Looking For a Little Direction

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    Ok, so I am looking to change careers and want to get into nursing. Currently I have a bachelors in Business and I am 30 years old. I wanted to go back and get my nursing degree but don't know where to start! I was thinking of getting my CNA in hopes that I will be able to get into a BSN or ASN program quicker. Obviously I am not getting any younger and I would like to not have to wait 5 years before I get accepted. Any hints/tips/trick or even paths I should take to fulfill this?
  2. 9 Comments so far...

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    tnohe1 a LOT of the programs I'm looking into (including, now, the PA program as my plan B) require hands-on experience which, for nursing schools, typically comes in the form of a CNA or MA background. I considered both but MA is a year or so and a CNA was two months. It goes without saying that I invested in the shorter (and less costly) option.

    I'd recommend starting there. I took my course with a gal who was changing careers at 40 and thought for sure this is what she wanted to do. Two weeks into the program, she dropped it because she realized that she didn't want to be a nurse afterall, she wanted to be a baker or something. (Or open a restaurant...it was food related, I know that...) She told me how thankful she was that she'd only invested the relatively small amount of money into a CNA course to learn whether or not the field was her passion, rather than to go through the process of getting everything lined up to go to nursing school...only to discover that's not where she wanted to be.

    But I'd say start getting the experience ASAP. I figured out a few years ago I wanted to try this path and I took my CNA immediately after finding out I needed it for one of the schools I planned on applying to. It just showed me that this is truly where I want to be and I made the right choice.
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    Thanks Sakura, that is kind of along the same lines of my thinking. I am not satisfied with my career up until now and think I will be if I became a nurse. But your right if I can do the CNA thing and truly find out if this is what I want to do why not, it can only help with getting into schools. Thanks again
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    You're welcome! Good luck to you!
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    Quote from tnohe1
    Ok, so I am looking to change careers and want to get into nursing. Currently I have a bachelors in Business and I am 30 years old. I wanted to go back and get my nursing degree but don't know where to start! I was thinking of getting my CNA in hopes that I will be able to get into a BSN or ASN program quicker. Obviously I am not getting any younger and I would like to not have to wait 5 years before I get accepted. Any hints/tips/trick or even paths I should take to fulfill this?
    Hi tnohe,

    Congrats as you start on this new path, it's a big decision to go back to school!

    As far as the CNA, check the admission requirements of the school's you are interested in as many in Oregon don't give you any admission credit/points if you are a CNA. That's not to say there aren't other benefits from working as a CNA, but if you're doing to be accepted faster....just make sure that's something that is looked at by your school.

    FWIW I got accepted to both schools I applied to, my first year.....and I wasn't a CNA.

    I wish you the best of everything as you move forward!!!!

    Peace,
    CuriousMe
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    Quote from tnohe1
    Ok, so I am looking to change careers and want to get into nursing. Currently I have a bachelors in Business and I am 30 years old. I wanted to go back and get my nursing degree but don't know where to start! I was thinking of getting my CNA in hopes that I will be able to get into a BSN or ASN program quicker. Obviously I am not getting any younger and I would like to not have to wait 5 years before I get accepted. Any hints/tips/trick or even paths I should take to fulfill this?
    You are the perfect candidate for an accelerated BSN program. You don't have to be a CNA to get into school - I had zero clinical experience when I was accepted. The accelerated BSN programs like the diversity of second degree candidates, as do your future employers. Look into it, they are good programs with the added bonus of being in and out quickly...
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    What everyone is failing to tell you is that there are no jobs for new nursing graduates. I do not anticipate this improving for some time. There is a large pool of nursing grads in the Portland Vancouver area who are unemployed with more being added to their numbers every month. If you do it do not expect instant employment. Best of Luck, nursing shortage? umm not so much..
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    I've been accepted to 2 accelerated BSN programs, one of them in Portland. it may even take you some time to be eligible to apply, even with a degree. It took me almost a year, alot of changes and no small sum of money just to get the prerequisites done. But, it has worked, and now I'm headed in. I had no experience.

    I've also had nurses tell me a CNA and a RN aren't that close in regards to job responsibilities, depending on the RN's job. so it might not be a good benchmark.

    I will say this though, if you are hard-lined on living in Portland you might think again about "nursing shortage". it doesn't appear to be the case there. I don't currently live in OR, and after having read some of these posts I'm starting to lean towards staying in the south. Lots of opportunities here. it just depends on your flexibility... which is true in any profession almost.

    Good luck.
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    I decided March of 2009 that I hated my career path so much that I was going to go back to school to get into nursing. I graduated in 2003 with a BS in Health Education and was planning to go on to nursing school after that but life happened. This year I applied to 2 schools and did not get in. I did plan on taking A&P over since it had been 10 years and I got B's -> which back then was good! Since I have another year to take A&P over again and to apply to schools again, I have decided to do the CNA route. Everyone has their own oppinion on how you get into to school and if becoming a CNA is worth it. I lost the job I hated so much last month so I have time and I figured doing something in the Medical field is a hell of a lot better than sitting at a desk pushing papers around for another year!
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    Quote from tnohe1
    Ok, so I am looking to change careers and want to get into nursing. Currently I have a bachelors in Business and I am 30 years old. I wanted to go back and get my nursing degree but don't know where to start! I was thinking of getting my CNA in hopes that I will be able to get into a BSN or ASN program quicker. Obviously I am not getting any younger and I would like to not have to wait 5 years before I get accepted. Any hints/tips/trick or even paths I should take to fulfill this?
    Hi tnohe1, wanted to echo the post about your being a great candidate for an accelerated bsn program. Your previous degree and experience will only enhance what you have to bring to the table should you decide to go into nursing.

    I decided to pursue my bsn at age 37, with my first degree in History. I worked full time for a while and took pre-requisites at PCC in Portland. I quit my job after 3 quarters and dedicated my time to school. I ended up going to Villanova University (outside of Philadelphia, PA) for their accelerated bsn which was 14 months. (I would hardly call my bsn "accelerated" however, since it ended up taking me 2 years and 7 months to complete when you count all the pre-reqs.)

    Can't give you advice about the CNA route. I've heard people say it's a great way to decide if you like bedside nursing, but I didn't go that route. I knew I wanted to be a nurse and just went for it.

    Graduated in July 09 and passed the NCLEX in October. Diligently looked for work for MONTHS in the Portland area. Seriously, job hunting was sheer HELL. But I'm happy to say that I have a full time job now as an RN at an assisted living facility. I am nervous about getting rusty with my medical nursing skills, but I certainly consider myself an RN, what with the case managment, education, assessment and delegation that are all part of my job description. Anyway, by the time you graduate from nursing school the economic situation will hopefully be entirely different.

    Best of luck to you in whatever you decide!


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