Navy Hospital Corpsman to RN?

  1. I am a Hospital Corpsman who has served in the military for about 2.5 years. Because of my location and 10 hour days, i cant quite make it to classes on any basis.

    I have almost no idea where to start to aqcuire an RN license. The RN world alone is new to me but i have seen the responsibilities an RN can carry.

    Questions:

    Is there an online program that caters to acquiring a ADN? I have looked through several posts and cannot find a solid answer.

    As a Hospital Corpsman we can obtain a Medical Assistant or challenge the LVN board to become that. Are any of these worthwhile to getting closer to becoming an RN.

    Right now my plan is to just take online courses to try and knock out the bulk of the prerequisites to become an RN so when i am a civilian i wont be at square one. I googled nursing degrees and could not find the core classes required to become an RN. Where is this information readily available?

    I go to the university of phoenix and my counselor is no help to me.

    I appreciate any help
    Thank you.
  2. Visit JLhn profile page

    About JLhn

    Joined: Apr '07; Posts: 2

    28 Comments

  3. by   robred
    Quote from JLhn
    I am a Hospital Corpsman who has served in the military for about 2.5 years. Because of my location and 10 hour days, i cant quite make it to classes on any basis.

    I have almost no idea where to start to aqcuire an RN license. The RN world alone is new to me but i have seen the responsibilities an RN can carry.

    Questions:

    Is there an online program that caters to acquiring a ADN? I have looked through several posts and cannot find a solid answer.

    As a Hospital Corpsman we can obtain a Medical Assistant or challenge the LVN board to become that. Are any of these worthwhile to getting closer to becoming an RN.

    Right now my plan is to just take online courses to try and knock out the bulk of the prerequisites to become an RN so when i am a civilian i wont be at square one. I googled nursing degrees and could not find the core classes required to become an RN. Where is this information readily available?

    I go to the university of phoenix and my counselor is no help to me.

    I appreciate any help
    Thank you.
    Yes, you r in luck...there is an NLN accredited college called Excelsior.
    Go to www.excelsior.edu
    And thanks for your service!!!

    J.
  4. by   TiffyRN
    Read up on Excelsior. Some have their issues with it. I am not one of those. However; there are some states that will no longer recognize it as a valid school. There is extensive information on this on this board under "Distance Learning".
  5. by   anne74
    Each school has different pre-requisite requirements - which makes it hard to know what to take. You almost have to know what school you're going to, to know what pre-reqs you need. And even then, you may not get in - many nursing schools now have long waiting lists, and are very competitive to get in. Make sure you get the highest grades possible to increase your chances.

    Anyway, I don't know about the pre-reqs for an ADN - I only know the pre-reqs for a BSN - these include classes like Biology, Microbiology, Anatomy, Physiology, Psychology, Sociology, Lifespan Development, and sometimes Chemisty, Nutrition, Statistics, and Algebra. Again, each school is different and wants different classes. I would start looking at schools online and read what their requirements are. Maybe even meet with an academic counselor to help you map out your classes.

    Becoming a medical assistant is nice to be introduced into a clinical setting, but it doesn't help you with getting into nursing school or becoming a nurse. To become a nurse you have to graduate from an accredited program and then pass the NCLEX exam (state board).

    One option might be to become an LPN (usually a year in school), start working, and then take the remaining classes to get your ADN or BSN. With your ADN or BSN, then you can take the NCLEX exam and become an RN.

    Good luck.

    By the way - what's a Hospital Corpsman?
  6. by   TazziRN
    What state are you in? In CA corpsmen and medics can challenge the LVN boards and from there take just the last year of an ADN program.
  7. by   paganoid
    Quote from TazziRN
    What state are you in? In CA corpsmen and medics can challenge the LVN boards and from there take just the last year of an ADN program.
    If you take your discharge at Treasure Island you can enroll at California State University East Bay in Concord, California. Your recent military discharge will move you to the head of the list for enrollment, provided you have completed the following prerequisite courses:

    Anatomy
    Physiology
    Chemistry
    Microbiology
    Sociology or Cultural Anthropology
    Freshman English
    Statistics and Probability (NOT Business Stats)
    Critical Thinking (English or Philosophy)
    Speech (Fundamentals and/or Interpersonal Communications)

    You also have to qualify for admission to the University. You can check them out at:

    http://www.csueastbay.edu

    Type in "Nursing" in the search box. Hope this helps.

    Cheers!

    PS: If you don't have these classes, you can take them at several local junior colleges or at the University starting in the Fall of 2007. Good luck!
  8. by   TiffyRN
    Quote from TazziRN
    What state are you in? In CA corpsmen and medics can challenge the LVN boards and from there take just the last year of an ADN program.
    Or, if you aren't in CA (because CA is allowing virtually no Excelsior grads to get new licenses), then you can skip challenging LVN boards, and just do the Excelsior courses which will fit much better in your schedule. Now it's very tough to self-discipline, most people I know enrolled in Excelsior have done little more than enroll, but some I know have gone through all their clinical courses in less than a year.

    Now, since you referred to it as "LVN" I'd say likely you are in CA since very few states use this term as opposed to LPN. In which case I would look to take the route Tazzi suggested but that will require full-time study for at least a year after challenging and passing LVN. Or, you could move. . . California is beautiful though. . .
  9. by   JLhn
    Thank you all so much, i was shocked with the amount of helpful responses in such a short period of time. Excelsior sounds perfect for my current situation but i do live and plan to live in California.

