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Anyone know anything about accelerated nursing programs??

Pre-Nursing   (1,895 Views 24 Comments)
by 4pplepie99 4pplepie99 (New Member) New Member Student

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I am currently still in my undergrad years and I am majoring in something non-nurse related (BS in medical anthropology) and I had suddenly felt a change of mind and heart to fulfill a career as a nurse but everyone keeps telling me it's too late for me. I did some research online and I came across some programs called a second degree nursing program or an accelerated nursing program? Does anyone know much about that and it's competitiveness? I'm not the most stellar student when it comes to GPA (3.0) so would it be worth a shot to apply or is it out of the question? Has anyone gone through this program and like to share their experience (it would be greatly appreciated 🙂 ) 

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Accelerated BSNs are usually competitive, expensive and may not be not eligible for traditional student loans. Just because you have a BS, doesn’t mean you can’t go to a community college for your nursing degree. Community colleges are also very competitive, but they are the cheapest option (they might also not be eligible for traditional student loans).  Depending on where you are, an ADN May limit your job prospects, but there are a myriad of online RN-to-BSN programs that can be completed online in about a year.  Your prior degree will mean essentially nothing when looking for a job as a nurse 

Research what programs exist in your area, the minimum GPA requirements, any prerequisites needed prior to admission, and NCLEX pass rates. Make sure you pick an accredited school.

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5 minutes ago, beekee said:

Accelerated BSNs are usually competitive, expensive and may not be not eligible for traditional student loans. Just because you have a BS, doesn’t mean you can’t go to a community college for your nursing degree. Community colleges are also very competitive, but they are the cheapest option (they might also not be eligible for traditional student loans).  Depending on where you are, an ADN May limit your job prospects, but there are a myriad of online RN-to-BSN programs that can be completed online in about a year.  Your prior degree will mean essentially nothing when looking for a job as a nurse 

Research what programs exist in your area, the minimum GPA requirements, any prerequisites needed prior to admission, and NCLEX pass rates. Make sure you pick an accredited school.

So would my degree just go to waste? And my local community college does offer an AASN. Could I use the classes taken at my university and apply them to those prereqs so I won’t have to take them again? And in your opinion, do you think that going to a community college would be a better path than an accelerated program?

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Accelerated programs do not typically draw their student populations from those with poor undergrad GPA’s.  Also there are many examples of good students who found themselves dropping back to traditional BSN programs because they could not keep up with the intense pace.  You need to speak to the nursing advisors at the programs you are interested in applying to.  The nursing advisors are the best source of advice for someone with your academic background.

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CalicoKitty has 7 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Med-surg.

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The accelerated program I went through was a 2nd degree program. I did have to repeat a few science courses since they needed to be less than 5 years old. I got into one with about a 3.0. I got A's on the repeated science courses (I took those at a community college) and other needed prereqs. I also took the GRE and did pretty well. I also had a career where I was published on some journal articles. So, those may have "helped" me get in with my less than stellar GPA.

If you're currently in school and really not doing well, I think your best bet is to try to improve your GPA. Nursing school tends to have some challenging courses with grading scales that put failing at 75-80 (and no "rounding up". If you had a 74.99, you're out. There really is no room for slacking, and accelerated programs are basically full time jobs - 3 days of classes, 2 clinicals every week. Being tardy is not accepted.

As far as "too late for you", there are plenty of people graduating in their 30s-40s, some even in their 60s. It can be a fulfilling career, but I'm glad I was older when I entered the field. Not sure I would have been "ready" for it when younger. But, that's me, and there are plenty of young nurses in the field, too.

Btw, some community colleges are also hard to get into. GPA is very important. Community colleges are less expensive, so many want to get into those programs (and many have very good local reputations).

Edited by CalicoKitty

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39 minutes ago, 4pplepie99 said:

So would my degree just go to waste? And my local community college does offer an AASN. Could I use the classes taken at my university and apply them to those prereqs so I won’t have to take them again? And in your opinion, do you think that going to a community college would be a better path than an accelerated program?

You’d need to speak with the school about whether your classes would transfer. Some community colleges in my area give you bonus points towards admission if you take the prerequisites at that school. With your GPA, you may need that boost. 

For example, my community college accepted less than 10% of the applicants. I had a prior degree with a low GPA as well.  The community college’s method of selecting students was limited to certain criteria that made it possible for me to get in (instead of straight GPA). That’s why you should look at ALL the options in your area. 

