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Change in careers

Pre-Nursing   (154 Views | 4 Replies)
by Sharon.xo Sharon.xo (New) New Nurse Student Pre-Student

9 Profile Views; 1 Post

Hi all

I am thinking about a career change from accounting to nursing, I have never felt like I belonged in a business field. The people are cut throat to get to the top. I'm a friendly, easy going person, some would say 'soft'. I would describe myself as someone who tends to care of others feelings more than a usual person would. I'm in my mid 30s and I quit my job because the environment became very toxic to me my last 3 years. I was always miserable in this field because the ling hours (12+ hours for 6 days a week sometimes with no pay). I did this for 13 years and it was my first real job since college. I'm very scared to make the change because I'm worried about if this is the right path for me. Can anyone who experienced this give some advice and knowledge of how you made the change? I graduated with a BBA degree in accounting so I have some prerequisites that I need for an accelerated program. Just need some encouragement and a nudge in the right direction. Thanks for your help!

Edited by Sharon.xo
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3 Posts; 21 Profile Views

I took the plunge-I am 36 with 3 kids and a heart for people (particulary kids and babies). I worked in a COMPLETELY unrelated field for 13 years but have always felt pulled towards nursing and decided to just try (with the support of my husband).  I just finished my first semester taking prereqs and am about to apply.  I am scared to death but hoping i get accepted.  I have heard that it works in your favor for many programs if you have a previous degree.

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297 Posts; 1,167 Profile Views

I would suggest you start by volunteering at a hospital or clinic first, to get a feel of how things are/run. You get exposure to the inner-workings of a hospital.  Not only will this expose you to healthcare, but it is also something many schools prefer and, in some programs are required, when applying for a second degree program.

Based on what you wrote, it sounds as if right now you are not working.  You might also choose the path of getting a CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) certification so you can start working in a hospital to see if it will be something you like.  Most CNA programs can run anywhere between 4-12 weeks.  Become certified and apply for a job. At least this way you're not out a lot of $$ if it turns out you don't like it.  If you do like it, then you can apply to nursing school and, of course, this will also look good on your school application!

In the meantime, start taking prerequisites.  Look @ the schools you want to apply to and see what is needed.  I'm not sure which classes you have already taken which fill prerequisites (as mentioned in your post), but  many schools have a time limit on the core science classes so you may have to retake some of those.  If you have C's in any of your prerequisite classes, I'd advise to retake them and aim for an A, or at the very least a B.  It's cut-throat when applying to nursing schools too -- at least in some areas of the country.

Good luck!

Edited by Mergirlc
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4 Posts; 28 Profile Views


I am not a nurse yet, but I am a 30 year old starting an ABSN program next week and come from a business background. I have a bachelor's and master's of accounting, CPA and almost 7 years of experience at a Big 4 so I can definitely relate to being scared to make a career change. I was happy for a long time in my prior career, but realized that I was becoming a more unhappy and unfulfilled person the further up the ladder I moved.

It took me almost 2 years to fully commit to making a change. Here were my steps:

1. Researched the different degree programs available and their requirements for admission. I ultimately chose to try for ABSN programs and then have traditional BSN and ADN programs as alternates in case I couldn't get into an ABSN. I was willing to relocate anywhere in the US and looked for schools that met my requirements for NCLEX pass rates, attrition rate, class size and cost.

2. Volunteered at a few healthcare facilities near me over the course of 12+ months (med-surg unit at a large teaching hospital, LTC facility, 60-bed ED). This experience was really invaluable to me, because I was able to spend a significant amount of time in environments that I never experienced in my prior career or even personal life. It also solidified my desire to pursue nursing as a second career in a more low-risk setting compared to quitting my job and becoming a CNA. 

3. Enrolled in pre-requisite courses (did this along with working and volunteering). I took all of mine online since I wanted the flexibility, but it does limit the programs that you can apply to since some schools require in-person labs. I found some sections of each class to be challenging and require a lot of dedication to memorize and retain the information, but I really enjoyed the material and was able to get all A's.

4. Started applying to programs. I applied to and was accepted by my first choice school (and the first school to which I applied), but many people apply to 5+ if they are in competitive areas and don't want to move. 

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6 Posts; 96 Profile Views

Hey there!

I am in the process of making a career change into the nursing field.  Like you, I am in my mid 30s and spent way too much time post-college in a career that I felt I never belonged in and became unfulfilling. I couldn’t imagine doing what I was doing for the rest of my working life.

I always had an interest in nursing, but thought it wasn’t for me because I struggled with science coursework in high school and college.  Then, a few years ago, my dad was very ill and I was his caretaker and interacted with a lot of his nurses and care providers.  I was touched and in awe of his nurses and my interest in nursing reopened.

Honestly, I was really scared too. It wasn’t a decision I could make lightly and wanted to make sure this time around, I would be happy with my decision. I did a lot of research and I talked to as many nurses as I could.  I went on blogs, this site, reached out to people I haven’t spoken to in years to get as many opinions and as much insight into nursing as I could. 

I took my prerequisite courses (Anatomy, Physiology, Micro and Chem) at a local community college while working FT and LOVED being back in school and found a lot of the material interesting. You want to do well in your pre-reqs so I recommend taking 1/semester if you are working.  You may also need to take a few additional pre-reqs if they were not required for your previous undergrad degree.

Once all your pre-reqs are complete, you’ll need to take the TEAS and you can then start applying to programs.

I feel that with nursing, you’ll always have a job and there are so many different avenues that you could pursue and there is always room for growth.

Best of luck to you!

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