Getting around the 18 y.o requirement - page 5

My 14 y.o daughter has 21 college credits and is currently enrolled full time in a community college. She would very much like to be a nurse but does not want to start an Associates degree in nursing... Read More

  1. by   FolksBtrippin
    What we are missing when we send 14 year olds to college is context.

    Even if a 14 year old is smart enough, mature enough, etc, the context of college is wrong for a 14 year old.

    Yes, it is!

    Do you want your 14 year old to participate in life as an 18 to 22 year old? Make her own decisions about every single thing, date 18 to 22 year olds, go to parties with 18 to 22 year olds, etc.

    I think you don't.

    Context is everything. This is still a 14 year old child. Who is about to spend the next four years (or however many years) of her life as an odd, not fully able to participate, half-citizen of her social world.

    It isn't worth any benefit to do this.
  2. by   LessValuableNinja
    Quote from Meriwhen
    Forgot to explain that an accelerated BSN program is for students who already have a bachelors--since all the pre-req courses for a bachelors are already done, it focuses more on the nursing courses. However, most accelerated BSN programs still require at least 2 years.
    Mine was 11 months (ABSN). It wasn't a lot of fun to do it that fast.
  3. by   Glycerine82
    Quote from Emergent
    I don't know about you, but age 14 for me was a confusing and stressful time of my life. I wonder how anyone can think that the teenage years are stress-free.
    Carefree isn't the same as stress free.
  4. by   Meriwhen
    Quote from nicktexas
    Mine was 11 months (ABSN). It wasn't a lot of fun to do it that fast.
    That was mostly a guess on my part. I went the BA/ADN/BSN route myself. Took a LOT longer than 11 months
  5. by   LessValuableNinja
    Quote from Meriwhen
    That was mostly a guess on my part. I went the BA/ADN/BSN route myself. Took a LOT longer than 11 months
    I didn't take the shortest path either. Went the Army schools / BS / MS / ABSN route. Been in college in some fashion or another since 17. I still claim to be 25, but am fairly certain people have figured out I am lying by now. About to start an MS, again, but this time in nursing.

    To the OP: Keep in mind that many, many nursing schools require prerequisites before even applying to the nursing program. For example, one of the large and well-regarded public universities in my area requires pre-requisites that take most full-time students 2.5-3 years to complete before applying. The going length of time before applying in most cases seems to be about 2 years (assuming you are a diligent student, and get/take successfully the courses you need at 15 credits per semester, if not studying through the summer). Unless your daughter is taking 15 credits of college-level coursework a semester, it could very well take her until 17 (or later) to have the necessary prerequisites to apply, and she could be 18 (or 17 - I agree with what others have said: Talk to the schools in your area about your/her desires) when she starts, and done at 20. Also understand that while it is possible to finish a BSN in 4 years of full-time study, 4 years is not the mean or median time to do so. If you do a survey of even traditional students with the question: How long did it take you to finish your BSN?, you'll find that many nurses, even in school full-time in a traditional program, took 5+ years to complete a BSN. Of course, you'll find those that did it in 3, but most of them were trying VERY, VERY hard to do so and were either lucky to be in a situation where the stars aligned (available classes/agreeable program/resources/time/brains/etc), or also worked very hard to make the stars align (researched schools heavily, made resources happen, planned scheduling very early on, lobbied hard to make classes happen at the right time, etc).

    Best wishes, good luck, and like others have suggested: Talk to schools in your area about options. Someone who is able to start the nursing program at exactly 18 or younger and graduate at 18-20 as a BSN, RN, is a great news story / free advertising for the school / feelgood oped for all. Some schools may recognize your daughter as an opportunity not only to help / gain a gifted student / future nurse leader / future innovator / future distinguished graduate / future faculty, but also to help create a narrative that shows the school in a positive light. If they do, they may be especially helpful in helping her realize her dreams. While it may or may not be at 18 like you're hoping, a school that wants to foster her as a future graduate from their nursing program will likely go out of their way to help you look at options.

