Letting the market determine whether I can go straight to PMHNP

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    Hello all! I was considering whether I should graduate from college with a BSN and go straight for the PMHNP degree, or take a year off in between college and graduate school and get some work experience. I know I want to provide counseling and prescribe medication in a mental health setting. I'm interested in some Psych RN duties as well, especially if I could work in an outpatient clinic. But ultimately, I want to be a Psych NP -- the role sounds most interesting to me.

    What do you all think of this compromise: Go straight from BSN to grad school, but with the knowledge that I might find after grad school that I can only get Psych RN jobs -- and I'm okay with that. As far as I can tell, there's no financial loss in taking this route, except perhaps some additional interest charges if I can't get the NP job right out of grad school. There is potential financial gain if my first year salary is that of an NP instead of that of Psych RN. And in terms of job satisfaction, there is only potential for gain, as I'd have the chance to go straight into the job I want.

    Are there any factors I'm missing out on that I should consider when making this decision?
  2. 4 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    I am biased because I'm doing something similar (going directly to PMHNP with little RN experience), so my tendency is to encourage you to go for it. If you're absolutely certain that PMHNP is what you want, I see no need to wait to get there, especially considering how tuition is skyrocketing each year. Like you said, you can always work as a RN after you graduate, if you can't find a NP position. Just be certain that psych NP is the position you want.
  4. 0
    Go for it. I wished I could have done that. I just ran out is steam. Now, I plan to go back. Why suffer on the floor?
  5. 1
    Quote from NJnewRN
    Go for it. I wished I could have done that. I just ran out is steam. Now, I plan to go back. Why suffer on the floor?
    s

    Couldn't agree more. With psych there's no reason to do your time in the trenches first. Go for it while you've got the motivation. I'm debating going back now. It's harder; I'm older and lots of things to juggle. Good luck to you!
    myelin likes this.
  6. 0
    I think you're fine to go straight through, but keep in mind that you may not be able to get an RN job after you graduate. I have a friend that recently got her WHNP degree and there are no jobs in her area (she's had two excellent offers, but she couldn't move to take them, so it really is the job market where she is.). She has 5 years RN experience and has been applying for woman's health specialty RN jobs and hasn't even gotten an interview. So if you really want RN experience, then I'd say you need to get that now and just work during school.


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