Further your education?

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    I am a student nurse and will be graduating in December 2012 with an ADN (associate in nursing). I have been told since day one I need to "go on" and get my bachelor degree and there is going to be a day when they will only accept RNs with a BSN. I want to get other nurses opinions on this. When is the "best" time to get my bachelor degree? Is it better to go right for it after graduating or to work for a year or two before going to get my bachelor degree?
    Thank you
    Joe V likes this.

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  3. 12 Comments...

  4. 1
    It depends on where you live. I live in the Boston area and it was very difficult (but not impossible) to land a job with an ADN. I did manage to secure a position (twice) but my options are limited - I can't work in any of the major hospitals in the city because there is too much competition in this market.

    However if you live in a small town or have a hospital affiliated with your school of nursing, you may be able to wait a few years and qualify for tuition reimbursement.
    CSISN likes this.
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    I have been working for about 2 1/2 years and am just now starting on my BSN. It was nice to have a break after nursing school to just work before I added something else on my plate.
    Not_A_Hat_Person and CSISN like this.
  6. 0
    sbostonRN- Thanks for your comment. Sorry to hear you had a hard time getting a job with an ADN. I try not to put too much thought into it but I do worry about not being able to find a job after all my hard work. I never thought about tuition reimbursement. I will keep that into mind when weighing my options.

    RNmom2010- It is so nice to hear that you made the choice to work for 2 1/2 years and now you are going for your BSN. I am a mom too and I am feeling like my family and I need a break from school. Still trying to weigh all my options. Thanks for the comment.
  7. 2

    The tuition reimbursement is a very significant point. I have a different reason I think it might be a good idea to wait. First off, I was perfectly content with my ADN education for 19 years. I also never had trouble getting a job, but consider that I was only a new grad RN once so . . . I decided to go back to school mostly because my husband was doing it and I knew I would probably never get it done without a lot of support and I wasn't getting any younger.

    Since I've been back I've really enjoyed my classes (oh, it was rough at the start). I finally "get" so much of what we never had time to fully understand in my ADN program. Now, waiting nearly 20 years is overdoing it a bit, but I think some real nursing experience gives me a framework to hang all my new knowledge on. Being a few years more mature hasn't hurt either (I was barely 21 as a new RN).

    But do yourself a favor and don't get complacent. I restarted school about 3 times right after I graduated, and withdrew from almost all the classes. I had a good job, good income, and just not enough motivation to get it done. It would have been a lot easier 15-20 years ago. My brain definitely works much slower now.

    Best of luck!
    CSISN and PPursleyRNCNN like this.
  8. 0
    I planned to take the first year after getting my ASN to just learn how to be a nurse without having to do homework at the same time. I got my ASN in May of 2011 and started my online BSN in August of 2012 and will finish in December 2013. It's a lot of work right now, mainly because in August I also changed from Med Surg to ICU, but it's worth it! Manage your time well, and you'll be fine with school. Just don't wait too long to start!
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    Like someone else said it depends where you live. If you live in an area where the market is saturated such as NYC or Boston you might want to start looking into bridge programs right away. I've heard in those areas it's very hard for an ADN to get a job, but if they see you are already working on your BSN your chances of landing a job are better.

    Where I live it's still fairly easy for ADNs to find a job in a hospital, and some of the hospitals here will still reimburse you for your BSN. Many ADN grads I know got a job, and waited 6 months - a year before going back. It gave them enough of a break from school, but at the same time they didn't feel "rusty" when they got back into the school atmosphere.
  10. 1
    I agree, if you are in an area where new grads are having a hard time getting jobs, I would go right away as it's a selling point. I live in NYC and it's brutal here but I know one of the reasons I got hired was because I was already enrolled in a bridge program.
    CSISN likes this.
  11. 1
    I would work first, that way you can get tuition reimbursement.
    CSISN likes this.
  12. 0
    To take in to thought about experience too. in my area you can have an LPN/ADN to work in a jail, nursing home, home health and a doctors office. but you need a BSN and one years perfered experience as an RN to work in a Hospital (small town or down in the big city because they are all owned by the same company). but I live in north eastern Indiana. I myself think it would be smart to get your ADN go get a job in a nursing home or in a home health servince and gain experience as an RN (whether you work 3 months to 10 years before going for your BSN) while going to school for your BSN then you will have 1-3 years experience before getting a job at a hospital if thats where you want to be or you want to have options. I hear that ADNs get more clinical experience plus with working in a nursing home or HH service you would be golden after you got your BSN (atleast I would think any way) but then again this is some what my plan so I think its right when in fact it could be wrong but I need more risk and thrill in my life lol but you do what you think is right. I myself want to be an all over type of nurse not afraid to do anything even if I dont like it do it for the patients/residents. and that is why I want to go with my plan so I have options

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