Direct Entry Programs- How hard to get in? - page 42

Thanks for all of your responses to all of my previous posts. As you probably assume, I'm evaluating all of my options including ADN, BSN, and Direct-Entry MSN. The direct entry programs look... Read More

  1. by   NP-to-be
    Quote from CAG12345
    Well, my mailman FINALLY came through for me today, double...

    I got waitlisted at MGH. (I applied to the ANP track).

    I got waitlisted at Vanderbilt too, to the ANP track. I expected the waitlist at best after they told me by phone that they had already accepted all they had room for before they finished reviewing my app, which was sent in two months after their recommended date b/c I learned of their program late.

    Vanderbilt's letter though is very positive, "I am pleased to inform you that your application to the Adult Nurse Practitioner Program in the MSN program at Vandberilt U SON has been approved for full-time study." Then they go on to say their '05 class is full currently so they've put me on the wait list. Maybe that means that if no one gets off the wait list I wouldn't have to go through the whole rigamarole next year.

    Anyway both MGH and Vanderbilt say if openings occur they often don't occur until July, so to be ready to go at any moment. They don't ask for any money, but Vanderbilt wants a signed form stating I want to be on the waitlist and a promise that I'm finishing my prereqs. Both want me to send in/complete my financial aid forms.

    Anyway, thanks for hanging in there with me everyone. I am enjoying reading about everyone's decisions. I myself this past weekend found myself feeling ambivalent about leaving where I live. Spring has sprung here in Sonoma County, CA, flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, the redwoods are beautiful right outside my window, and I had a lovely time with my significant other, whom I would miss alot if I left. I do believe things happen for a reason, so whatever happens for this year, I'll be ok.
    CAG - You sound like you're doing quite well with the news! It's great that you can really look at the bright side of the situation - that will serve you well in anything you do !! I also believe things happen for a reason ... keep believing and see what the CA spring brings your way.

    Congrats on two waitlists :hatparty:

    - Jen

    p.s. and maxwell is right ... spring is a long way off for us bostonians = ( enjoy sunny CA while you can !!
  2. by   smile123
    Quote from CAG12345
    I got waitlisted at Vanderbilt too, to the ANP track.

    Vanderbilt's letter though is very positive, "I am pleased to inform you that your application to the Adult Nurse Practitioner Program in the MSN program at Vandberilt U SON has been approved for full-time study." Then they go on to say their '05 class is full currently so they've put me on the wait list. Maybe that means that if no one gets off the wait list I wouldn't have to go through the whole rigamarole next year.

    Anyway both MGH and Vanderbilt say if openings occur they often don't occur until July, so to be ready to go at any moment.
    I do believe things happen for a reason, so whatever happens for this year, I'll be ok.
    CAG12345 I would check with Vanderbilt to verify being on the waitlist this year guarantees you ANP placement next year. Most other schools start the process over and evaluate everyone from scratch each year. For example, being on UCSF's waitlist does not give you an automatic entry into their program the following year. It's so competitive now that you can't take something like that for granted. It's good to set your expectations with the school correctly. I wouldn't want to see you with a false sense of security

    I am keeping positive thoughts that you will be accepted off the wait list this year!

    Smile123
  3. by   NP-to-be
    Quote from NP-to-be
    Hi Jess - I have gone back and forth all weekend! I'm back to Simmons being my top choice ... I think It's interesting because not only is it the lowest ranked school that I've been accepted to but also the most expensive (not dramatically though, so I am comfortable w/it). I just have a nagging gut feeling that it's the right choice for me ...

    Over the weekend I spoke to a family friend who has been an NP in the Boston area for 20+ years. Her opinion was that all three schools are held in relatively the same regard, at least in the Northeast, which was reassuring for me. She also has a very high opinion of Simmons which was nice.

    I have a request into MGH to arrange a visit - hopefully for Monday (3/21). I will keep you posted if you're still interested in visiting? I haven't contacted BC yet but I think I will. Do you have plans to go? I'm going to Simmons on Monday as well to sit in on a class and meet some current students. I am hoping these visits will do it for me :uhoh21:

    How about you? You sound to be leaning towards BC? I thought getting in was the tough part ... but this is NOT an easy decision !!

    -Jen
    Hey Jess - Any more thoughts on if you'll visit BC / MGH. MGH is not being very responsive to my request for a visit ... hmmm.
  4. by   CAG12345
    Quote from smile123
    CAG12345 I would check with Vanderbilt to verify being on the waitlist this year guarantees you ANP placement next year. Most other schools start the process over and evaluate everyone from scratch each year. For example, being on UCSF's waitlist does not give you an automatic entry into their program the following year. It's so competitive now that you can't take something like that for granted. It's good to set your expectations with the school correctly. I wouldn't want to see you with a false sense of security

    I am keeping positive thoughts that you will be accepted off the wait list this year!

    Smile123
    Hi Smile,

    That will be my next move. I don't like to make any assumptions either. I was bright-siding it last night after the letter arrived. I plan to call them to check on this, but suspect some good news because they have both a rolling admissions policy and the offer to accepted candidates of deferring for one year after acceptance. I'm very aware from reading all the fine print on the other programs that this is definitely not the usual policy with these programs.

