If you are or were a single mother of 2, which program would you choose?

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    I'm applying to several programs that (accelerated BSN) let you take the nursing courses online and then report to clinicals 2-3 times a week, there is even a couple of weekend programs I am looking into.

    I have 2 kids, one will be in the 1st grade by the time I begin school and the other in PK4. I am a single mom. I receive no help from their father. Our divorce should be final soon...

    I have saved up some money in order to relocate if I get into one of the programs.

    My parents would like for me to stay near where they are and go to school somewhere in California. But it is really tough getting into the state nursing schools and some have closed admissions to people who already have a bachelor's degree.

    I don't want to apply to a private university here in California because the programs are so expensive. They range from $36,000 to $60,000+. PLUS I have to consider living expenses. And no, I do not want my parents to watch my children while I am in school because my father is not a good influence and my parents do not share the same beliefs as I do, especially when it comes to sociocultural and religious issues.

    The one program I really am considering and have been admitted to the school, but not the nursing program yet is UT-Arlington's accelerated Academic Partnership program. It's a 15 month program that costs $16,000. I am aware I will have to request private loans to cover living expenses and daycare. But when I am accepted (like to be positive) into this program, the only times I need cover for watching my children are during the clinicals. I've heard they are held 2x a week.

    The other programs which are also accelerated are more traditional as far as classroom and clinical hours go. But my kids may have to definitely stay in an after school program and possibly daycare during the weekends if I have clinicals.

    Which would you choose if you were in my position?
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  3. 11 Comments so far...

  4. 2
    Have you ever read "The grapes of Wrath" by John Steinbeck? I would be careful relocating out of state, in state you can be assured of public assistance if things go bad.
    Nursing is a saturated market right now, if you love it and dream of it, then go for it, but right now (not forever), the jobs are few and far between. Good luck, I was a single mom in nursing school, I made it, you can too. Good luck.
    K nurse-one-day and lkwashington like this.
  5. 0
    Quote from nvsmom
    I'm applying to several programs that (accelerated BSN) let you take the nursing courses online and then report to clinicals 2-3 times a week, there is even a couple of weekend programs I am looking into.

    I have 2 kids, one will be in the 1st grade by the time I begin school and the other in PK4. I am a single mom. I receive no help from their father. Our divorce should be final soon...

    I have saved up some money in order to relocate if I get into one of the programs.

    My parents would like for me to stay near where they are and go to school somewhere in California. But it is really tough getting into the state nursing schools and some have closed admissions to people who already have a bachelor's degree.

    I don't want to apply to a private university here in California because the programs are so expensive. They range from $36,000 to $60,000+. PLUS I have to consider living expenses. And no, I do not want my parents to watch my children while I am in school because my father is not a good influence and my parents do not share the same beliefs as I do, especially when it comes to sociocultural and religious issues.

    The one program I really am considering and have been admitted to the school, but not the nursing program yet is UT-Arlington's accelerated Academic Partnership program. It's a 15 month program that costs $16,000. I am aware I will have to request private loans to cover living expenses and daycare. But when I am accepted (like to be positive) into this program, the only times I need cover for watching my children are during the clinicals. I've heard they are held 2x a week.

    The other programs which are also accelerated are more traditional as far as classroom and clinical hours go. But my kids may have to definitely stay in an after school program and possibly daycare during the weekends if I have clinicals.

    Which would you choose if you were in my position?
    I attended a two year community college program, while working full time as a LPN. My program was fully accredited and had a 98% passing rate on state boards. I went for my BSN two years later, again while working full time. I tend to view the accelerated programs with a jaundice eye. Most are connected to forprofitprograms. And tend to have high failure rates. I am aware of the problems with California programs but their success rates are higher. Any way you do it,you are going to go into debt. And if you do not complete the program are still responsible for the debt, that cannot be discharged thru bankruptcy. Sorry I can't offer more positive information.
  6. 0
    Quote from LTC RN jc
    Have you ever read "The grapes of Wrath" by John Steinbeck? I would be careful relocating out of state, in state you can be assured of public assistance if things go bad.
    Nursing is a saturated market right now, if you love it and dream of it, then go for it, but right now (not forever), the jobs are few and far between. Good luck, I was a single mom in nursing school, I made it, you can too. Good luck.
    I'm not geographically tied to any region and have no problem relocating. I think this pertains to people who are really adamant about staying in a certain city or state.

