Advice for Someone who has English Bachelor's and full-time job, wants to be a Nurse

  1. Hello,
    I am a 33 year old male (almost 34) who has a Bachelor's in English and also a full-time job. I live in the Northern VA area (Falls Church, VA).

    I know there are Accelerated Second Degree Bachelor's programs for people who already have a Bachelor's (even if in an unrelated field). I know Marymount offers this. I imagine there are more, too.

    1. Do you know if there is a way I can take the Acclerated Second Degree Bachelor's programs on the evenings or on weekends? I can't give up my job as that is my primary source of income.

    2. If I can't do that, do you know if I could take the Associates Degree courses on evenings or weekends (I think NOVA - NVCC has this option), and then do an Associates to Bachelor's (RN to BSN?) program on evenings or weekends after that?

    Or would option 2 take way too much time? I'm really confused about which way to proceed. If someone can help me, I would appreciate it very much.
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    About Dave234

    Joined: Jun '12; Posts: 3; Likes: 2


  3. by   delawaremalenurse
    Accelerated programs are highly compressed and full-time ...60+ hours per week with classes, clinicals, & studying...most programs highly discourage or actively forbid working during the program

    ADN programs that are evening/weekend are still, for the most part, considered full time. Again 60+ hours with classes, clinicals, and studying. Typically evening/weekend refers to the clinical option (i.e. that's when you'll do your clinicals...3-11 on Friday/Saturday's). Check with your program of interest.

    Before you even get into a program you'll need to do the pre-req' long it takes and how many will be determined by your program but your probably looking at 1-2+ years to complete program pre-req's before matriculating into the nursing program
  4. by   vwalker6144
    I assume you are in the Northern Virginia area, please check with George Mason University, they have different nursing programs, one of them might be just right for you. Please go in and speak with a counselor regarding which support classes you already have from your previous degree vs which ones are needed before admission into the program. Good Luck!
  5. by   jnemartin
    I am in a very similar situation (BA in Journalism, making a career change to nursing). The accelerated BSN programs are designed for people that already have a BA/BS in another field, or for very serious undergrads, and having a work history in any field will give you an advantage and maturity. For 9 out of 10 programs, you will need to take several pre-req's that you did not take in undergrad (chem and organic chem, anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, developmental psych, and some other very nursing-specific classes). The exception to this rule (the 1 in 10 school!) is that there are some schools (for example Chamberlain college of nursing), usually for-profit schools, that do not require any course work to be completed prior to acceptance into the RN program- they give you everything. The downside is that these programs are cost prohibitive (think 80K).

    While you are taking pre-reqs, work away! And save as much money as possible! The accelerated BSN programs are, as someone already mentioned, more than a FT job and you will be attending classes during the AM and clinicals in the afternoon/PM/overnight. You will really not have time to work. The accelerated BSN programs are only a 12-15 months, so you are compressing a 2-3 year education into that short amount of time... leaving very little time for a job.

    That being said, you may be able to work a job with flexible hours (like serving or tutoring), but a regular 9-5 is almost out of the question. I hope this doesn't discourage you! I am going through the same thing right now - completing my pre-reqs and starting to choose an accelerated program on the west coast.

    Best of luck!
  6. by   Dave234
    Thanks, everyone! One problem I do have is that I did not do very well in the university where I graduated - I had like a 2.0.... That was over 10 years ago, though, and I have matured a LOT. I know what I want in life, and it is to help people through nursing. I was raised by two doctors and I know that I can be an excellent nurse.

    I would hope that I would be accepted....
  7. by   elkpark
    There is so much competition for seats in most nursing programs these days that a 2.0 (or thereabouts) GPA is not going to be very competitive. The last BSN program in which I taught (a state uni program, respectable but not prestigious or distinguished) said in all of their literature that a 2.5 GPA was the minimum to apply, but the reality was that no one with less than a 3.7 got admitted, just because there were so many qualified applicants with GPAs that high or higher that all the seats were filled before they got around to considering anyone with lower GPAs. A lot of nursing programs are in that situation these days, and you'd be amazed at who is not getting into nursing programs these days ... However, different schools handle admissions differently. It certainly can't hurt to talk to schools that interest you.

    Also, you will have an opportunity to bring up your GPA with your prerequisite coursework, and some schools look primarily at the grades in your prerequisite and science courses, rather than your overall GPA. Best wishes for your journey!
  8. by   mariebailey
    Taking your nursing pre-requisites will give you an opportunity to improve your GPA. Don't let that discourage you from considering nursing. I completed an accelerated program without working, and it was still challenging. Can you work part-time and take out a small student loan? Make sure it's federal, direct, and subsidized! I'm pretty sure RN to BSN programs are designed to accommodate RNs who are working full-time (online, weekends, 1 day/week). Good luck!