In my area, the accelerated BSN programs are super expensive and the community colleges actually have a better reputation. So, better school and cheaper. It was a no brainer for me.  Plus, accelerated programs don’t allow for a job.  I needed to work throughout school (but even working through an associate degree is tough).

And, yeah, except for courses that transfer, there’s probably no use to that degree. Associate degree in nursing plus bachelors degree in non-nursing = associate degree in nursing. Bachelors degree in nursing plus bachelors degree in non-nursing = bachelors degree in nursing.  You are also limiting future funding/loans.  Maybe others have had a different experience?  

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13 minutes ago, beekee said:

You’d need to speak with the school about whether your classes would transfer. Some community colleges in my area give you bonus points towards admission if you take the prerequisites at that school. With your GPA, you may need that boost. 

For example, my community college accepted less than 10% of the applicants. I had a prior degree with a low GPA as well.  The community college’s method of selecting students was limited to certain criteria that made it possible for me to get in (instead of straight GPA). That’s why you should look at ALL the options in your area. 

In my area, the accelerated BSN programs are super expensive and the community colleges actually have a better reputation. So, better school and cheaper. It was a no brainer for me.  Plus, accelerated programs don’t allow for a job.  I needed to work throughout school (but even working through an associate degree is tough).

And, yeah, except for courses that transfer, there’s probably no use to that degree. Associate degree in nursing plus bachelors degree in non-nursing = associate degree in nursing. Bachelors degree in nursing plus bachelors degree in non-nursing = bachelors degree in nursing.  You are also limiting future funding/loans.  Maybe others have had a different experience?  

Yea I’m afraid that I wasted four years earning a degree that won’t even matter in the long run of a nursing career. 😞 I was interested in the career of a nurse practitioner so would that mean I would finish my BS right now, go get an AASN, then go back to get a BSN and masters? Also how long would that whole process take me then including one more year at the university I’m still attending?

Edited by 4pplepie99

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21 minutes ago, 4pplepie99 said:

Yea I’m afraid that I wasted four years earning a degree that won’t even matter in the long run of a nursing career. 😞 I was interested in the career of a nurse practitioner so would that mean I would finish my BS right now, go get an AASN, then go back to get a BSN and masters? Also how long would that whole process take me then including one more year at the university I’m still attending?

1 year to finish current degree

2-3 years for associate degree (possibly more depending on how many prerequisites you need)

1 year for BSN

(obviously, you can shorten this will an accelerated program, but you only you can determine if the extra cost is worth the less time....and remember nursing school is HARD...most people in my class at the community college had prior degrees, many with advanced degrees, and nearly a quarter dropped out or failed out)  

I strongly recommend you work for a year or two before heading to NP school.  Others will tell you this isn’t necessary.  I’m not a NP, so I my opinion probably matters little here! 

Many NP programs are doctorate programs now. I haven’t looked into how long those take.  3 years maybe?  I really have no idea.  

If advanced practice is your goal, you will want to look at the physician assistant programs as well.  There are definitely differences between the two, but add those programs to the list to research. 

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NICU Guy has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in NICU.

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I did a 15 month ABSN program. It was very intense and fast paced. ABSN programs are best suited for students that can comprehend content fairly easy. You need to be highly organized because tests, assignments, term papers come up quickly and there is no time to procrastinate. You also need a very stable home life and a good support system. You need to devote 95% of your attention on the program. Any distractions from your personal life that requires a lot of your attention will bury you in the program.

Although it was very stressful, I would do it again instead of a traditional nursing program. I believe I am a far better nurse by going through the ABSN program than a traditional program. Every one of my classmates was focused on learning all they could in the classes. Each one of us brought knowledge from our first degrees that was useful in the nursing program. I had classmates that have degrees in psychology, athletic training, sport fitness, neurobiology, Each one brought useful information to the class discussions. 

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2 minutes ago, CharleeFoxtrot said:

 

Ah...the nursing consolation prize is not easy?  What?!?!  

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CharleeFoxtrot has 7 years experience as a ADN, RN.

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14 minutes ago, beekee said:

Ah...the nursing consolation prize is not easy?  What?!?!  

Oh somehow that posted without my additional comment sorry beekee!  I thought I typed that perhaps the mods should merge these threads for continuity's sake.

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