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changing careers to nursing - worth it?

cochiro cochiro (New) New

Hi, I am considering doing an accelerated BSN. I am a recent graduate of a doctor of chiropratic program. I have been out of school about seven months, and just have not been satisfied and hard to make money, long story.....but I want to stay in healthcare.

I am interested in hearing from some new or experienced nurses on:

a) if you think nursing is a career worth switching to

b) i know the market may be saturated, is it possible for a new grad to find a job?

c) average salary

Any information would be greatly appreciated. This has been more than a little stressful spending so much on an education and then not really feeling like its the career for me.


After reading a lot of the comments on this site though, it seems job satisfaction is not very high in nursing either, and hard to find a job. Can you start applying for jobs well before you graduate?

klone, MSN, RN

Specializes in Women's Health/OB Leadership. Has 15 years experience.

I would not recommend anyone go into nursing right now, especially in Denver. Market saturation is an understatement.

meanmaryjean, DNP, RN

Specializes in NICU, ICU, PICU, Academia. Has 40 years experience.

You cannot apply for nursing jobs unless you ARE a nurse (graduated, taken and passed NCLEX) unless you are perhaps working as a tech/ student on a unit and have been promised a position.

I'm sorry that you are not pursuing chiropractic. Maybe you should give it some more time instead of jumping into something else. Maybe a different work environment? It just seems like a waste....

777RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Geriatrics, dementia, hospice. Has 6 years experience.


Have you considered physical therapy? It seems that a background in chiropractic medicine would be well suited to the pursuit of physical therapy.

Nursing is a very, very tough job. I am a new nurse and, although I have been working since immediately after taking my boards, I am fully aware of how saturated the nursing market is right now. I am very grateful to be employed and was already working at the facility that took me on as a new grad. Many employers don't want to hire new grads because they are expensive to train and often leave the nursing profession altogether.

A work colleague told me that she put in more than 200 applications and only received 3 calls before eventually landing her first job. Her nursing school clinicals were her only healthcare experience until that point. So, are you willing to work as a nursing assistant to get your foot in the door? If so, your transition to employed nurse would likely be a lot easier. If not, I would suggest looking into another healthcare-related field, unless economic conditions change.

Nursing may be the only field that does not give weight to education and experience in other areas or industries for floor positions.

Good luck to you, whatever path you choose!

Thanks for the comments! I have considered physical therapy. It just seems exhausting to redo 3 years of school in something that is essentially really similar to what I do now. I contacted one pt school who said they could not shorten the program for me.

I am am going to keep thinking about it before I do anything drastic.

777RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Geriatrics, dementia, hospice. Has 6 years experience.

You're welcome!

However, here's some more food for thought.

In general, the salaries for PT are MUCH higher than registered nursing; i.e., they are more in line with mid-level practitioners, like NPs and PAs. Also, given your background in chiropractic and it's holistic approach, I am taking a wager (I'm from Vegas originally) that you are more inclined to prescribe/suggest natural modalities to your patients, rather than pharmaceuticals. Unfortunately, nursing has been reduced to little more than pushing pills in some settings (and is the aspect of the job I dislike the most). You won't have to deal with the administration of drugs as a therapist: whether physical, occupational, or speech-language.

While I realize that after finishing a 4-year-long professional program that having to do another 3 years may seem daunting, physical therapy, unlike nursing, is NOT saturated. Plus, your job prospects and salary would be much greater over the long run.

Also, working conditions for therapists are better: WAY more autonomy, still high but better workload, better hours for morning people (which I am not), and most weekends and holidays off (if that's important to you). As a nurse, especially in the beginning, you will likely work nights, holidays, and weekends, which is not for most people (though that's one aspect of nursing that I actually like. I like working when there are fewer administrators, vendors, physicians, and others around, because I have more time for patients!)

Good luck!

Edited by 777RN

Yeah you are right. I am definitely not one to recommend pharmaceuticals. PT definitely makes more sense. I just feel like a failure going through one incredibly expensive degree program to turn around and do another :(

777RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Geriatrics, dementia, hospice. Has 6 years experience.

Well, perhaps you can later do both PT and chiropractic medicine, or combine the two. Is that a possibility? You could also later teach chiropractic medicine and/or PT. It seems that the combination of the two would make you more marketable in that regard.

Yes I agree. Also I'm researching more about occupational therapy as well, and it seems really congruent with what I love about my current job. Problem is there is only one program in my state and it's an hour and a half away from us and my husbands job, but it could possibly work somehow if it's really something I want to pursue.