A year between pre-reqs and nursing school?

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    I've recently decided that I'd like to pursue nursing. I already have my English pre-requisites completed, but I still need stats, lifespan psych, chemistry, microbiology (and biology because it's a pre-req for micro), anatomy and physiology 1 & 2, and the NAC class. It will take me until spring or summer 2014 to complete those classes, since some are pre-reqs for others and I also don't want to overload myself with too many hard classes in one quarter.
    All nursing programs in the area require students to have completed their pre-reqs by the end of the winter quarter prior to the fall-- the application deadline is April, all pre-reqs have to be completed by then. This means I would have to wait a full year after completing my pre-reqs to begin nursing school.
    Has anyone on here had to wait a year between finishing pre-reqs and beginning their nursing program?
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    yes. that's why i double majored
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    jennafezz-- what did you get your other major in, was it done at a community college, and what was your degree plan like? I actually found out another school does spring and winter admission, so I may be able to only need to take 3-6 months off.
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    Yes, not only that... some schools have 2-years of waiting time!

    That is the main reason I went with a private school, so I would not have to wait between my pre-reqs and core classes. I paid a ton of money per credit, but it is putting me in the working field about 3 years early (when compared to a community college wait in Central Florida).

    One thing you can do while waiting is to get your CNA certification at a vocational school and start working as a nurse assistant. This will give you some experience and you will practice all the basics before you start your nursing clinicals.

    Best wishes, do not give up!
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    I fully rely on FAFSA and scholarships to pay my tuiton, so I think a private university is out of the question for me, but that's a great suggestion. Sounded like it worked out really well for you.

    I actually have 6+ years working as a caregiver. I took the NAC class in 2006 but was unable to complete all my clinical hours because they conflicted with my job at the nursing home (I was working a lot of crazy doubles.) I have my NAR as well as my fundamentals of care because I do mainly assisted/retirement facilities or in home care, so I haven't needed my NAC. I will be getting my NAC over the summer through my college, though!

    Would it be wise for me to begin studying with an NCLEX book sooner rather than later?
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    Quote from emyaj
    I fully rely on FAFSA and scholarships to pay my tuiton, so I think a private university is out of the question for me, but that's a great suggestion. Sounded like it worked out really well for you.

    I actually have 6+ years working as a caregiver. I took the NAC class in 2006 but was unable to complete all my clinical hours because they conflicted with my job at the nursing home (I was working a lot of crazy doubles.) I have my NAR as well as my fundamentals of care because I do mainly assisted/retirement facilities or in home care, so I haven't needed my NAC. I will be getting my NAC over the summer through my college, though!

    Would it be wise for me to begin studying with an NCLEX book sooner rather than later?
    I hear you about the tuition costs and FAFSA! The reason I went for the private school is also due to my age... I'm 43, changing careers, lost my accounting job in 2009... so I wanted/needed to transition as soon as possible. I now have $30K worth of student loans (even after Pell Grant), but that is my situation. I would have stayed cleared from loans if I had the time to wait.

    Would it be wise for you to study from an NCLEX book now? I think it's a bit too early for that because in order to learn how to think critically, you need to have the knowledge. I would suggest that you first concentrate on the TEAS test, then move on to Fundamentals of Nursing and Health Assessment (typically the first two subjects taught in nursing core classes ~ though some schools teach them prior to nursing school).

    I think the "Reviews and Rationales" series from Mary Ann Hogan are the bomb! The series of books are available by topic and a catch-all NCLEX-RN book. They all come with clear and concise concepts, NCLEX styles questions and CD for more practice.

    If you are into audio, try getting the Hurst review. This lady has a strong southern accent, she is hilarious and very savvy !!

    Also... Kaplan's "The RN Course Book" is pretty good as well. It is meant for students who are taking their classes at Kaplan University, but you can find cheap older versions in Amazon. They all have the same info with a few small changes. Good review for diseases and medications.

    Best wishes !!!!
    Last edit by Devon Rex on Mar 14, '13
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    Ive had to take out a little in loans already, but am trying to save taking out the big money for once I get into nursing school and will need to be able to not work.. So the lesser the tuition, the better. From what I've researched so far, there really aren't any private universities here in WA that are any less competitive for admission to their nursing programs, plus I would have to move.

    I will look into getting those books, those are some great recommendations that I'll keep in mind. I'm totally not an audio learner, though I'm tempted to get the Hurst review just for the strong southern accent experience lol.
    Devon Rex likes this.
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    Yes I did and I'm sooo happy it ended up that way because it allowed me to take other extremely helpful courses like medical terminology, public health, and medical law and ethics. In my nursing program, they also let you take a few nursing courses that are IN the program to be completed while you do your pre-reqs so you are not over burdened when you are fully accepted in the nursing program. Now, all I have are two classes per semester along with a clinical and I love it because all I study for are classes that actually matter and are of actual use; none of those classes that just waste your time.
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    It wasn't quite a year for me, but almost. I applied for a fall start while finishing the last of my prereqs in the spring (my school doesn't require all prereqs to be completed, just most--you can still have up to I think 18 hours still unfinished at the time of application as long as they are complete before orientation), but was rejected. So I waited and reapplied for the spring start semester and was accepted, which meant I was out 8 months between prereqs and the start of nursing school. I'm actually glad it worked out that way, because it gave me time to work and save money, as well as to mentally prepare myself for the demands that I knew would be placed on me by nursing school. I used that time to do the things I knew I wouldn't have time to once classes started, like travelling to visit family I hadn't seen in awhile, reading all the non-school related books I could get my hands on, as well as to get to know some nursing students who were currently in the program to get a better feel of what I had in store for me. As it got closer and I knew which textbooks we were going to be using, I purchased them ahead of time and started reading to give me a jump on classes, established and organized my study space, got to know the area the school was in very well, etc. All in all, I don't think a long(ish) period between prereqs and nursing school is a bad thing at all, provided you use the time wisely.
  12. 0
    Shoot, I waited for two years...

    It worked out in the end for me because I was able to land an orderly type job at a hospital while I waited; which in the long run enabled me to easily get a job once I passed the boards.


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