Quote from esca0417
But, I'm not terribly interested in working in a hospital and we live in a rural area.
I would like to with work in a physician's office, or in a health department, or in a school... maybe someday working towards a higher degree or maybe getting into hospital work as my kids get older.
So, are things really so bleak for someone like me? If I got my LPN or RN (I'm leaning more to the latter) would it really be such a fight to find a job? I see a lot of advertisements in our town for LPN positions at nursing homes, but is that my only real option?
Thanks for reading and any advice.
As Don said, medical offices have little need for RNs; there are a few more LPNs in that setting. However, for the same reasons YOU want to work there, so do many very qualified and experienced nurses. A medical office cannot be your starting hope, it's unlikely to pan out (or, it'd be a fluke rather than a certainty).
Health Department? If you mean public health nurse, that's for BSN RNs and comes with experience (nearly always) required. And as for the school nurse job?.....nope. BSN as well, typically, and absolutely they want experience....and the fact is, TONS and TONS of nurses who are also parents want these gigs, too, so you'd have to expect to spend some years earning the credentials to be considered for application.
The reason you see lots of advertisements for LPNs in LTC is because....yes....that's your most likely option. If you become an LPN, hospital positions are either nonexistent or extremely limited, and you can completely forget school nursing and public health nursing.
One other thought: getting into hospital employment isn't something you do "down the road". The skills needed in acute care are best used fresh out of nursing school.....before time has robbed you of the ability and being "out of the loop" in terms of technique and latest practice info. The time to learn skills needed IN the hospital is early on, not something you do after years in a non-acute setting. At least, it shouldn't be your plan; it isn't a sound one.
It will take you several years to become an RN, and perhaps by then the job market will have turned around a bit. You can't plan on that, however, and must plan to work hospital shifts when they need you, usually the night shift or off-shifts for newbies. You'll be competing against other new grads who won't have any issues with families, so you have to be flexible to be competitive.
Good luck in your choices.