The reality of my situation

  1. Well, I'm 37 and will be 38 this year. I was applying to the LPN program here in Las Vegas (I know this is the VA forum, bear with me). I'd be done in May 2014. I was going to take my NCLEX-PN in Virginia after relocating with my gf and twins.

    I have a CNA license in Virginia. My gf would be working soon as well, not worried about that at all.

    Here's the problem. I may not get accepted into LPN school. My options at that point is:

    1) Maintain my CNA position at the hospital, take the 5 remaining courses between Summer 2013 & Spring 2014 and apply to a BSN program starting Spring 2015.

    2) Take a Pharmacy Tech course over Fall 2013-Spring 2014 while doing the 5 prerequisites I have remaining.

    My thing is I make $15/hr as a CNA here in Nevada. I don't think I'll make that in Virginia. I also don't know the job market for Pharmacy Techs there either. Here, money-wise, it's a lateral position in comparison to CNA's. If I don't get into the LPN program I'd much rather do option 1.

    I'm trying to make as much money as I can until I get my BSN. Going from a state with no state tax making $15/hr to one that has state tax and making less worries me. We have to move next May regardless. So I'm going to be in Virginia summer 2014. As it stands now, I have a CNA license here and there (I endorsed it from Nevada).

    What's my best option for income between Summer 2014 & my BSN? Should I even turn down the LPN program? I only want to be a maximum provider and help take care of our twins. What do I do?
  2. Visit pacjeffery profile page

    About pacjeffery

    Joined: Jan '13; Posts: 149; Likes: 18


  3. by   HeatherMax
    Pharmacy Techs here in the Hampton roads area start out at $8.50 an hour, and school is not required to work in a pharmacy here, so I wouldn't waste your time and $ on that. Pharmacy tech jobs are very hard to come by around here, unless you have 5 years retail experience and 1 year hospital pharmacy experience. I would stick with the CNA and continue working on your pre-requisites. I would also research all the the BSN programs in the area and chart what each schools requirements are. I looked at three different schools and the required pre-requisites differed by a lot. I am a CPhT, and the job market here bites. I maxed out at $10.50 an hour
  4. by   pacjeffery
    It seems as though CNA's are paid around that as well. If I felt it would be ok, I'd tough it out on CNA salary for 2-3 years until I got my BSN. But even with my gf working, I don't know if $10/hr will cut it.
  5. by   HeatherMax
    What about a PCT school out there? They are in high demand out here, same as phlebotomy.
  6. by   pacjeffery
    PCT? Patient Care Tech? We don't have those here nor the training. What does phlebotomy pay?
  7. by   gunrock
    PCTs are the same as CNA just different terminology for the most part.

    I honestly wouldn't bother getting an LPN or ASN. I would just go for your BSN (since it sounds like that's one of your options). Many hospitals in their desire to get Magnet Certification are moving away from associates nurses and going to only BSN nurses.
  8. by   pacjeffery
    I agree with you, gunrock. Look at this: a CNA in VA makes $9-12/hr and an LPN $15-17/hr. Now a $5/hr difference may not mean much but that extra $125 a week pays for diapers and formula for my twins (ok a portion of it). So $500 a monthly is a lot for me. If I can get a CNA job in VA making $14/hr I would feel better. Maybe even phlebotomy. But I know we won't make ends meet with me making only $9/hr.
  9. by   wish_me_luck
    pac, I am in VA and I have nursing and pharmacy tech licenses and pharmacy tech market is not any better. I think everyone went into healthcare jobs whether they like the field or not, thinking that there would be plenty of jobs.
  10. by   HeatherMax
    I was just looking at CPhT job postings, $7.25 an hour is what I am finding right now... bites.
  11. by   HeatherMax
    PCT's do blood and EKG's, I think that is the main difference. A friend of mine just got hired at a big name hospital in town as phlebotomist for $13.10 an hour, but, she has 3 years experience. She applied at three different places and was offered a job at all three. I think CNA still pays better esp, if you have experience. Good luck!
  12. by   pacjeffery
    Well I have three years CNA experience in hospitals (Med/Surg, ortho, neuro & rehab), SNF's & corrections (which included psych). To become a Phlebotomist is a 1-semester course. HeatherMax, do you think a CNA with 3 years experience is good for $14+/hr in the Chesapeake area?
  13. by   HeatherMax
    I don't know if $14 is doable, but I know there is zero chance of it as a pharmacy tech. Once you have an interview you can ask for the higher amount. But from what I have heard LPN's around here start at about $15 an hour, so $14 for a CNA might be pushing it too.
  14. by   llg
    You don't say where in Virginia you will be moving to. It might make a big difference. For example, Northern Virginia (around Washington, DC) is very different from Southwest Virginia. The availabilty of educational programs in different regions of the state can dramatically effect the local job market.

    Before you make any final decisions, I think you should check out the specific job market where you will moving. What people are reporting here depends on where in Virginia they live. The region you move to may have very different conditions. It's a very diverse state.