Psychiatric technician to Nurse?

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    sorry if this is off subject,im very interested in psychiatric nursing i live in northern ca and am considering becoming a psych tech to get a feel for the job its a short program here like 3 semesters and i hope will help me make the choice as to if nursing in a psychiatric area is for me my question is there good job opportunitys for psych techs? also when i decide would the psych tech schooling reduce the amount of classes i have to take to become an rn? any information would be greatly appreciated thanks.
  2. 9 Comments so far...

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    Unless you are a Paramedic or LPN I don't think you can shorten nursing school. What type of training course are you completing? I'm a nursing student working as a psychiatric tech at an inpatient psych hospital and I didn't have to do any special training - they just requried at least an associates degree in psychology (I have my BA). I don't think much different than a PCA does. The biggest differnces are that we don't do vitals as often, almost everyone is up ad lib, and I hold a lot of groups and do a lot of talking with patients!
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    Community college psychiatric technitian certificate cours its three semesters and the bvntp i believe is who gives you your license if you pass there test i want to work as a psyc tech and hopefully go back after some experience to becom an Rn i dont have an Bs AA or anything i just want to make sure i can work as a psych tech are there plenty of good paying jobs while i earn my rn if that makes sense
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    I would contact the advisors at Mission College to see how the programs mesh since it offers both programs (or it used to). As I recall, you may get credit for one semester going to or from the LVN program, however, I don't remember precisely, as it was many years ago that I was associated with the program there.
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    The main employers used to be Agnews State Hospital, another state hospital, and the Salinas Valley State Prison. I believe that Agnews is completely closed now, so the prison may be the main employer for PTs in that region.
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    So is pscyh tech a good place to start or should i consider somthing else for now i mean i dont want to go thru three semesters and end up not being able to get hired to gain the experience i want
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    You would have more job opportunities, although not necessarily in that neck of the woods, if you get an LVN license. PT is very limited.
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    I not in CA but I am current working as a "mental health tech" and the only requirement was that we had to be a nursing student that had completed fundamentals and skills. I don't think as someone else stated that it would reduce the amount of classes that you would need to take for your RN. If I were you, I would research the program a little bit more it might be possible that after a few semesters in nursing school you could still get a job as a tech. On a side note, I never really thought about pysch nursing but finding that I am really enjoying it so when I graduate in December I might trying getting hired on as an RN at the facility. Pysch has its own kind of rewards as far as patient care. Good luck to you whatever you decide.
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    It probably won't reduce your courseload, but will give you good resume experience.

    But can't you get an associate's RN in like 4 semesters? Or don't you have your prereqs fulfilled?
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    Quote from loforsure
    sorry if this is off subject,im very interested in psychiatric nursing i live in northern ca and am considering becoming a psych tech to get a feel for the job its a short program here like 3 semesters and i hope will help me make the choice as to if nursing in a psychiatric area is for me
    absolutely. it gives you a great opportunity to learn how to interact with the mentally ill. it's all about communication (both verbal and non-verbal) in psych. you will actually interact more as a tech than as a nurse. trust me, you want to learn this fine art of interaction and communication if you plan to survive
    only you can decide what kind of financial commitment you can/will take to be a psych tech.
    for me, there was no class... literally hired me off the street. my cna and extensive background in geriatrics was a bonus. i was called a "pct" there. it was the mha's that are required to have a bachelor's in psych.

    Quote from loforsure
    my question is there good job opportunitys for psych techs?
    i wouldn't know, but i know we don't have people beating down our doors to be a psych tech! it's not something people ever think about when they are trying to decide what to do. if people do think of it, they either turn their nose up at it or are terrified of it.
    this is okay. let people think what they want because this means... jobs are available.
    however, this may not be the case everywhere. this is my observation of the opportunities around me.

    Quote from loforsure
    also when i decide would the psych tech schooling reduce the amount of classes i have to take to become an rn? any information would be greatly appreciated thanks.
    no. that's not how it works.
    i would suggest asking about tuition reimbursement or scholarships that are offered (or not) by any facility you are interested in working.
    my education was virtually free. i have no debt and earned back what i paid out-of-pocket with my first rn paycheck.
    so, what i'm saying is that, while you may not be able to cut the time down, you may find a way to cut your tuition down.

    by the way: i have never been bored a single day at work, either as a tech or a nurse. if you love people-watching and are fascinated by what comes out of people's head you will really really like it.


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