I live in Southern California. I'm looking heavily at WGU - I currently work three 12 hour shifts per week and will need to maintain that through nursing school
as I cannot afford to not work. WGU seems like a great opportunity to allow me to keep working and go to nursing school.
I've looked at other nursing programs
including ABSN programs, and most do not recommend working. Programs like Concorida University Irvine is enticing because it's 15 months; however, their website says don't work and you'll need to devote 40+ hours a week to classroom and clinicals. Some of the other ABSN programs in the area are 2 years, making them almost the same length as WGU. My other option would be go to a community college ADN program and then do an online RN to BSN program, which would take 3 years.
My main question is, as far as job prospects, does WGU vs ABSN vs CC RN to BSN make a difference? Do employers look at them differently? Does one offer better networking opportunities than the other? What about better hospitals more friendly to new grads?
My wife is an RN and she said the mistake she made in her ADN program was selecting a hospital for clinicals that generally didn't hire new grads, thus, it took her a long time to find a job compared to other classmates who did clinicals at "less prestigious" hospitals and got new grad spots right away. I know WGU uses some great hospitals such as Cedars Sinai and Huntington Memorial Hospital, which would be great learning experiences; however, what are the chances of getting picked up at a place like that as a new grad? I worry it would not set me up to network for a new grad position.
Any thoughts or insight?