nursing student and CNA job?

  1. I'm about to start nursing school in May and just received my CNA license. I wanted to hear from those of you who are nursing students and work a job as a CNA. How do you handle it? Is it possible?
    Definitely do want to work during nursing school and i think this is the prefect opportunity to get my foot in the door for the future.
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    About ndg37

    Joined: Sep '12; Posts: 3


  3. by   Ceeza
    Yea i would like to hear what you guys have to say. Im in the same situation starting in April.
  4. by   bTRUE
    Before I was accepted to nursing school I also worked as a CNA , but had to go per diem instead of part time bc I didn't want to commit to hours every week. Per diem allowed me to schedule my work schedule around my class, test and clinical schedules. Because I had experience in healthcare already , my clinicals were much smoother and free of anxiety as compared to the other nursing students . I say go for it! But only if it's per diem !
  5. by   RunnerRN2015
    I work as a CNA as well as several of my classmates. Some of us are PRN (like me), some work part-time and others (out of necessity) work full-time. I love the flexibility of PRN (minimum requirement is two 12-hr shifts every 6 weeks)! I look over my school calendar and can plan my shifts around exams, clinicals, etc. Granted, I'm not getting near the experience that my full-time friends are getting but at least I have my foot in the door with the hospital system...and that's a HUGE deal around here.
  6. by   irisheyesRsmilin
    I am a first semster nursing student ( AN program at highly rated competitive community college) and last year when I had a semester off from pre reqs, I took CNA course. I was hired directly out of clinicals at the facility we were at and loved it.
    In my clinical group of 8 there are 2 of us working as CNA's and both her and I knock it out of the park when it coms to clinicals. We have no fear of dealing with the pts. Definate advantage.
    I work only 2 shifts a week, Sat and Sundays and that is plenty in my opinion and going to school full time. ( I am at a LTC facility) My nurses know I am a RN student and often pull me in to watch procedures like foleys, GI tubes ect. I have learned ALOT from working in the field.
    The foot int he door is a BIG Deal like the above poster said. I have a job waiting for me next year as LPN and then following year as an RN. Right here in the facility I am already at and love. The experience on your resume looks great as well. Good luck!
  7. by   katiescow
    Great idea especially for the experience and like you said a way to get your foot in the door! HOWEVER..the hours working will cut away from your studying and that may not sound like a big deal, BUT in nursing school your gonna need extra time to study. I'm doing PRN and loving it. School and only working weekends go to be too much and I was considering having to quite to focus on school. But since I can work when they need me and if it fits in my schedule it's great. & most facilities will be happy to promote someone already familiar with their systems then have to go through the interview process, new hire, and paperwork headaches
  8. by   proudcna
    I'm working part time at night as a CNA and i'm also in nursing school.. I don't really think its a big deal as long as you are 100% committed to your studies. It is definitely possible! Good luck, and congratulations
  9. by   Best_Name_Ever
    I work PRN. I am scheduled every other weekend. Then after I look at my school schedule, I pick up shifts around my exams, project deadlines, etc. i just make sure i give myself enough study time. At the beginning, I stuck to just my weekend until I figured out the whole time management thing. Now, I graduate in December with my BSN and typically schedule myself as a .6
  10. by   chrisc-40
    I'm scheduled to start my first clinical in the Fall. After asking RNs I meet on a regular basis through home care they all tell me it is very difficult to work while doing the clinicals. Although some have said the first clinical is the easiest and working may be possible.If you can get away with not working I would certainly concentrate just on the clinicals.......
  11. by   boogalina
    I'm in a 2-year ADN program - have worked 36-hour weeks (12 hour shifts) up until the current term (5 of 6). I now work 24 hours per week, which is plenty during this very demanding term. Our school does 12- hour clinical shifts, 1 day a week.

    If your employer is not EXTREMELY flexible about scheduling, don't attempt this. Even with flexible scheduling, it is very hard. I'll be glad to be done soon, although grateful for experience as a CNA in an ICU.
  12. by   Dcmom
    boogalina, did you had to get the certification before working as cna?
  13. by   Philly_LPN_Girl
    I quit my cna job before starting nursing school so I cant tell you much BUT, majority nursing schools tell you not to work over 16hrs a week if you are able to. One girl in my class work just on weekens working 8-16 hr shifts and another girl works 10-20 hrs just on weekends. Only 2 older people in my class work full time as cnas and 1 of them says she could barely do it and is soo tired going to school part time and working full time as well as having to study.
  14. by   WannaBNursey
    I attempted to work full time nights at a nursing home at the beginning of nursing school and I failed miserably. I cut down to PRN and then just quit the nursing home all together. I went back to home health and eventually got hired at a hospital where I work 1 day a week on the weekends. I know other students who work full time at the hospital for 3 days a week and go to school full time as well and I honestly don't know how they do it. Yes, I think it is beneficial to work as a CNA before getting into a nursing program considering that most of the work at clinicals is CNA work. Work as a CNA will also give you a greater appreciation for your CNA's when you become a nurse. I feel that most nurses don't really understand all that a CNA does if they haven't previously been a CNA.

    Good luck to you! Try to get a CNA job in a hospital. They usually give more responsibility to CNA's in the hospital. Before I worked at the hospital I barely knew how to do accuchecks, and I've since learned how to D/C IV's and foleys.