    Bedpan-6 out.
  6. by   saskrn
    Quote from MHDNURSE
    I am guessing maybe she is home schooled? She can start by getting some actual hospital experience by volunteering as a candy striper, make sure she likes being in a hospital. Part of the reason there is an age requirement, apart from liability, is because intellectually, one needs to be able to make critical decisions, think abstractly and outside of the box, many times in an instant. Developmentally, these skills don't usually manifest until AT LEAST 18, and usually more like 21. I would encourage her to continue to pursue college level science courses, throw in a statistics course for good measure, volunteer in a hospital or LTC facility, and be patient. Once she is 18, she can hopefully apply all her college level courses to get the cores out of the way, do some electives she finds interesting, and start her clinicals.

    Great response!
  7. by   NotYourMamasRN
    Hi OP,

    Congrats on having a bright and gifted young lady, that is very impressive. I definitely think that doing a BS in the sciences is the best option, let her volunteer and get some real world experience, and then make a decision whether or not the profession is actually for her. When I was 14 I wanted to be a Navy Seal, when I was 19 I wanted to be a pilot, when I was in my mid 20's I got the idea I liked nursing, and now in my mid 30's I want to weave baskets in Costa Rica. My point being, this is not a profession one should jump into until they know it is truly what they want to do and it takes some degree of maturity to make such a big decision. Too many people get pigeon holed in nursing and there is no crappier a feeling than being stuck, burnout, and up to your ears in student loans with a degree you would rather flush down the toilet.
  8. by   BiaRN2OT
    Quote from lnvitale
    What we are missing when we send 14 year olds to college is context.


    Even if a 14 year old is smart enough, mature enough, etc, the context of college is wrong for a 14 year old.


    Yes, it is!


    Do you want your 14 year old to participate in life as an 18 to 22 year old? Make her own decisions about every single thing, date 18 to 22 year olds, go to parties with 18 to 22 year olds, etc.


    I think you don't.


    Context is everything. This is still a 14 year old child. Who is about to spend the next four years (or however many years) of her life as an odd, not fully able to participate, half-citizen of her social world.


    It isn't worth any benefit to do this.

    I thought I was the only one thinking in this context. I've heard of children who attend college early. I've seen a Doogie Howser episode. Just thinking of the world we live in, I might give my right cheek to go back and have those 4 years of 'freedom' before having adult responsibilities. Dealing with violent patients, having someone's life in your hands, the vulgar things that patients can do/say to hospital staff. This may just be me...but I don't want my 14, 15, 16-year old daughter doing perineum care on strange grown men. I don't care how mature she is.
  9. by   LovingLife123
    I'm sure there is a lot the OP hasn't thought about here and even though they haven't responded, I hope you are still reading as I think you may have read some things you may not have thought have.

    I would never want my young daughter to shoulder the responsibilities of being a nurse. At the ripe old age of sixteen, a girl should be going on her first date, experiencing first kisses........... not worried that she could be assaulted, screamed at, and degraded by pt and their families. She won't be emotionally ready to deal with the senseless tragedy we see on a daily basis. I won't ev n begin to describe what I saw the other night, but I had no idea one human could be so horrible to another human. No young girl should ever see that.

    Trying to deal emotionally with the things we see takes a lot of emotional maturity. And while I'm sure your daughter is smart and has a good head on her shoulders, the fact of the matter is she is 14. Her brain will not be fully formed and fully working for a long time. You can't push brain growth. She will burn out if the job quickly and will be at risk for depression. There are days I can't deal with what I see. Many of my drives home are filled with good cries to help deal with it all.

    While I would never have my 14 year old enrolled in college, she is your child, not ours. But please rethink pushing her into such a highly complex field at such a young age. Some programs won't allow adults until they turn 21 into nursing. Much of it has to do with the logistics of liability insurance. I know I'm my program, certain facilities would not allow anybody under 21 to do clinicals.

