emt first?

Nurses General Nursing


I am wanting to go to school to be a nurse, but I would like to start out by becoming a paramedic first. I just wanted to know if anyone had any suggestions about it and maybe could give me some pointers on the best way to go about it. Thanks so much. confused.gif

[This message has been edited by nannerbutt (edited December 31, 2000).]

No specific suggestions. If you read posts here, you realize that many nurses "climb the ladder" being something else first (CNA, CMA, LPN, UC, EMT/EMICT). Alot of this depends on your circumstances. If a nurse is what you want to be and nursing school is readily in your grasp, don't take the detour. Schooling is expensive, time consuming and exhausting and can leave you unready and unwilling to go on to more school. Some people take this circuitous route because they need/must have a way to earn money while they go on with their studies and they do benefit from the experiences they gain, but if nursing is your goal and affording and accessing the education is in your reach, go for it. Good luck and seek the solution that is best for you.

I was and am an EMT and I absolutely LOVE it. If I could make a living at it, I would probably not have gone to school for nursing. I am glad that I did choose to make nursing my career, as it is a completely different world and now I have the best of both worlds. If only I could find a way to put them both together and do both. Please don't suggest I do transfers because I do them and they are boring, it is not even close to being in the field.

There is something about EMS, you either love it or hate it, but you know the first call you go on. I was absolutly hooked, and still am. It is not easier or harder than nursing, just different.

The paramedic training takes considerable time and I would honestly consider doing a EMT basic course first, then work your way up if you feel the need. It would give you experience with patients, diseases and communicating with doctors. I found that my EMT experience served me well in nursing school, but it is always helpful to remember that they are two different worlds.

There are things I have learned from my EMT experience that no one that has not been in the field could possibly learn without having the experience. There are many more things I have learned being a RN that I could not ahve possibly understood as a EMT without the education I have recieved in nursing school. So, I am grateful for both and really like both. But I do have to warn you, if the EMS bug bites you, it bites hard and does not let go easily. But the same goes for nursing.

Whatever you decide, good luck.

Oh and by the way, there is much more to being an EMT than riding around in a ambulance.

[This message has been edited by JillR (edited January 02, 2001).]

I have a niece who is getting an EMT. For the money and time, she could be get an ADN in nursing and work for her bachelor's while nursing. I think she just likes to ride in ambulances.

Currently, I am taking two of my prereqs so that I can get into the ADN program this Fall 2001. I'm also taking the EMT-basic course this spring. The main reason is that would like to get a position in one of my local hospitals working in either the ER or on one of the wards as a ward secretary. I feel that I am taking my education in a step-by-step process. As I am my sole support, I've got to continue working while attending school and if I can get more exposure with an EMT education behind me, so be it.

Specializes in Med/Surg.

I have been an EMT for 1 year now but the pay is so lousy. I am not able to quit my current job (customer service) to get a job in EMS because I can't afford to. I work 3rd shift and go to school part time (pre-nursing) during the days so I don't have time to work a part-time EMT job, but I would love to...that is why I paid the money to take the course. In my area, I have applied for jobs as an ER Tech because I thought that an EMT would be a good qualification in the ER but apparently not....every job I have applied for, I have been declined because I don't have my CNA. Is having you CNA really that important in the ER? If anyone has any suggestions please feel free to post them. I really want to work in the medical field but can't afford to quit my current lousy job.

I first became an EMT in 1980, earning my paramedic in 1983. At that time the competition for jobs was intense and the pay was low. Guess what? In real terms (cost of living increases, etc) the pay is worse today. I usually received a great deal of satisfaction from the work, but the mental and physical stressors have become too much for me. Keep in mind that many if not most nurses work in their field for most of their working life. You see very few EMTs with more than about 10 years in the field. I'll be going to nursing school in the summer, and hope to be a nurse for a very long and productive time. BTW, JillR is spot on when she describes the feeling that EMS gives you. Anyway, maybe you CAN do both!

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