Can a nursing student and family survive on one income? - page 2

Hi to all, I'm new to the website and this is my first post. Lemme just say that I've been reading quite a few of the threads and you all are very encouraging, so thanks for all of the positive... Read More

  1. by   futurecnm
    most of my class works so it is definately do-able to do both work and college. They all recommend not working but most people can do both, it may be hard but worth it. I think you've gotten some good advice about saving and cutting back. Maybe you can get a part time NA job to help get experience.
  2. by   maryloufu
    I did not work during school. We lived in HUD housing, got food stamps, we got a surprise my last semester when I got pregnant with my baby- so we then were on Medicaid and WIC- still on medicaid for the baby and WIC. They cover a year after the baby is born. I am glad we did it or we would have been barely making it the rest of our lives.
  3. by   VIXEN007
    That must be nice. I am going to work during NS. I will ask for clinicals on nights and weekends and my day of no classes in order to make this work. I worked through college and through the pre-reqs, so I am used to being sleep-deprived. I want to come out of NS with as little debt as possible without sacrificing grades or quality.
  4. by   Sebastiansmom09
    Maryloufu I know what you mean about WIC and medicaid. I was a single mom some years ago and had my baby on medicaid and received WIC while I was pregnant. Unfortunately/fortunately (depending on how one wants to view it) we are not in a situtation where our state will consider us for medicaid or government assistance. Believe me I have no problem with eating humble pie... Hey EmilyUSFRN, can you check out Amazon and see if they have any recipe books for humble pie
  5. by   haley4
    Hi Sebastiansmom09 i worked while i was i nursing school. I started out working 12 hrs on sat & sun. Then I started to get burned out so I cut back to working 2 wknds a month. That worked for a while until I got prgnant and the Dr. took me out of work. So then I had to take out additional student loans to help make up for some of my income. It was hard but my husband and I managed to make it through and we had 3 kids prior to me getting pregnant. Oh and some small things I let go. I let my house phone go since my husband and I both had cell phones. so that was one bill gone. And idid let the cable go, but my husband couldn't live without it so we got that back. But it can be done, look at your budget and see what you really don't need. Cut what you can, then apply for some student loans, and grants. Then if you still r comin up short look for a part time job. alot of nursing homes will work with u as well as hospitals. Good Luck and congratulations on your acceptance
  6. by   Lorie P.
    yes, it can be done on one income, but with cut backs. to start with make sure to go to the fsfa student web site and apply for pell grants. loans etc. one area is when actually in school, i took my lunch and snacks everyday, cause vending machines get expensive and so does eating out. can get a 12 pack of coke for 2-3$'s verses .65 or 1.25 for one out of a machine!!
    we cut out things like the movies and instead rented a movie form the video store, bought popcorn at the dollar store and enjoyed a family night on sat nights.
    speaking of food, cut the bill in half by shopping at the dollar stores and only by what you will need and sale items at the local grocery store.
    in the end when you become a nurse it will be worth it. also try working only part time or weekends, this will help.
    another good thing is don't get so caught up in studying that you get burned out quickly. i would come home from class (5-6 hours daily) put my books away, spend time with my family. when they went to sleep around 9pm, i would then go lock myself in the computer room and study till midnight, each and every night, except sat nights, i figured i deserved at least one night off.
    good luck and remain positive!!
  7. by   EmilyUSFRN
    For financial aid, as others have said, you need to fill out your fafsa at it's government provided and the interest rates are really low. they provide the loans based on need after looking at different variables. there are deadlines, i think the fafsa application is due in june for the fall semester, so definitely check that out. they are deferred, so you won't be paying them back until graduation if you choose, but the interest does accrue during that time. through the fafsa site, they will then let you know if you qualify for pell grants, etc.
    also, just google nursing scholarships, go to which is a website that takes some criteria from you and will give you a list of scholarships on which you are eligible to apply for. apply for as many as you can, it's just money waiting to be given away.
    lastly, check with the office of financial aid at your school. i'm pretty positive that all schools have one-- from universities to trade schools-- and see what they have as far as financial aid goes. it's their job to help people fund their education, so everyone i've ever met has been pretty nonjudgmental and helpful.
  8. by   vampiregirl
    I used to run a group home and used to hire full time students to work the Friday and Saturday 3rd shifts. I was able to offer a 3rd shift differential as well as a weekend differential, so the people working these shifts ended up with a much higher pay rate. I also allowed students to study when all of the group home work was done (hey- the rest of my staff watched tv when everything was done- as long as my staff stayed awake and took care of the residents I was happy). Plus, no one else wanted to work these shifts. Also, when school breaks came around, they often would pick up extra hours. It worked out for everyone, and didn't interfere with the students school schedules. Group homes are always hiring (make sure you check out a group home first- there are some that are poorly managed and dangerous).