    If I CAN "defer" if no room opens up on the waitlist, it might work out well, because then I can apply to the West Coast schools I am also interested in but was too late in the year (or too slim on the prereqs) this past year to apply for, or didn't know about yet (UCSF-long shot, I know, among 4-5 others), and see if I get an offer on the West Coast to choose from. That would give me more time to sort out my feelings about possibly leaving the sig other, save up money (maybe my condo could appreciate more because I am destitute otherwise and have too many Staffords out already), maybe have a semester where I'm not going to school every hour I'm not working or needing to sleep, etc.

    I will also ask about the my number on the waitlist to see what I can find out. Great suggestions. I appreciate you (and everyone in this group) looking out for me/each other through this process.
  5. by   CAG12345
    Quote from future nurse jess
    Darn it! CAG- I'm so sad/annoyed/confused on your behalf! You seem to be taking it very well- and Smile is right- you have an excellent chance of getting off the waitlist. I am going to send my decline letter to MGH in this week- but I don't know if that will help you because I'm Adult/Women's Health track. Definitely find out where you are on the waitlist. My sense from my friend who was waitlisted last year (and again this year) was they only create a limited # of waitlist spots (2 or 3) for each specialty. And if all else fails- that is wonderful that you are guaranteed a spot in next year's class at Vanderbilt! A classmate of my husband's from undergrad did their NP program there and was very pleased with it.

    -Jess
    Thanks, Jess, for the empathy. It's very much appreciated. I agree trying to find out how many people are on the waitlist for each track and where I am (they didn't mention which track I was waitlisted for, so I was assuming it was my first choice, ANP, but I should ask) on the list is a good idea.

    It's interesting also to start thinking about cost like you have been so skillfully doing and sharing with all of us, and time. MGH's per unit cost is I think lower than Vanderbilt's, but MGH's program is three years, w/no summer semester. Vanderbilt's runs through the summers and you actually finish in a little over 2 yrs (2 yrs and a summer I think - I have to go back and look) if you go straight through. Also, Nashville's cost of living is practically zippo, it's about $500/mo for an apartment per my research on rent.com, whereas in Boston, well you know, it's double from what I've seen, not to mention what I'm sure are the comparable other cost differences in living. So my CA savings/equity, and any loan money (if I can get alternative loans)would go farther at Vanderbilt.

    On the other hand, if I worked in Boston in the summers, I'd get valuable RN/floor nursing experience and actually make enough money to contribute to tuition. Whereas in Nashville, the salaries are so low that it wouldn't begin to help w/tuition, although it would w/food/rent, etc.

    Then there's the weather, which is much better in Nashville...

    Anyway, alot to think about, but I don't have to make any decisions right away like everyone else does. This is the upside of my situation!

    Thanks again for the concern and for being there/here (in this virtual world of ours)
  6. by   Jess RN
    Quote from CAG12345
    Thanks, Jess, for the empathy. It's very much appreciated. I agree trying to find out how many people are on the waitlist for each track and where I am (they didn't mention which track I was waitlisted for, so I was assuming it was my first choice, ANP, but I should ask) on the list is a good idea.

    It's interesting also to start thinking about cost like you have been so skillfully doing and sharing with all of us, and time. MGH's per unit cost is I think lower than Vanderbilt's, but MGH's program is three years, w/no summer semester. Vanderbilt's runs through the summers and you actually finish in a little over 2 yrs (2 yrs and a summer I think - I have to go back and look) if you go straight through. Also, Nashville's cost of living is practically zippo, it's about $500/mo for an apartment per my research on rent.com, whereas in Boston, well you know, it's double from what I've seen, not to mention what I'm sure are the comparable other cost differences in living. So my CA savings/equity, and any loan money (if I can get alternative loans)would go farther at Vanderbilt.

    On the other hand, if I worked in Boston in the summers, I'd get valuable RN/floor nursing experience and actually make enough money to contribute to tuition. Whereas in Nashville, the salaries are so low that it wouldn't begin to help w/tuition, although it would w/food/rent, etc.

    Then there's the weather, which is much better in Nashville...
    That's great CAG, that you are looking at all the variables involved. When you are going back to school to change careers, there is a significant opportunity cost to doing so. Your time is valuable and longer programs eat into that time and have the downside of lost income. The flip side to that though is that it is much easier to get your first fulltime job as a nurse in the same location you've done your clinicals as a student. SO, if you would want to live in TN for a while after school and work I'd say that's ideal- otherwise I would factor that in as a possible upside to MGH. A friend of mine who is a Physician Assistant moved to Boston right after graduation and it took her the better part of a year to find a job here because she had no network or connections that she would have had back at her school.

    The other possiblity with many of these programs is to complete the RN portion and then find work FT as a staff nurse while taking the advanced practice coursework PT. In that scenario you could get some loan forgiveness from your employer for the loans in the RN portion and possibly also some help paying for the NP part through a continuing education benefit. I did that analysis last night and while MGH would still be significantly more expensive than BC- the month over month cash flow issues are much easier to handle and makes both schools comparable money-wise.

