How do you do it?

Students General Students


Hi all,

I'm a pre-nursing student, starting school in July. Right now, I'm taking A&P 2 in summer session 1. I'm one of those students that HAS to ifs, ands, buts about it.

With me in A&P 2 every day except Friday and working full-time, I'm getting a little taste of how it will be in nursing school..and I'm not liking it! I am SOO tired! Luckily, I'll only be taking nursing courses since my sciences will all be basically done (I can take my last one - microbiology - next summer). And I heard the 1st semester isn't too bad.

But, I'm so tired now and barely have time to study. We do 1 chapter a lecture day (2 a week) but 2 days of lab..but I know we'll be going through more chapters during the week in nursing school. Also, nursing school classes will be longer.

Luckily, I'll be working a per diem job (as a substitute teacher) so if I don't feel like going into work..or need extra study time, I can take a day off and not have to worry about telling a boss. But, that's 1 day less of pay. I also babysit now and will continue to do so..and possibly pick up a weekends/nights job.

I have no choice so please don't say "work less hours - school is more important", etc. I know school is important..but having a place to live, eating and a car is equally, if not more, important. Please let me know how you balance everything..and most important, squeeze more hours in the day!


254 Posts

I don't really have any advice. I am lucky, in the fact that I don't have to work while in school. I did take a few student loans out.

Nursing school, for me, has been soooo much harder than all of my pre-reqs. I mean, for our first test, there was 27 chapters to read. Really. Maybe you could try to get a roomate, if that is an option. Cut out on stuff you dont NEED, like cable, going out (like you'll have time for it anyways), hair salons, shopping. Maybe even consider taking out a small student loan so you don't have to work as much.

Whatever you do, I wish you luck.


908 Posts

Specializes in CTICU/CVICU.

Thanks! I don't know what my financial aid package will look like..but once I see hopefully be enough for school. But, then again..I'll still have my bills and such. But, then again..if I can cut as many costs as possible..I should be able to not work 1 days. To get more time to study.



17 Posts

You just do it. Everyone has a system that works for them. What's important for me to keep up with in my daily life during school is not important to another person.

You have to be flexible with your schedule, for sure.

You'll jump in and figure out what works best for you. Good luck! :yeah:

9livesRN, BSN, RN

1,570 Posts

Specializes in SNU/SNF/MedSurg, SPCU Ortho/Neuro/Spine.

yo... suck it up!!! be strong!!! push your self!!!

I am on the same page as you are, I have done what you are doing now for more then 1 year!!! i feel your pain!!! but you are just going to prove to yourself that you can do it!!!

I work full time, here it is 1140pm and i am at work and have medsurge clinicals tomorrow, ob on saturday, I work sunday, have medsurge test on monday, lab on tuesday ob test on wednesday (work 3 - 12:30 am from sunday through thursday!!!)

you are not alone, and no body will understand what you are going trough, nor they will feel sory for you!!!

so tighten your seat belt, Praise to God, and you are in for a crazy ride!!!

it will be worth in the end, plus this is only the begining of a briliant career in front of you!!!

pet your self in the back, give yourself compliments because you can do it!!!

and we can help!


21 Posts

I'm getting ready to graduate in 4 weeks and I still feel like it's a huge juggling act! I found for me schedules worked really well, I scheduled study time and everything in between. Nursing school takes a lot of time and immense dedication because of the demands not only of the program but life. Cutting out all the extras is what got me through financially. I went out to eat twice a month, got my hair done like 4 times in the last 2 years and I kept my eyes open for cheap entertainment when I actually had/have the time to so something else besides study. My whole life changed when I started the program, everything was centered around school first. The demands of clinicals, lab, classroom hours, work, kids and everything else can be overwhelming but you just do it, you suck it up and keep your eye on the prize. I'm almost done and looking back on all work it's so worth it. Find a routine that works for you and go with it and take it as it comes. Good luck and congrats on making it this far:up:

Specializes in Operating Room, Long Term Care.

I had to quit working when I started school full-time. Core nursing classes are a lot more harder than the pre-reqs, but if you want it bad enough you will come up with a schedule that works for you. While in clinicals three days a week I was up by 4:00 am, got out of clinicals at 2:30, pick up my kids, made supper and then prepared care plans until about 11:00 pm and that's not counting my classes during the week and all the reading and studying for them. I left my reading and assignments for weekends. Good luck it will work out.

polka-dot, RN

1 Article; 375 Posts

Specializes in ICU.

We're in class/clinical almost 30 hours a week. Not sure how anybody works with a schedule like that. Good luck!


411 Posts

We're in the same boat. Last semester I worked full-time and took A&P 2 and an algebra class. It was really tough. Going to work (I'm a nursing assistant) would reinforce why I was going to school in the first place and why it was so important to make good grades. I also have a few co-workers who work full-time and are going to school for nursing, so it's encouraging to talk to them and see how they balance things.

It's really important to manage your time. I always write a schedule of what I'm going to study that day and for how long. Also writing down a budget and sticking to it is extremely beneficial.

I'm going to be working my behind off this summer so I can pay for books, uniforms, etc. as well as have an emergency fund set up since I won't be able to work extra hours in the fall.

Just remember that you're not alone and you can make it!

Specializes in Critical Care.

You can do it! I always hate it when instructors tell you you should not work after reading off a list of 1,000 dollars in supplies for their class haha.

Just remember there are a lot of students who don't have to work and waste their free time going out, watching tv, etc. I have seen students that go out on weekends to the bar and waste the next day on a hangover. Frankly I don't know how THEY do it!

Working is important, you do not want a bunch of loans out in this economy. Your plan sounds perfect with the per diem. I work as a nanny and have very flexible hours. It totally depends on the job stress, hours, pay, etc that should determine if it is worth it to keep working.

Good Luck!

Specializes in LTC.

I'm sorry but working full time mad me have stress, anxiety, and really made me depressed. I did it for about 9 months until I've decided to go part-time. Now able to go part time and use my sick days so my pay stayed the same. However, I'll be leaving my job to focus more on nursing school. I'm sorry but they can take my car, drop my insurance, and etc. but nothing and I mean nothing will stop me from pursing my dream. Now I'm lucky to live with my cousin where she's letting me stay here for little rent and I also have a very supportive fiance so if my car did get repoed I can use his car. So I'm very blessed to have a supportive family. But before he came and before I stayed with my cousin I did experience being homeless and its not fun but I still kept school my focus.

You do what you have to do. If you have to work full time while in NS then so be it. If not you may have to start catching buses, going to a food bank, and just struggling while getting your nursing license.

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