How much will a dismal undergrad GPA prior to nursing effect chances of NP school?

  1. I originally went to school and for Political Science fresh out of HS and did absolutely horrible in school due to laziness and having way too much fun. I graduated with my BA with a 2.59 GPA.

    After college I went onto fire academy and paramedic school and have worked as a medic for almost 4 years now. I am back in school pursuing nursing and have gotten 9 As and a B in my last 10 post-bacc courses for nursing pre-reqs and extra stuff to boost my GPA. I start a 1 year transition to nursing program next year after which I plan on applying to direct entry MSN-NP programs specifically psychiatric NP.

    Will my poor undergraduate GPA prior to my post-bacc career kill my chances of admission into a program? I am hoping that doing awesome in all my post-bacc courses, nursing transition, medic experience, and being a male will help me get into a program. Would it be wise to go straight onto an online BSN through a university while I gain experience?

    Also do you guys think me taking my post-bacc classes at a community college as well as my nursing transition will hurt my chances? I have heard that some programs frown upon CCs but its whats closest to me and most convenient with my 24 on/48 off firefighter schedule.

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    Joined: Aug '12; Posts: 21; Likes: 2


  3. by   Aliakey
    Wow... your history sounds very similar mine (well, except the gender and FF part, lol!)!

    If it helps, I asked the same question to the advisor of my local university, as I am also interested in the NP program down the road. I had a not-so-stellar GPA for my BS when I was working full time, carrying 16+ units, and goofing off many years ago, but almost all "A"s for my recent nursing and general education courses taken towards my AS in nursing (and still working full time in EMS). In between my BS and nursing school, I had a lot of time to "grow up", take some falls, and see the benefit of education.

    The university's program advisor told me this: While they must look at your GPA and coursework that contributed your BS (or BA) degree due to the minimum GPA requirement, they will also place high consideration towards significant improvement in the most recent college coursework. They realize that change happens in life, and a turn towards the better will not be ignored as long as the courses were from an accredited college or university. The advisor told me it didn't matter about the source of the courses (I had the same concerns as you), as long as the US Department of Education accepted regional accreditation was there and the recent courses were considered challenging in some form. In other words, any Basics of Underwater Basketweaving 101 courses were not regarded highly, or grades earned from the unaccredited Wikipedia School of Medicine, which many of my patient's family members seem to be graduates of ( )

    This particular university's program is not impacted, which may make a difference in my case. And, my cumulative GPA does exceed the minimum entry requirements.

    I know it doesn't answer all of your questions, but hope that lil' bit helps. I guess my advice would be to contact the advisor of the particular university you are interested in; the person I contacted was very helpful and provided other information I had not considered at that time, but was important to know. However, IMHO, your pursuit of the NP education seems well within reach.

    Good luck!
  4. by   CherylRNBSN
    Why and how would being male affect your candidacy?