Quote from lilboboxox
wow, thanks for all the replies!
i have been working with my academic advisor and dean. they both advised that i go straight into graduate school to get my NP/CNS without any RN experience THEN work as a RN for a year with my master's degree to get the necessary experience, as strange as that sounds . . .
they said by doing this, i won't feel like i'm stuck with bedside nursing (they both know i'm more of an academic person and will be likely to end up in nursing research) and can easily move onto something else with a master's degree if i wish. makes sense, right?
inputs please! thanks a bunch
That's not a horrible plan and it might be right for you. I've known some people who have done this and it has worked out OK for them. However, keep in mind these few things.
1. While you are taking your graduate level courses without the benefit of practical experience ... your learning might be decreased because of that lack of experience. It often helps a person to understand complex material when they can relate it to their personal experiences. Experience can also help you see subtle nuances in the material that you would otherwise miss.
2. You will need to get some of that "beginner-level" experience after you graduate with your MSN ... and the MSN might make it hard to find the right job. Some people may not want to hire you if they feel you are only looking for a short-term job to get some experience you don't really want. By getting the MSN first, you might be setting yourself up for a bad first experience in the work world.
I think the best option for someone in your position is to graduate with your BSN and go through a standard new-grad orientation in the summer following your graduation. Then, start grad school part-time in January or in the following fall. It would delay your graduate school by very little ... while giving you the practical experience that will help you in so many ways. (You may also qualify for some tuition reimbursement that will help pay for grad school!)
If, after getting half-way through grad school on a part-time basis, you want to quit your job to go to school full time ... or just work part-time ... you will be in a position to do that without compromising either your education or your development through experience.
In the long run, you would end up at the same place in your career at the same time. ... But you would have the benefit of that practical experience that would help you get the most from your MSN education.
Personally, I worked full time as a staff nurse for 2 years, then quit my job and went to school full time for my MSN. That worked well for me. After working 10 years as a CNS and in Staff Development, I went back to school full time for my PhD.
llg (PhD, RN)