New RN, looking ahead; MPH? - page 2

by RNuninformed

Hello all! I'm a new RN, stil in my first couple months on the floor. I'm settling in well enough, enjoying the work/coworkers (I work in med-surg/tele, this was my first choice after graduation because I wanted the... Read More


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    Since you already have an MPH and you want to choose between ASN vs BSN I would go BSN because you have probably covered many of the courses you would need in that program.

    Also, with an mph you could still start your own program that can benefit maternal/child health or adolescent health. I'm sure that your mph has prepared you better than you may think.
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    Hey MissM472,

    I would definitely go for the BSN. Not only will a BSN make you a stronger candidate on paper (I would assume although I myself do not work in PH), there are TONS or accelerated, aleternate entry BSN programs out there for people who already hold bachelors in other fields. For example, my first degree was in liberal arts (not even a science!), and I figured out that it would actually take me less time AND money to get my BSN than my ADN. Isn't that crazy!? Plus, most of the nurses I know with associates are now back in school to get their BSN's. I realize that you're already over-educated, but I still vote for getting your BSN.
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    BSN -many states require BSN to work in public health. I live in CA -BSN required and a Public Health Nurse Cert from the BRN to work as public health nurse. I am currently work as public health nurse and am in school for my MSN with a focus in public health.
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    I would definitely recommend that you go for the BSN, mainly because you already have a bachelor's degree, and it's even in biology. With a BS in Biology, I believe you may have already completed the required biology classes for a BSN (for example - General Bio, Anatomy and Phys.1 & 2, Microbiology...). You may have even taken some chemistry, which is usually needed in BSN programs. You have completed general education courses as well. There may be a couple of courses you did not take through your BS in Biology (for example, Nutrition), but my guess is that you can probably concentrate mainly on the actually nursing courses if you go back to school for a BSN. Now, one benefit of getting an ADN is that it is usually a less expensive route since credits at a university/college tend to cost more than those at a 2-year institute such as community college. On that note, you would become a registered nurse while paying less. On the other hand, there are universities with considerably low tuition rates, as well as those that offer accelerated BSN programs if you already have a bachelor's degree in a different field. So, with all this said, you can decide which route is best for you. I recommend the BSN only because you have a BS in Biology which would knock out some of the courses you will have to take for your BSN. But if finances are a concern, community colleges can also provide very good RN programs that will prepare you to be a competent registered nurse. Hope that helps
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    RN-MS here who works as a PHN mainly in the disease control and prevention area of public health. I do some surveillance, disease investigations, outbreak response, TB case management/program oversight, & immunizations. If I wasn't drowning in student loan debt, I would go for the MPH with a focus in epidemiology-without hesitation. If I could go back, I probably would skip nursing school (Yikes! Did I type that out loud?). I would love to be an epi.
    MandaRN94 likes this.
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    Quote from mariebailey
    RN-MS here who works as a PHN mainly in the disease control and prevention area of public health. I do some surveillance, disease investigations, outbreak response, TB case management/program oversight, & immunizations. If I wasn't drowning in student loan debt, I would go for the MPH with a focus in epidemiology-without hesitation. If I could go back, I probably would skip nursing school (Yikes! Did I type that out loud?). I would love to be an epi.
    Thank you OP for this thread and thank you mariebailey for your comment. I am a BSN and thinking of going MPH Too. I am older and love public health and do not think I could do a MSN right now. Yes OP do tell more as you find out. I am interested.
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    Hello,
    I am currently in nursing school and will be graduating in May of 2013. I have several areas of interest within the nursing field, but I have found my true passion is public health. However, I am kind of stuck in a rut-- I want to pursue public health right after graduation and passing boards, but I am slightly scared that by not receiving the typical 'unit' experience may hinder my ability to move around some day (budget cuts, job loss, marketability, etc). Does anyone have advice as to the best approach? I am going to start applying in January to MPH programs around me to possible begin that next fall. How is going to school full time and working full time? Is it do-able?

    Also, how does one receive their certification as a public health nurse? I keep researching, but feel that I am not running into the correct site/link to read more into it.

    Lastly, is there any advice one maybe CEU's and/or free courses to take in specialty areas of MPH? I am interested in all specialty areas (epidemiology, infectious, policy, environmental, etc), but I am not sure which one I personally want to pursue.

    Thank you very much!
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    RNuninformed-

    I can relate. I figured it out in undergrad as well (BSN) that I am interested in population health.

    No matter what you do, your license is invaluable. So is your experience. I served in the Peace Corps as a health adviser after working as a nurse in a correctional facility for about a year and a half. That experience you have is critical when you get into your graduate program, because the world of PH is large and often undefined, and you need to know what you want to get from it. That said, it will be difficult for me to find a job if I decide to return to clinical nursing. Something to consider.

    The other RNs in my program are duals, MPH/MSN who will all become NPs. This makes it even harder to figure out where RNs fit in PH. From what I have seen, those who are in public health but really defined as nurses are leaders in local state health clinics. Otherwise you will find something else where your nursing knowledge can be of use, or just help you compete with the many others who just have an MPH (I know several people who decided to get their nursing license AFTER grad school- you will have an advantage over them).

    Since you're interested in Epi, check out EIS. They are the rock stars of public health. Usually they only accept applicants with PhDs, unless you are a health professional. That means you could apply right after grad school. I met an RN this year in EIS, and the work she has done is unbelievable. And she loves it.
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    I have an MPH and also an RN. It's been difficult getting the MPH positions I desire because I don't have that clinical experience. I was offered a job as a clinic manager of a women's health clinic (dream job!!) but because I didn't have the hospital bedside experience, I was turned down. Definitely go for the MPH and the BSN, but get your clinical experience as well. You can always go back to bedside until your dream job comes around...
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    I'm a new nurse (with less than 1 year experience) who changed careers. I have my BSN and also thinking about my future in nursing. Currently, I'm on an acute care unit that is fast-paced. The rare times that I get to spend some time talking with my patients, I feel happiest being a nurse. How much experience in the clinical setting is considered "enough"?


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