    In California, there are still some people who you would think of as being eligible for state aid, but end up not being qualified. I was only on public assistance for 1 year, right after I had my daughter. I haven't been on it since 2008. While I know the help is there, I don't feel like I should depend on public assistance as an only source.

    I know I can make it, just like you have...I am just concerned with who will watch my children when I am in nursing school.
  7. 2
    I am a full time single parent of 2 boys and I just graduated from NS. However I had a lot of help from my mom. Those clinical start times can be brutal, getting up at 4am to make it to a 6am clinical.
    I would pick the program that allows you the most time at home, if your kids allow you to study.
    My program was not accelerated ADN, and it was hard trying to make a balance between school and my kids. Essentially school owns you and if you are in an accelerated program, it is just going to be that much harder.
    As far as daycare, have you looked into pricing nannies vs facilities because you will have odd hours that you need someone to watch your kids.
    I lived next door to my mom, which made a huge diffrence, or if your university has an child development program/early education see if anyone is looking for some extra work
    lkwashington and Lillian2515 like this.
  8. 1
    Quote from LTC RN jc
    Have you ever read "The grapes of Wrath" by John Steinbeck? I would be careful relocating out of state, in state you can be assured of public assistance if things go bad.
    Nursing is a saturated market right now, if you love it and dream of it, then go for it, but right now (not forever), the jobs are few and far between. Good luck, I was a single mom in nursing school, I made it, you can too. Good luck.
    The OP may have to pay out of state tuition. We all know this can be alot of money.
    pedsrnjc likes this.
  9. 1
    I am married with one 3 year old who goes to a center daycare during the day and I worked out a deal with my neighbor to pick her up after daycare if I can't make it there by 4:30 when they close. I have been working on my pre-req's for the last year now and will start nursing next fall. Maybe you could trade baby-sitting with another mom who needs help. There are lots of them out there. good luck to you! You can do it!
    lkwashington likes this.
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    UT is an awesome school. I'm sure they have on site daycare. Also, there are in home childcare centers that are available on weekends. You can check them out at the Texas Department of Family Services.

    If you don't want to stay near your parents to get their help, then I think going someplace where the cost of living isn't so outrageous (including childcare cost) isn't a bad idea at all. Good Luck!
  11. 1
    I just graduated from an accelerated AAS program in KS about 1-1/2 wks ago. I take the RN boards this Wed. I tested out of a few classes b/c I had a BA already in something else. During school, I filed for divorce, lost my house to foreclosure and moved (within the same small town), and got my divorce finalized. My kids were 7, 5 and 3 when I started school almost 2 years ago. If I can do it, anybody can. It was hard, and my kids had to be watched my a handful of different people, mostly during clinicals, and some afternoons after they got out of school while I still had class. In the mornings, my babysitter (a high school student) came over at 5:15 a.m. so I could leave for clinicals, and she dropped my 3 kids off at the daycare at 6 a.m. My 2 oldest were able to ride the bus from daycare to elementary school and back when they needed to. (My 4 yr old son's daycare has a before/after school program for the older kids, luckily). I also had 2 women who worked at the daycare itself who babysat for me sometimes when the daycare would close at 6pm and I wouldn't get home til 7:30 - 8:00 p.m. I had about 3-4 people I really trusted (my mom lived too far to be able to watch my kids). I had clinicals 8 hours, 3 days a week, except for my Critical Care rotation, which was 12 hours for 2 days a week. No weekends.

    It was really hard and stressful, but my kids were with people they loved and trusted (and I trusted), and we got through it. I personally would do everything I could not to relocate my kids, especially since their parents just got divorced. That and having their mom in school so much would be hard enough on them, IMO. My kids were able to stay at the same school and daycare throughout the transition of my divorce and college. It was rough sometimes (ok, a LOT of times), but we got through it. They are so much more settled now that I'm done w/school. I figured I could struggle for a couple of years and go to school, or struggle for the rest of my life. That made the choice a lot easier.

    Good luck, I hope this helps, even though I can't tell you how to do it, I can tell you that you CAN do this!
    lkwashington likes this.
  12. 0
    Wow, I love your story..yes I know it will be a challenge. Well I am willing to relocate where I will receive the best financial aid and be able to live in a city that has a low cost of living. Their father hasn't seen them for more than 3 years so I don't think it makes a difference whether we stay or go. He's been living in a different state. I know in the event I do go somewhere out of state, I will have to find people who I can trust to watch my kids and come up with the money to pay for their service. I have about 10 months to save more money before a lot of the programs I applied to will begin.


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