I think it depends on your preferences and your program. Obviously, this varies. I took the opposite approach to school. In every program, more or less, first and second years are crucial. These years are the foundation of nursing practise. Assessment, anatomy, patho. You need to learn the basics well. I worked very little during school in my first and second years. Third and fourth year, I worked an average of two- three shifts per week. Remember, you need to eat and pay bills, but this is also going to be your career. I've noticed that many new nurses are shell shocked the first year of working, simply because they don't have a good handle on the basics of nursing. Good luck!