current nursing student... should I switch?


So let me begin with a little background.

I am just now finishing up my prerequisites for nursing school, which for those who aren't familiar, include several general social sciences and liberal arts as well as stats, bio sequences, microbio, gen chem, and anatomy and physiology.

I have always wanted to go into the healthcare field, and have been pretty set on nursing since high school. Mainly because I wasn't sure if I wanted to put myself through medical school and residency after witnessing my older brother dedicate his life (watch his life be consumed) by it. He is now a practicing ENT surgeon. I've also liked the thought of nursing because in general it seems as though you have much more patient contact/interaction than almost any doc.

I've been a nursing assistant for almost 2 years working first in long term care/skilled nursing and now in a busy hospital on a med/surg unit. Even given the extreme strenuous activity and bull ****-as well as literal ****-I have to deal with I still enjoy my job (most of the time.) I've also volunteered at one of the local children's hospitals on a school aged unit for about half a year and have loved it. I've also loved working with kids all of my life which has made me really want to go into pediatric nursing.


Given the experience I have had in health care settings I am still a little bit unsure if nursing is what I really want to do. Given that nursing school (BSN) has become so competitive I really am questioning my decision. It seems nursing school is just as competitive as some MD/DO programs. The heavy sciences are hard for me, but I can make the grades. My least favorite is chem, but I didn't really get myself into it.

Also, I am a fairly abstract thinker and apprehensive about the repetitive, task-oriented work of nurses. I want to have patient contact but I want it to be meaningful too. I have always had the thought of becoming a pediatrician in the back of my mind nagging at me. I don't want to root myself into nursing only to find that I really wanted to become a doctor. I guess I could always become a nurse practitioner if I really wanted to, but what do you think?

Any advice would be helpful.



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I think you have to decide what you would feel best doing. Technically, nursing school is going to consume just as much as your life for 2+ years as med school. Have you ever thought about going the PA route? I have a friend in PA school right now, it's a 22 month program, it's very intense, but worth it. I started (and finished) all of my pre-nursing classes right out of high school, when it was almost time to start applying to school, I got pregnant with my oldest kiddo. I realized I couldn't do nursing school pregnant, and then with a newborn, so I went into business. Two degrees later (bachelors and a masters) I have always felt so disinterested in anything but medicine. I have kind of been a floater, staying a year at one job, two at another, etc. Then I started working in a health office as an office coordinator and watching and talking with the nurses I realized where I was supposed to be! I applied to NS, got accepted and started on Monday!

Really, this is a decision that only you can make. If you go through nursing school and find that after working as a nurse you don't fill fulfilled, you can always go on to an advanced practice degree (nurse practitioner) or even apply to med school and explore the world of being a doctor. As a nurse, you could always work in pediatrics and if you find that you love peds so much that you want to go deeper, then apply to med school.

I guess what I'm trying to get at is that you always have time. I'm 26 and am just now starting nursing school. There are two ladies that are 53 that are just starting the program. There's a lady who lives where I do who started med school when she was 40.

Good luck with your decision!