Too old to become a nurse? Need opinions

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    I am 44 yrs old. I will be homeschooling my daughter until I'm 48 yrs old. In order to start earning money at home, I'm considering doing medical transcription. But long term I want something more and have been interested in nursing for sometime. Do you think I'm too old to consider entering into a nursing career? I'd prolly start school so I could start job hunting the summer before I turn 49. Am I nuts?!

    If I weren't going into nursing later, I'd prolly try to continue my school in med. office admin. or healthcare mgt. I'd prolly be good at those, but I enjoy taking care of other people and I think I would enjoy being a ob/gyn or pediatric nurse.

    I don't want to sell myself or my potential short by giving up on the idea but yet I don't want to be thinking something that crazy to consider lol. I also have to carefully plan this because of past school loans I've got from about 3 yrs of undergrad in liberal arts, business, and Biblical studies.
  2. 30 Comments so far...

  3. 1
    Well, I went back to school at 52 so no, you aren't too old.

    Frankly, though, I'd use those credits to bridge to a degree in health information management and stay at a desk job. I love taking care of people, too, but nursing is back-breaking at my age.
    llg likes this.
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    Hi! No, you're not too old...I have just been accepted into a program here in Vermont and I am turning 43...go for it!
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    Quote from SuesquatchRN
    Well, I went back to school at 52 so no, you aren't too old.

    Frankly, though, I'd use those credits to bridge to a degree in health information management and stay at a desk job. I love taking care of people, too, but nursing is back-breaking at my age.
    I totally agree with Suesquatch. Yes, you can become a nurse at your age. Yes, you can be successful. However, nursing can be very hard on the body -- particularly the types of staff nurse jobs that new grads are most likely to get at the beginning of their careers. I have known a lot of "older" new grads who under-estimate the difficulties of working night shifts, rotating shifts, being on their feet for 12 hours, etc. and have serious doubts about their choice to begin nursing once they are actually out of school and working as a nurse. Some also find that they are not as willing to work weekends and holidays as they had thought they would be.

    I would recommend "giving it a try" before making a huge investment of time and money in a nursing education. Become a nursing assistant as you complete any pre-req's or even sooner. A CNA (certified nursing assistant) course will not be a huge investment -- but it will give you the opportunity to get a job in a hospital or long term care facility caring for patients. Be sure that you work some night shifts, weekends, and holidays. Then, if you find that you like that sort of work and your body can tolerate working those hours, you will know that you can physically handle a staff nurse job. But don't wait until after you graduate as a nurse to find out that you can't stand to work that sort of a schedule or do that kind of work.

    Good luck to you -- with whatever you decide.
    SuesquatchRN and traumaRUs like this.
  6. 0
    You will find a ton of threads that ask this very same question.

    I am 46 and will be 48 when I graduate.

    You can do this.
  7. 1
    Thanks for all your thoughts and advice. Yes the physical part was part of my wondering. I will definitely keep all this in mind while making my decision for my future. :heartbeat
    SuesquatchRN likes this.
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    My dad retired after 22 years in the Marines and promptly went to Nursing school. It's hard on him (several 12hour night shifts a week) but, he wouldn't trade it for the world. And a good friend of mine who is taking the same pre-reqs with me is in her mid 40s, has several young children, and her husband is in grad-school, but she seems to be keeping up pretty well. Your call
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    I went back to school at 56, following 35 years in a non-health related career. My second stint in college has been demanding, but I think age brings with it a few assets. For instance, I have much better study skills, an improved work ethic, and a far stronger sense of self-discipline now than when I was in college the first time. I'm focussed on the classwork, rather than beer and women.

    Obviously, I don't think you're too old to go after a nursing degree.

    By the way, I recently heard about a 65-year-old woman who graduated number one in her nursing class. It makes even a fossil like me feel like a pup.
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    :yeahthat:
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    Thank you for the replies. I will stop fussing over my age now! LOL I'm going to take the plunge and do the medical transcription. It will be an income at home for me while I'm homeschooling and starting my prerequisite classes. Plus it will help me break into healthcare.


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