    There are lots of different things to consider! I'm sure you will figure out the right path (Vanderbilt, MGH or a CA school yet to be considered!)

    Take care!

    Jess
    Last edit by Jess RN on Mar 17, '05
  7. by   Jess RN
    Quote from NP-to-be
    Hey Jess - Any more thoughts on if you'll visit BC / MGH. MGH is not being very responsive to my request for a visit ... hmmm.
    Huh. That's dissapointing. I've emailed BC twice with a question about pre requs I'll have to do this summer and no response. What's WITH these schools?! I think they think that they have done their part by holding infosessions!

    -Jess
  8. by   NP-to-be
    Quote from future nurse jess
    Huh. That's dissapointing. I've emailed BC twice with a question about pre requs I'll have to do this summer and no response. What's WITH these schools?! I think they think that they have done their part by holding infosessions!

    -Jess
    I agree. I have been very surprised by the response I have recieved. Someone from MGH finally did get back to me and only provided a list of teachers and their contact info. They suggested that I contact the teachers individually and ask if I could sit in on their class. Not really the response I was hopefully for
  9. by   smile123
    Quote from future nurse jess
    Huh. That's dissapointing. I've emailed BC twice with a question about pre requs I'll have to do this summer and no response. What's WITH these schools?! I think they think that they have done their part by holding infosessions!

    -Jess
    Yes, the schools should have an infosession. Johns Hopkins is having an online moderated chat session today for all their accepted students
    Thursday, March 17th 3pm to 5pm ET (Happy St. Patrick's Day!) I think it will help answer a lot of questions students have.

    http://www.son.jhmi.edu/admissions/adabout.asp

    Smile123
  10. by   Jess RN
    Quote from NP-to-be
    I agree. I have been very surprised by the response I have recieved. Someone from MGH finally did get back to me and only provided a list of teachers and their contact info. They suggested that I contact the teachers individually and ask if I could sit in on their class. Not really the response I was hopefully for

    I think I'll be making my decision based on what I already know of the schools. At this point, I don't think either of the ones I'm considering are going to give the opportunity to get much more info- they'll allow it but won't facilitate it, you know? I don't know if how they treat accepted students is indicative of how students in the program are treated. If you think of it in terms of a heirarchy with professors at the top, phd candidates just below them, current grad students, then accepted grad students are at the bottom.

    -Jess

    PS- Jen what pre reqs do you have left and where are you planning on doing them?
  11. by   smile123
    Quote from future nurse jess
    I think I'll be making my decision based on what I already know of the schools. At this point, I don't think either of the ones I'm considering are going to give the opportunity to get much more info- they'll allow it but won't facilitate it, you know? I don't know if how they treat accepted students is indicative of how students in the program are treated. If you think of it in terms of a heirarchy with professors at the top, phd candidates just below them, current grad students, then accepted grad students are at the bottom.

    -Jess

    PS- Jen what pre reqs do you have left and where are you planning on doing them?
    True. The visits would just be confirmations of your initial impressions. So which way are you guys leaning? I think Jess said she was leaning toward BC for overall costs and time. What about you Jen?

    Smile123
  12. by   Jess RN
    Quote from smile123
    Yes, the schools should have an infosession. Johns Hopkins is having an online moderated chat session today for all their accepted students
    Thursday, March 17th 3pm to 5pm ET (Happy St. Patrick's Day!) I think it will help answer a lot of questions students have.

    http://www.son.jhmi.edu/admissions/adabout.asp

    Smile123
    Wow- that is so cool! I wish my schools did something like that- what a huge help to prospective students!

    -Jess
  13. by   NP-to-be
    Quote from future nurse jess
    I think I'll be making my decision based on what I already know of the schools. At this point, I don't think either of the ones I'm considering are going to give the opportunity to get much more info- they'll allow it but won't facilitate it, you know? I don't know if how they treat accepted students is indicative of how students in the program are treated. If you think of it in terms of a heirarchy with professors at the top, phd candidates just below them, current grad students, then accepted grad students are at the bottom.

    -Jess

    PS- Jen what pre reqs do you have left and where are you planning on doing them?
    Jess - I have A&P I and II as well as org. chem. If I go to Simmons or MGH I will do the summer classes. If BC, I will hopefully continue at Bunker Hill where I have been fairly pleased thus far (and it would be cheaper)! I must say the idea of doing the science summer at Simmons is appealing to me. Classes are taught in a traditional manner (albeit very accelorated) and geared toward the direct-entry student. What about you Jess?

    Smile - I haven't been able to shake my gut feeling that Simmons is the right choice. However, I've been searching for some objective reasons to justify that decision (and saying no to some very reputable schools). So far this is what I have: 1.) Simmons requires a 9-month RN internship, 2.) All Simmons faculty are required to actively practice and 3.) they seem to be very clinically focused as opposed to research focused which is important to me. Very tough decision

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