I had a few questions about working while in school to become a nurse. Just a little back story; I'm a 25yr old male, finishing my pre-reqs online this summer, probably starting nursing school at Miami-Dade College January 2013. I'm currently employed in retail, part-time, and have been successful so far juggling work and classes. Questions are as follows...
1) Once I begin actual nursing school, would maintaining the part-time job (20-25hrs/week) be feasible
2) Would leaving the retail job for something more medically oriented be beneficial for resume/experience purposes?
I'd appreciate any input I could get. Thank you!
May 3, '12
I'm interested in hearing input on your questions as well. I'm also going to be starting the nursing program soon, and I'm trying to figure out how I will balance work and nursing school. My advisor told me to just quit my job, but I don't think he realizes that if I don't work, my bills won't get paid. And I really don't want to take out a loan to pay bills when I can work and pay them without interest.
May 3, '12
1) Well I am a college student and not yet a nursing student, but I would say 20-25 hours is challenging. My counselor told me if I was a full time student ( which is 12 units) 10 hours of work at the most. I had 22 hours of work sometimes everyweek and it was hard (quit though). I would be tired sometimes because I came back at midnight and how was I supposed to study or do homework while I'm dead tired? I missed morning classes though, but I wasn't unprepared or anything. I still maintained a 3.4 GPA for that semester, its possible to do well; just know what classes you CAN miss and what not to. But for nursing I would not suggest it; learn how to.
2. Yes of course; volunteering.
May 3, '12
I'm in Illinois and this is what my counselor told me:
He suggested I do not work at all while in nursing school, But if that I wanted to, it would be a maximum of 24 hrs. He also made me aware that my life would change completely while in nursing school, I would see my relatives less, My husband will have to prepare himself to see me less, and that having fun consisted of clinicals and weekly tests. I really really want to work while in nursing school, but my counselor kind of scared me and told me how extremely hard and competetive it would get while in there, so I'm not sure what I'm gonna do either.... Nursing school is my priority so if I see it is, like he says it is, then I will not work. Gonna see how it goes first... I have talked to nursing students and some do work their maximum 24 hrs, They say it's very hard, but doable
May 3, '12
At my college it is the equivalent of 16 hours even though it is only 8 hours classroom and 8 hours clinicals a week. I haven't officially started so I don't know how the clinicals work. Maybe there is testing on that or it is just practice? I will figure all that out I guess. Assuming its like 16 hours they say you should count on 3 times that in studying, but I do around 1-2 times that and do just fine with my other classes. I plan on working 1-3 days a week at the most. I will adjust depending on the difficulty.
May 3, '12
I'm in the same boat. I will be starting in Jan 2013 with nursing classes. My school advised me not to work but I will be working 20 hrs and if I'm still at my job (banking) I will also volunteer at a hospital for my resume.
May 6, '12
To truckinusa... you'll NEED to study 3 times the number of class hours you have in nursing school. Just an FYI.
Last edit by sandanrnstudent on May 6, '12
: Reason: rewording
May 6, '12
You do what you have to do. I worked 3 part-time jobs while in nursing school plus had a husband and 3 children. I managed just fine. Somethings took a back seat, the house wasn't as clean and dinners were very simple some nights but we survived and yes, I finished nursing school in 2009. Never failed a class and passes NCLEX on the first try. If you DON'T have to work, don't but if you do, it can be done
I had many many late nights while in nursing school.
As far as which job you hold, some hospitals look for previous tech work while others don't care. Your tech or CNA experience will not be counted as "nursing" experience. With that said, it is a great way to network and meet hiring managers. Clinicals is also a great way to network.
May 6, '12
I graduated 3 years ago. I worked part-time in an assisted living facility while in school. I wish I would have gotten a job in a hospital as an aide while in school. I think it would really help prepare you. I would go for a job as an aide or clerk in the area you want to work in as a nurse. In my unit a couple of our aides are in nursing school right now and they have a bunch of nurses around to ask question and show them procedures we are doing so they get so much more experience than most students. you would also have an in when you graduate.
May 6, '12
I work per diem as an ER Tech and I'll be starting a BSN program in the Fall. I plan to work at least 2 days a week (24 hours) for the first few semesters and possibly cut it down to once a week during the summer portions of my program and once the course load increases the last year. Luckily, I am graduating with a Bachelor's in another field and have all of my general education requirements taken care of so I can just focus on the nursing classes. My coworkers keep saying that I'll be fine and nursing school will be a lot easier for me because of my experience and I hope that's true but I won't be counting on it.
May 8, '12
I worked full-time (about 45-50 hours a week) all through my BSN degree which was also full-time (I think I had around 12 credits per semester if I remember correctly. My program held classes after "normal" working hours for career changers, five nights a week and alternate Saturdays.
That being said, I was positively exhausted when it was all over - I took several months after passing my boards before I began looking for a nursing job (as I was still employed at my job). I really wouldn't recommend trying to hold down more than part-time during full-time school.
May 13, '12
Thats my dilema right now too, Im currently working full time, and trying to change my situation for this fall so that I can focus completley on nursing school and not work. Its going to be stressfull to see my debt pile up in loans though.
Jun 11, '13
Hello all! I am starting my senior year this coming semester. I really think it depends on your personality and your determination. If you want to become a nurse, or anything for that matter, NOTHING will stop you. I left home at an early age and always worked full time and went to school. I had no choice, there was no one to pay my rent, car payment, and other bills but me. I work full time in veterinary medicine and go to school full time as well and still manage A's and B's. I am not going to tell you it has been easy, it hasn't. I had to move in with a friend, I had to sell pretty much everything I own, give up sleep, but it I can finally see the finish line!! I am glad I have had to do things this way, because once it is over and I no longer have to count pennys I know that I will appreciate it even more. Good luck to you, if I can do it anyone can!
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