Share you Deaconess Experiences!

  1. I've started looking into the Deaconess route for the LPN to RN program.

    I'd appreciate it if anyone would share their experiences (good and bad) with Deaconess, even if you decided not to enroll... and why. What was the typical wait list like?

    Thanks!
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  2. 78 Comments

  3. by   NICURNtobe
    I'll graduate from Deaconess in July. It has been a wonderful experience!! As far as wait lists - It's easier to get in for the LPN-RN program. There are fewer applicants.
  4. by   bmw804
    I am also considering Deaconess along with two other schools. I will have to quit working my current job if accepted into the other schools, because they are during the day. I sent in my application and transcripts at the end of December to Deaconess. I haven't heard anything yet. I sent in my materials to an accelerated program BSN program two weeks ago and they did respond just stating that they received my materials.
  5. by   Jo Dirt
    Hope you've got a fat wallet. Or you don't mind going $20,000+ in debt.
    Be careful, just today I was listening to the Dave Ramsey Show (he's a financial counselor) and a woman called in and said after her school loan went through and paid out $20,000 the distance learning school she was going through (a distance learning program called Academy School of Nursing out of Utah) lost its accreditation and she would likely not get her refund back for her tuition. Which means she is left holding the bag, paying back $20,000 FOR NOTHING!

    If there is a way at all I would choose Excelsior College. A fraction of the cost and they have been around almost 30 yrs.. Don't let people scare you into thinking that no one is accepting EC grads and they can't find jobs. Thousands of nurses graduate from EC every year and they find jobs. Even in states which have locked them out for the time being (there are only two right now: California and Kansas) it will not likely be a permanent thing. In fact, EC is working with California at this time to work out an externship so EC grads can fulfill the clinical requirement that California wants nurses to have.
  6. by   mona b RN
    Quote from kate930
    I've started looking into the Deaconess route for the LPN to RN program.

    I'd appreciate it if anyone would share their experiences (good and bad) with Deaconess, even if you decided not to enroll... and why. What was the typical wait list like?

    Thanks!
    Hi Kate,

    I would be happy to share my experiences with DCN. I am pretty happy with the program. The instructors are great and I am learning a lot. Currently, I am in my 4 semester and I will graduate in Dec 05. The pros of this program would be the online format/delivery and the autonomy that it provides. The cons are that communication could be better and the traveling to St Louis each semester.

    If your interested, go for it. I think that the other poster who said that the waiting list is much shorter for the LPN is correct.

    Feel free to pm me for more info and good luck in whatever you decide.
  7. by   LTNurse
    Quote from LPNtoRN
    Hope you've got a fat wallet. Or you don't mind going $20,000+ in debt.
    Be careful, just today I was listening to the Dave Ramsey Show (he's a financial counselor) and a woman called in and said after her school loan went through and paid out $20,000 the distance learning school she was going through (a distance learning program called Academy School of Nursing out of Utah) lost its accreditation and she would likely not get her refund back for her tuition. Which means she is left holding the bag, paying back $20,000 FOR NOTHING!