    Good luck and I hope we have given you some food for thought.
  10. by   AliNajaCat
    Not an attorney and don't play one on the net. However, my very first thought was that unless she's an emancipated minor (a particular legal status, for which in many states you have to be at least sixteen) she may not be able to enter into the contracted legal status encompassing a student nurse's responsibilities.* An argument could be made that if, say, she made a medication error she could not be held accountable because of her lack of majority-- and we can't really have that, now, can we? We need to have students with attitudinal, parental opinion, AND legal ability to undertake the role.



    * and no, students do not "practice under their instructors' licenses" - they are legally responsible for adhering to the scope and standards of their student status as defined by their schools and the affiliated clinical placement venues)
  11. by   /username
    Quote from AliNajaCat

    * and no, students do not "practice under their instructors' licenses" - they are legally responsible for adhering to the scope and standards of their student status as defined by their schools and the affiliated clinical placement venues)

    Thank you! Nobody practices "under anyone else's license" ever for any reason.
  12. by   mercurysmom
    Quote from Asystole RN
    I know a nurse who was licensed at 18, as in she graduated BEFORE she turned 18.
    This was me. I entered a hospital-based LPN program at 16 and proceeded to have the stuffing knocked out of me. I grew up...FAST. I graduated at 17 and sat for my boards the day after my 18th birthday. If my birthday had been even a day later, I would've been forced to wait the 4 or 6 months until state boards were held again. Yes, this was in the 80's, which makes me a COB.

    My first job was on a Med-Surg floor of the hospital that offered the LPN program. I wanted to work 3rd shift as a GPN, but couldn't, as I needed a work permit. Yes, I was embarrassed.

    I went right into an ADN program immediately after I finished the LPN program in July. My birthday is at the end of September, which means I was 17 for the first few weeks of the ADN program. I vaguely remember discussing it with my first CI, and I think I was able to start clinicals because I had already graduated from the PN program. If I hadn't passed my boards on the first try, however, I think I would've been jettisoned from the ADN program pretty quickly.

    If I had the opportunity to start over, I probably would have taken more courses at a community college, perhaps studied abroad for a semester, or any one of the exciting things that I could have done in those "pre-mortgage/relationship/marriage/kids/life/etc" years. I don't regret going into Nursing, but I do wish that I hadn't been so gosh darned impatient.

    My son is in a similar situation, as he participated in a dual enrollment program at the community college where I currently teach. Starting in his sophomore year in HS, he took college level courses and received both HS and college credits. He graduated from HS in June 2016, and had enough college credits to transfer to an Engineering program...if he wanted. Instead, we've encouraged him to take courses that "sounded neat" as well as pursuing anything that he had ever thought to himself, "I wonder what it would be like to..." He took an introductory piano class...and quickly learned that he's better suited as a music aficionado rather than a musician. He took an ASL class and earned himself a "therapeutic F" by ignoring the syllabus, and replaced the F with an A by repeating the course (paid 100% out of his own pocket, too.) This semester, he's taking a heavy math and science course load, as well as a fencing class. I'm doing my best to encourage him, but inwardly cringing as well. All of these experiences are helping him develop skills and insight that are setting him up to be a much more successful, well-rounded Engineering student.

    I understand your daughter's desire to forge ahead and finish college as quickly as possible. I felt the same way. However, she has opportunities available to her that are quite unique, given her age. My suggestion would be to choose some situations she had never imagined experiencing...and experience them. She has the time to take classes for the sake of satisfying her curiosity, trying something entirely new, without worrying about completing a degree on a strict timeline. (I agree, however, that she needs to be aware of any financial aid limits, and consider taking courses through a community college or utilizing private scholarships.)

    Good luck to her!

    Mercury's Mom
  13. by   Libby1987
    As a mom I'm trying to think if I would ever encourage my kid to go to nursing school in today's healthcare regardless of intellect, but a kid like OP's? Nursing school?

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