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Can I work during an ABSN program?

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by Bloop41 Bloop41, CNA (Member) Member

524 Profile Views; 31 Posts

I'm deciding between two ABSN programs and I'm wondering if anyone here has completed such a program and done part time work while enrolled. Most of the admissions people were adamant that working was not advisable for these programs, but I wanted to hear from actual students/alums of these programs. 

One program is 12 mos in a relatively expensive city while the other is 15 mos in a much cheaper area. I'd plan to work for 15 hrs/week maximum, if I do decide to work. Any information y'all could give me is much appreciated 🙂

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157 Posts; 722 Profile Views

I'm in a 15-month program, and we have quite a few who work part time. Though we've also had a couple people who came in working part time and quit the first semester.

If you are good at time management and the job is flexible, then it's definitely do-able in a 15-month program.

Now all this condensed into 12-months? Idk if you could work and learn what you need to learn unless you are really good at getting info down fast.

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

1 Follower; 3,522 Posts; 32,219 Profile Views

I worked two 12 hr night shifts (F-S) every week while going through my ABSN program. I worked as a sleep technologist, so I had plenty of time to study and work on papers after the patients went to sleep. It wasn't ideal to go to classes all day and then work twelve hours, but it was what I had to do to slow the bleed of money every month from tuition, books, and normal household expenses.

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31 Posts; 524 Profile Views

15 hours ago, EmDash said:

I'm in a 15-month program, and we have quite a few who work part time. Though we've also had a couple people who came in working part time and quit the first semester.

If you are good at time management and the job is flexible, then it's definitely do-able in a 15-month program.

Now all this condensed into 12-months? Idk if you could work and learn what you need to learn unless you are really good at getting info down fast.

Ugh, this is exactly my worry with the 12 mos program, even without working at all. I'm finding it difficult to figure out the cost difference between cost of living, time in the program, and ability to work. 

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415 Posts; 2,008 Profile Views

Here's why working isn't advisable:

If you miss clinical, you have to go to one of the already planned and approved days to make it up.  If you can't make it on a Wednesday, you can't make it up on a Thursday.

If your teachers has to miss a clinical, you're at the mercy of the school.  If the teacher had to miss a clinical on Wednesday, you might have to go in on Thursday or it counts as an absence.

If you're going to a good school (who doesn't pull any of what I wrote above), you can work.

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verene specializes in mental health / psychiatic nursing.

1,533 Posts; 9,837 Profile Views

I went to a 15 months program and did not work. Some of my peers did work - typically no more than 12 hours per week. Those who fared best while working either had extremely flexible jobs with good supervisor relationships or held work-study positions at the school. 

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26 Posts; 437 Profile Views

Not speaking from personal experience, but a close friend of mine did a 15 month ABSN while working 2 per diem PCT jobs at busy hospitals. I think she worked twice a week, 12 hour shifts? She's currently doing her FNP while still working the same jobs (she just got another per diem job as an RN as well)! Not for the faint of heart, but yes, definitely doable.

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thecareerchanger specializes in none.

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I worked per diem as a unit clerk on weekends when I was in a 15 month ABSN program and continued with the job working 3 days a week until I got hired as an RN at same hospital. Majority of my classmates had p/t or per diem jobs. Not easy but definitely doable if your job is flexible enough

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FullGlass has 1 years experience as a BSN, MSN, NP and specializes in Adult and Geriatric Primary Care.

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For the 15 month ABSN program - working part time is possible, but no more than 15 hours per week and only if you have excellent time-management skills and are confident you can still have adequate study time.  I am a classic over-achiever and the ABSN was the hardest academic program I have ever done; it was harder than my MSN.  Some of my classmates worked part-time, but only for the first 1 or 2 semesters.  It was strongly advised that students not work.

For 12 month ABSN program, no way should you work unless you are confident nursing school material is going to be really easy for you.

You will have classroom and clinic hours.  And in addition, the rule of thumb is 3 hours of studying for every 1 hour in class.  Most people in my 15 month ABSN program were studying about 40 hours per week, on top of lectures and clinical time.   Clinical time is going to be 16 to 24 hours per week and don't forget to add commuting time.  That doesn't leave much time for anything else.

If you plan to continue your education beyond the ABSN in order to become an NP, CRNA, or educator, then you will need to get good grades and unless you are superwoman, then that is not going to be easy.

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