    If there is a way at all I would choose Excelsior College. A fraction of the cost and they have been around almost 30 yrs.. Don't let people scare you into thinking that no one is accepting EC grads and they can't find jobs. Thousands of nurses graduate from EC every year and they find jobs. Even in states which have locked them out for the time being (there are only two right now: California and Kansas) it will not likely be a permanent thing. In fact, EC is working with California at this time to work out an externship so EC grads can fulfill the clinical requirement that California wants nurses to have.
    Academy of Nursing can't in any way be compared to Deaconess since they were not an accredited College, they were a school that " according to them helped" you get prepared to get your degree through EC; a while back EC would accept Medical Assistants so Academy of Nurse for $20,000.00+ would help you become a Medical Assistant and prepare you for the EC and CLEP exams you needed, they even had a CPNE workshop for additional money. Once EC no longer accepted Medical Assistants they started to offer EMT training to prepare you for EC and so forth. The reason I know this is that when I had to drop my Nursing School in Hawaii I did a research on them to see if I could qualify for EC but I had a bad feeling so I stayed away (Thank goodness). I'm very happy with Deaconess College of Nursing, I feel like I'm getting a great education and worth every penny I'm paying. Yesterday I was working a 12 hour shift for my clinical (I have 216 clinical hours this semester) and I was silently thinking about how grateful I am for having the opportunity to complete my degree under my current circumstances and the only way I'm doing it is because of Deaconess College of Nursing. Also Deaconess has been around for very long time as well; since 1949 to be more exact (that's when they started admiting lay students, before that it was only for nuns), in the fall of 2000, they started the RN-BSN program online and in 2001 they received the authorization to start the online ASN. SO the online program is faily new but the tradicional on campus program is very old and established. Deaconess is not a Virtual University, they are an acredited college with Campus based programs who has an online option, but even the online programs are not 100% online since you do have to go on Campus in St. Luois at the end of each semester to do a validation with your instructors; if a person don't pass the validation they wont pass the class. The validation is considered a continuum of your clinical hours and for example last semester my validation was 2 days and this semester is suppose to be 32 hours of clinical validation in St. Louis. Deaconess and EC are two different Colleges who offer an option to get your degree at a distance but even then they can't be compared because Deaconess teaches you how to be a nurse even if you don't have any medical background through classes and clinicals just like any other Nursing School and EC validates through Challenge Examinations and a final Clinical examination the knowledge you have acquired through your previous experiences who may enable you to become an RN such as LPN's who have acquired this knowledge through their experience working in a hospitals. They are both good programs, it all boils down to your expereince and needs; EC is a great program for people who have prior knowledge and just need a degree to prove it and Deaconess is great for those who want to start from the bottom but can't go to a regular campus for longer that a week per semester (you'll spend about 5 days per semester at the Deaconess Campus in St. Louis). Yes, certain things about Deaconess such as tuition prices could be better but in general it's a great program and I'm very happy with it.
    LTNUrse
  8. by   Jo Dirt
    Quote from LTNurse
    The reason I know this is that when I had to drop my Nursing School in Hawaii I did a research on them to see if I could qualify for EC but I had a bad feeling so I stayed away (Thank goodness)...snip LTNUrse
    Why did you have a bad feeling about Excelsior?

    Mona, you know why I've got it in for Deaconess, they are a major rip.
    I considered going through Deaconess, but aside from the loopy woman I talked to in admissions (which turned me off) the cost just repelled me away for good.

    Excelsior College is the best in the land, here I sit with a degree in my hand...
  9. by   DutchgirlRN
    Quote from LPNtoRN
    Why did you have a bad feeling about Excelsior?
    Excelsior College is the best in the land, here I sit with a degree in my hand...
    I graduated from EC 3 years ago and feel I got a very good education. You get out of it what you put into it. I did not use any "for-profit" study guides. I used the free EC study guides, purchased the texts suggested in the study guide through www.half.com. You don't have to get the current most expensive edition. Suppose they suggest the 12th edition, buy the 11th edition, the info is the same and the book is much, much cheaper. I passed each test with an A or a B. Courses took me anywhere from 6 weeks - 6 months to prepare for (A&P, Micro). My education cost me very little.

    I have never had a co-worker or manager comment about my education. In fact when I was interviewed for my current position the nurse manager didn't even ask me where I went to school. They don't care except that you passed NCLEX and have a current license. People rarely ask where I went to Nursing School but I don't mind telling them if they do. The usual reaction is wow, that is so hard to do you should be proud of yourself. It's not hard intellectually, it's hard to keep yourself motivated for 2 years. I am very proud of what I have been able to accompolish as an RN. I have moved up very quickly in 3 years. Nothing has ever been mentioned about my education. It has to do with the pride I take in my work, that's what gets noticed and talked about. Good Luck.
  10. by   LTNurse
    Quote from LPNtoRN
    Why did you have a bad feeling about Excelsior?

