This is also posted in the NP section, I hope that isn't a faux pas.
I've almost two years experience in Occupational Health Nursing. I'll sit for the COHN-S by November. I Have a BS/Chem; a BS/Safety Studies and an Assoc. D. in Nursing. Prior experience: 6 months Med/Surg; 8 months Adult ICU at a major tertiary hospital. I left there due to stress (and increasing BP) and a 2.5 hour/day commute plus reversing 12 hour shifts. I fell into Occupational Health Nursing and love it. My BP w/o meds now averages 117/67, at the ICU it averaged 168/95 w/meds.
I'd like to become ANP but with a focus in Occupational Health. But where, and how? I enjoy musculoskeletal issues, toxics, and emerging science like nano stuff. I'm quite passionate about problems that need solving.
I'm not young, and have $30k in loans already. It's getting to the point that I'll be paying long after people then my age will be retired. So cost is a factor. I live in NH and so the best places would have to be in NH/MA. Harvard/Simmons has a sub-specialty in Occ Health. Maybe any old ANP will do with the sub-specialty taken at Harvard/Simmons.
NIOSH has grants for the Harvard/Simmons sub-specialty, but I don't think they do for any, nor does there seem to be an ANP/subspecialty combo in Occ Health Nursing....
I'm 57. Age is the only thing that I lie about...everyone in my work life thinks that I'm 46. (I look young and am very fit). At age 57, having a loan with a 25 year payback, I'll still be paying at age 84. Now I do hope to be still working (or alive) then...I cannot imagine retiring but.... see the quandary? Also consider that twenty years in the future most industries will have as employees only two... one a dog, and the other a man. The man is there to feed the dog, the dog is there to make sure the man doesn't touch anything. *grin* But I'm willing to travel to Outer Sumanatstyan if necessary, there will always be work...
Have we any experienced Occ Health Nurses that might be willing to write or talk with me about suggestions or options? I have thought about programs in WA and NC and could move. Trying to figure out the best path gives me a HA.
I'm acutely aware of the need to plan a path, and to plan ahead in this rapidly changing world to be in demand. (Especially at 84!)
We could all be twins in this post. I have the same type of past and "found" myself living and loving it in Occ Health at 46. After 22 years military and 6 years FD/EMT-P I am a late bloomer into nursing. I complete my online BSN next year and have sign up as a "prospective student" for the UAB Adult NP with emphasis in Occ health afterwards. The beauty of using UAB is that it is a NIOSH center and you will be elligile for 100% tuition assistance. If you go to there website there are points of contacts to head you down the right path. This can be done for the most part "on-line" and at your local area with minimum on-site requirements. Good luck and let me know how you make out,
Last edit by traumaRUs on May 12, '09
: Reason: Please don't include email addys in your posts. Thanks.