    I'm sure nursing homes or even jobs outside the medical field would love to have an employee willing to work part-time on Friday and Saturday nights. (I have a good friend who is a caseworker for the state who delivers pizza on Saturday nights to earn "fun" money).

    Good luck!
  9. by   ArwenEvenstar
    Hey! Just had to comment on this thread! Back in the early to mid 1990's me and my husband both made it through nursing school together with NO LOANS and living on only one part-time RN income and one prn/perdiem nurse's aid income. (I was already an Associate degree RN, but was working on my BSN full-time. My husband was a nurse aid getting his Associate degree RN.) We had no kids, so we did not have that expense. (I realize many have kids and that does change things...)

    BUT we were DETERMINED to do whatever it took to pay for school as we went, and have no loans AND no other debt either (no credit card debt, no car loan, etc.)
    And we did it!!!

    As some other posts mention, look for financial aid options. We did get a little financial aid. New York state (where we used to live) had a "TAP" program (a stipend) which we qualified for - it was not much but every little bit helps! I also got a small amount of tuition help from the hospital I worked at because I was getting my BSN.

    But the main way we did it was through FRUGAL LIVING. We were tight!!! We lived in a tiny, low rent apartment. We never, and I mean never, ate restaurant food. We always "brown bagged" it - took a simple lunch with us to school and work. Never bought snacks or drinks from vending machines. We cut everything from the budget that we could - we got rid of cable TV, cancelled magazine/newspaper subscriptions, did not go to the movie theatre, did not get nail manicures, etc. We did not spend a dime unless it was absolutely necessary. My parents helped in many little ways - like they let us do laundry at their house for free, so we did not have to pay at a laundromat (etc).

    "Be careful of small expenses, a small leak will sink a great ship." You can waste a lot of money without realizing it on LITTLE things. Ex: getting a $2.00 coffee 5 days a week equals $520.00 a year!! Imagine all the college text books you could buy with $520!!

    Okay - I am starting to "preach".... But it was great for both of us to finish our schooling loan free! It was great to suddenly have a two RN income, and also be starting with no debt or loans to pay back. The sacrifices were worth it to us.

    I realize everyone's situation is different though! Some people have kids and that adds expense. Some people don't have a supportive and helpful family like we did. Some people may not want to be so frugal and just get a loan instead. (That is fine! Different strokes for different folks!) But with the right circumstances and determination, a lot is possible!
  10. by   Sebastiansmom09
    Hi everyone I just wanted to update with everybody. I started this thread with so much uncertainty about my future in NS. My husband would say things like, "I don't know how we're going to do it with basically one income and all..." Then one day he came to me and said, "I know we can do it. God has given you this opportunity, and who am I to doubt it?" So, now here I am in my second semester of nusing school, I am part time at my same corporate job , and we are not eating the Ramen noodle diet! Yippee!!

    I just wanted to say thanks to everyone on this site, who've given me such positive feed back. Be blessed!!
    Last edit by Sebastiansmom09 on Jan 29, '08