    I am now looking into challenging the LVN board, it seems to be the most obtainable thing.

    Is there any form of distance education that california will recognize?
  10. by   zenman
    I was an ARMY corpsman and we were able to take LPN/LVN boards. Just applied like any LPN/LVN student. I also challenged CA RN state boards and passed. I guess you can tell this was long ago! I then went the Excelsior route for the BSN and went on to obtain two masters...one in nursing.

    I would think you could at least knock out a lot of courses via online.
  11. by   Shamira Aizza
    Former Navy Corpsman here, now an RN.

    You can take many of the pre-requisites on-line. I will reserve my opinion regarding RN correspondence nursing.

    You can also use your military experience and training for transfer credit; for example, I transferred 4 credits in Human Anatomy/Physiology, credits in Nursing (sorry, I can't remember how many), and 4 credits Phys. Ed. The number of credits equaled to about one semester worth of education...and saved me a bit of cash.

    Or you can apply for one of the Navy Enlisted RN programs...I can't remember the names of the programs, but several shipmates went into a program where the Navy paid for a BSN program, paid them an O-1 stipend, and commissioned them after graduation.
  12. by   paganoid
    Quote from JLhn
    Thank you all so much, i was shocked with the amount of helpful responses in such a short period of time. Excelsior sounds perfect for my current situation but i do live and plan to live in California.

    I am now looking into challenging the LVN board, it seems to be the most obtainable thing.

    Is there any form of distance education that california will recognize?
    If you are on shore you can sign up for pre-req classes at any California community college that offers "distance learning" courses in the non-science prerequisite classes like anthro, english, and statistics. Santa Barbara City College offers a full menu of strictly online classes as does Diablo Valley College in the Bay Area. I took Statistics online last summer and it was really tough but only took 8 weeks to complete and was fully online except for the exams which were face to face encounters on campus. (yes, that might not work for you.)

    I was a Hospital Corpsman (8482-Pharmacy Tech) in USS Coral Sea long ago and finally came back to Nursing after many years as a physician's private secretary. If you have additional questions you can message me if you want.

    Good Luck!
  13. by   Daytonite
    i worked in a va hospital for 5 years. i can't tell you how many nurses in the va system started out as corpsmen! the recruiters for the military service in which you serve should be able to help you. ask them which states are "friendly" to giving lpns to discharged corpsmen. some of the officers you work with may have some opinions on this as well. getting lpn licensing is done by what is called educational equivalency. you would still have to take the nclex-pn exam, but you would be requesting a state to consider your military corpsman training to be equivalent to a lpn program of study. many states have policies in place to allow for this. i usually find them in the instructions for completing the application to take the nclex-pn exam on the specific state board websites when i search for this kind of information. the only problem you might have is the ob part of the nclex-pn if you didn't get this training or didn't work with a female population. here is a link that might help in preparing for the nclex-pn http://www.brooksidepress.org/produc...obgyn/home.htm.

    i worked for a va hospital for 5 years. there were many former corpsmen working there in various capacities. some had gone on to become lpns or rns. the gi bill should help you with tuition. if you can get your lpn you will find that many employers have tuition reimbursement as an employee benefit. once you get your lpn, you look for an lpn to rn bridge program at a community college or university nursing program. good luck to you!

    here is a website that has lots of information about nursing and how to become a nurse: http://www.discovernursing.com/
    also, keep in mind that going back to school means you are going to become a college student so you need to become educated in how being a college student works. each state board of nursing officially approves the nursing schools that are allowed to operate in their states. most of them publish this official list on their websites. that is where you start to look for a school. you then go to the school's website for specific information on admission requirements and so forth. a college's division of nursing will often have specific rules about applying to be in the nursing program of study which you must follow. happy reading!
  14. by   Daytonite
    oops! didn't see that part you posted about california. i just happen to have a boatload of stuff about nursing schools in california since i happen to live here. lucky you! the community college tuition is only $20 a credit hour at the moment and a typical class is about 3 or 4 credit hours a semester ($60-$80 a class) which is a real bargain! many of the community colleges have lvn to rn bridge program and i'm hearing that a lot of them are going to a lottery system rather than sticking with a waiting list for entrance into their nursing programs.

    here's some websites you need to check out that are specific for people who want to be nurses in california:

    http://www.nurse.ca.gov/ - california nurse outreach. the governors nurse education initiative home page. information here on how to become a nurse.

    http://www.choosenursing.com/paying/calfinaid.html - financial aid available for nursing students in california

    http://www.rn.ca.gov/schools/rnprgms.htm - list of rn programs in california from the california board of nursing

    http://www.bvnpt.ca.gov/vnschl.htm - list of lvn programs in california from the california board of vocational nursing and psychiatric technicians

    lucky you! california board of vocational nursing and psychiatric technicians has a special protocol for military corpsmen who seek lvn licensing (that's the equivalent of an lpn license). here is a link to the information: http://www.bvnpt.ca.gov/pdf/method4.pdf. check out page #3 and #6 of this document where it tells you specifically what to do if you are a military applicant (that would be you). good luck! california has many fine schools of nursing. i've worked in other states and got my bsn in another state although i did my basic rn nursing course here in california. california is often on the cutting edge of what is going on in healthcare.

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