    Mona, you know why I've got it in for Deaconess, they are a major rip.
    I considered going through Deaconess, but aside from the loopy woman I talked to in admissions (which turned me off) the cost just repelled me away for good.

    Excelsior College is the best in the land, here I sit with a degree in my hand...
    I didn't mean a bad feeling abou EC, I had a bad feeling about Academy of Nursing since I didn't qualify for EC because I didn't have a medical background. If I had medical experience I would have applied to EC.
    LTNurse
  11. by   fry.girl
    kate930,

    I am currently in my second semester of Deaconess's ASN program and would like to first assure you that DCN's ASN program has been NLNAC accredited since November 1991 and was just reviewed for continued accredition this past Fall and was awarded full renewal. The Fall 2004 NLNAC visit result is not yet available online but will be soon and will speak for itself. see www.nlnac.org

    Personally I have been very happy with Deaconess. I have received the education and support that I need to be meet my career goals as well as the financial assistance I required to meet tuition costs. Because I had no previous medical experience, Deaconess was the only program out there that could offer me the luxury of accredited distance learning. I was very fortunate to find wonder support with a local hospital for my clinical experience and have been offered as much precepted instruction as I want each semester.

    I suggest DCN to anyone who wants to begin or further their nursing education. The program has its strengths and weaknesses like any other, but it is certainly a pioneer in distance nursing education.

    If you would like more information you can feel free to IM me.

    Cheri
  12. by   mona b RN
    Quote from LTNurse
    I didn't mean a bad feeling abou EC, I had a bad feeling about Academy of Nursing since I didn't qualify for EC because I didn't have a medical background. If I had medical experience I would have applied to EC.
    LTNurse

    I knew what you meant LT.
  13. by   fry.girl
    Quote from mona b
    Believe it or not some people do not have a problem taking out loans to finance educational endeavors.
    People spend money (take out loans) on cars, houses, vacations, etc all the time without thinking twice. IMHO my Deaconess tuition is an investment in myself and is priceless and guess what...I AM WORTH IT.

    I in no way view or suggest that those who spent less $$ on their education are less qualified, and I don't take too kindly to those that classify my decision to attend Deaconess as "being ripped".

    Yes there are options out there...EC is a great one, and so is DCN.

    GO DEACONESS!!!!!

    Cheri
  14. by   Jo Dirt
    Quote from DutchgirlRN
    I graduated from EC 3 years ago and feel I got a very good education. You get out of it what you put into it. I did not use any "for-profit" study guides. I used the free EC study guides, purchased the texts suggested in the study guide through www.half.com. You don't have to get the current most expensive edition. Suppose they suggest the 12th edition, buy the 11th edition, the info is the same and the book is much, much cheaper. I passed each test with an A or a B. Courses took me anywhere from 6 weeks - 6 months to prepare for (A&P, Micro). My education cost me very little.
    Know what you mean about the publishing comapny study guides. I haven't gone through any publishing companies and thank goodness, they will take you to the cleaners (and I have seen one of the study guides from Moore Publishing for A&P, it didn't tell you a thing you couldn't learn from the free study guide from Excelsior).
    Since December '04 I have taken NC 1, 3, 4, A&P and Microbiology using nothing but the EC study guides and that may be a lot to take in a few weeks but I have managed to pass with a B on every one so far (taking NC 5 next week), which should tell you something about how thorough the EC study guides are. I prepared for A&P in two weeks and Microbiology in about 4 days...though I wouldn't suggest doing that if you want to keep your sanity, 5 minutes of my day didn't go by I wasn't studying in some form or another.
    Anyhow, this isn't about Deaconess, sorry OP.
    I would like to ask the OP why she doesn't consider Excelsior? Excelsior isn't a fly by night school with a terrible reputation or anything, and if you compare the cost to Deaconess you can't beat it.

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