lot of older students in the program and that they typically do great! I was excited to hear that. It is a big leap of faith, but so exciting! Like you, I've always been interested in the nursing field. I've told several friends and family members my decision to do this, expecting to be told I was nuts... but have found that everyone is excited for me and thinks its a great idea. It's funny... I've done a lot of things late. Got married at 34... baby at 38... starting a new career in my 40s! But I think it all keeps me young. I say go for it! :spin:
  5. by   vashtee
    I hope you aren't too old... I just turned 42, and I am in nursing school! (There are three women who are older than me in my class.)
  6. by   Tweety
    Read this: http://allnurses.com/forums/f200/any...fe-125963.html

    If you are in good health, i.e. good back, feet and knees, can handle stress well, and don't mind starting over in an entry level position (sometimes hard to do for the business person who is used to being the boss) and taking direction from others (often whom are young enough to be your child), then you age shouldn't matter.

    Good luck!
  7. by   CT Pixie
    I hope its not too old. I am graduating in 6 months from LPN school. I'll be 39 yrs old at that point. Then its off to the LPN to RN bridge, so the youngest I;ll have my degree is 40.

    Nope, not too old..not too old at all. the average age of my class is mid 30's. Gone are the days were people "our age" in school are considered old foggies
  8. by   TonyFl
    Tell us a little bit more about your background...

    What type businesses were you involved in?

    Did you do sales before?

    What prompted you to think of nursing?

    Do you have family that will support your decision on the amount of schooling needed to get through?


    ~Tony
    Last edit by TonyFl on Dec 5, '07
  9. by   HM2VikingRN
    I am graduating at 47 from an accelerated program. I think that it is an excellent career choice for you.

    Nursing chose me after I ignored my true inclinations for 20 years.

    Pinning 12/14/07.
  10. by   caliotter3
    If you are physically and mentally fit, then you are not too old to start nursing school. I did not start until I was 42. A nursing student was discussed in a post on this site who was, I believe 65. I've known nurses and nursing assistants on the job who were in their 70's. You can do whatever you set your mind to. Good luck.
  11. by   SuesquatchRN
    Wow, I'd love to be 41 again! Seriously!

    I will be taking my RN boards this summer. I took my LPN board a year and a half ago. I'm now looking into which online RN-to-MSN program I want to do. Probably Excelsior.

    You dead? No? Then you're not too old.
  12. by   Sassy66
    Thanks to all of you for your wonderful thoughts and support and honesty. It means so much to me.

    I have discovered the other forums (students, articles, etc.) and lo and behold, there pinned at the top of the Success Stories forum is a thread about entering nursing later in life:

    http://allnurses.com/forums/f200/any...fe-125963.html

    I found that very helpful too. Although there's 51 pages and I only got up to around page 7. Looks like a really great thread for me to read, so I'll continue on when I have the time.

    I'm just happily surprised to have found this site. Everyone seems so helpful -- what a wonderful support group!

    Tell us a little bit more about your background...

    What type businesses were you involved in?

    Did you do sales before?

    What prompted you to think of nursing?

    Do you have family that will support your decision on the amount of schooling needed to get through?
    Thanks for asking...

    I've done many, many things throughout my adult life. Some have been home-based, some not:

    Bank Teller
    Marketing Assistant
    Court Reporter (carpral tunnel symptoms forced me to stop which was a bummer because I made GREAT money!!)
    Sales/Marketing
    Food/Cocktail Waitress
    Community Relations Manager
    Personal Chef

    Which brings me up to today -- Nutritional Consultant. I'm FASCINATED with the way the human body works. This is what prompted me to look deeper into the health care field. Then I started to read so much about the shortage of nursing so I investigated.

    I love the thought of learning a skill that can translate into helping people (like many of you, I have a wonderful nurse in my past who I'll never forget), making good money, job security, and flexibility -- but mostly just continuing on the path of learning more about the wonders of the human body.

    Yes, I have a fantastically beautiful hubby who has always supported me no matter what -- even through all the crazy jobs. He's my biggest cheerleader. I just love him to bits. He makes good money, but it won't last forever -- so we're planning for our future and it's my turn to figure out what I can do that will support us (since nothing else seems to have worked for me...grrrrrrr). Nursing just seems to offer everything I'm looking for and need.

    Wow, this is getting long. I'll shut up now.

    Happy day, Everyone! And thanks again.
  13. by   Satori77
    Not at all. Not if physically you are fit and mentally you can handle the stress. It is all about attitude and what you are passionate about. I am 30 and taking my prereqs....will probably be mid-30's when I start nursing school. My mother who just turned 60 is an LPN and I have been trying to convince her for years to go for her RN, but she thinks she is too old. I applaud you for even considering it and looking at your options.
  14. by   ABSNnursingstudent08
    I was 45 when I decided to pursue my pre-reqs and at 47 started an accelerated BSN program, which I finish this coming May when I'll be 48. Old?? It's a natural process to become older, wiser, smarter, grayer, more sure of yourself, more confident, and know what you want. If that's being "old," I'll take it.:spin:

    In school, you'll know a heck of a lot more than the 20-somethings b/c you've lived, have done a lot, and already have a "resume" of life and work. Go for it--it's hard work but you get through each step and build on each previous step taken. I'm doing it now, so can you.

    God speed!


    Quote from Sassy66
    Hi there...

    Many apologies if this is in the wrong forum.

    I'm 41-years young but have taken very good care of myself over the years and am happy to say that I look and feel younger than I am. (is that stuck up of me??!!?)

    Anyway, I've been very seriously considering a career change. I've been working for myself, creating business after business, and have now realized it's time to learn a skill that will be secure and lead me into retirement age. I've always been attracted to nursing (many people have told me over the years I'd be perfect for the job) but always felt I couldn't afford the schooling and should instead work for myself.

    I'm an information sponge, always seeking to educate myself further. I truly love to learn new things, and am excited at the prospect of becoming a nurse.

    My plans are to attend school to achieve my Associate's degree, and then start working as a nurse while working towards my Bachelor's.

    But in the back of my mind I wonder: Am I too old to start down this path? Do you know if there are many others out there who make this career shift late in life? How does it work out for them?

    Please be honest...my feelings won't be hurt. Just really wondering if this is the right thing to do at my age.

    Thank you very much!
    Sassy

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