I just finished my first semester of the RN program this spring. I actually applied for the LPN program at Owens at the same time as the RN because of the wait list for the RN. I had a high GPA for my pre-reqs, but still I'd heard at that time that I'd have at least a year to wait. I thought, why not work as a LPN while doing my RN, ha!...Earn money AND, more importantly these days, earn experience.
So, I thought the LPN would be a breeze, but amazingly VERY difficult. Quite an accomplishment in the end, though, and so happy I did it. Like I said, applied to RN too, and did get accepted to Fall 08 class, but after deciding on LPN first, asked to defer to Spring of 09 so able to complete the year of LPN. Again, so glad. So, started the RN program before I even took my NCLEX-PN. Now, working as a LPN, passing meds, doing assessments, etc....gaining valuable experience as about to begin 2nd semester of RN. Didn't do the bridge for LPNs since a wait list into 2011 last heard.
Okay, so partial to LPN first, but just my experience. My RN first semester was totally a breeze, but great refresher for me. Next semester should be more difficult with patho, but looking forward to it since I like the science side of nursing.
As for professors, the gossip is so crazy. For ex., my LPN pharm teacher (same pharm as RN) had our class going to our LPN dept head in a rage, and if you were to speak to 75% of those students, they'd tell you to avoid her at all costs. The students in my RN class who had the very same teacher (I didn't have to take the class, as already did), and especially a student in my clinical who thought she was the absolute best and wanted to make sure and schedule her for other nursing courses, thought she was great. So weird. I'm about to take an online patho class that is taught by a teacher that I was warned against (hoping and praying their wrong!!), but really, the same students who do well in any class will have the qualities to do well with a more demanding teacher....as for fairness, I do know of some clinical instructors who will remind you why they say nurses eat their young...just be quiet, do your work, and don't try to take on those people. Trust me, I'm in my first job as a nurse, and the Owens instructors are nothing compared to what you'll see in practice. Just take it as great experience for dealing with people you wouldn't choose to have anything to do with (and helpful to realize most people wouldn't either) if you had the choice when it comes to the unfair ones...
One thing, get your micro and any other science out of the way before you start NS. I've seen some ugly experiences for people who don't (save first semester nursing for pure nursing, trust me).
good luck guys