Getting a job with RN (already have BA from years ago)


I am returning to school for as a career changer (from unrelated field and staying home with children for 6 years), to earn a second bachelor's degree in Nursing- with a specialty in Psych Nursing. I originally considered Social work and took a grad class. But as a single mom of 3 young children (1 with Asperger's) and a part time job, the time and field work requirements seemed to be unrealistic. I have a BA in Psych from 1991 but no pscyh experience. I do work in a hospital now but as an administrative assistant.

My question is, is it worth getting an RN and then going the RN-BSN or RN- MSN route? OR is it quicker to complete more prerequisites and then apply to a BSN program? While working I'd finish the masters.

I've begun my prerequisites at a Community College and then considered going on for the RN at the community college and transferring to complete the BSN while hopefully working n. I am in the Boston area and work at a teaching hospital and was told it is really hard to get a job with just the RN, that most hospitals require the BSN. I'm trying to maximize my ability to work, earn more money and continue my nursing education- psychiatric reasearch is something I'd love to do also. I also don't want to be in school untl I'm 47 (I am 41 now)... it seems like a terribly long road. The accelerated programs are great but I've been discouraged by more than one advisor due to my hectic lifestyle and lack of help from the ex husband.

Given my ultimate goals, does going for the RN seem like a practical path? I know any career change - and into a demanding profession at that- takes time and I wish I thought of this when I was younger! I just am afraid I'm making illogical choices. Does anyone have experience with this issue and know whether a BSN program saves any time? Financially the community college is cheaper, and you need fewer prerequisites, but I want to be able to get a job so I can finish the degree! I hope this is clear- thanks for any input! Thanks! Aimee


73 Posts

After going back to school as an older person, and attaining my ADN, what a huge disappointment it was to find out new grads were no longer in demand. Now, after moving to another state to attain the "One year experience" there is the new BSN thing going on. I thank God, have been able to keep gainfully employed, but at the hospital I am now they look down their noses at anyone with an ADN, no matter how good you are, or how much you shine. I am working as a travel RN at the moment. I highly recommend not getting an ADN, bypass, go straight for BSN or MSN. Although, I will warn you, there are a ton of new grads with MSNs that had BSNs in other fields and went back to school d/t being unable to find jobs. Its kind of tough everywhere for a new grad, but do yourself a favor and get the BSN. That's my 2 cents, and my experience. Good luck.


7 Posts

I'm sorry it's been so tough for you, but I appreciate you sharing your experience. I was trying to take advantage of "articulation agreements" community colleges here have with the state (and some private) 4 year schools, meaning automatic acceptance upon completion of the AN degree. I thought it might save me a headache w/ the competition of acceptance, but learned, as you've experienced, some schools need one year working as an RN (in acute nursing no less) before acceptance into the BSN program, but then you can't find a job! And some of the 2 yr colleges are even tough to get into in the nursing dept. I live in Boston, so our teaching hospitals are Harvard/BU affiliated, so I imagine that has to do with this too. Highly competetive I've noticed...lots of adult's with 4 year degrees changing careers to nursing; or like you said, RN's trying to move up. Very confusing with all the options. I want Psych nursing, so I'm hoping the demand is a little higher than the other specialties but I'd doubt it...Thanks again- it's been tough getting a straight answer from anyone! Kind of discouraging and I wonder if it's worth it?