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Job That Lasts the Many Years of Nursing School I Have Ahead

Specializes in Operating Rooom.

I've just completed my CNA certification and I am looking for a job that can hopefully last me all through nursing school.

I've been accepted to an LPN program at North Shore Community College (Boston MA area) that starts this fall. I have chosen this route because I want to be able to work through all of my schooling. I hope to just keep bridging (LPN to RN, then RN to BSN) this way I can work part time. I already have all of the prerequisites for the LPN and RN and a lot of the bachelor requirements because I have another BS. So I hope I'll still get a fair amount of working in along the way!

Any advice on types of jobs would be great! Or if you know of anywhere that would be flexible with a school schedule. Or if anyone's from the area any specific places to work. :)

HouTx, BSN, MSN, EdD

Specializes in Critical Care, Education.

Hi there. Sorry you haven't gotten a response yet.

I think it's admirable that you're planning ahead. However, there is an issue that you may not have considered. Each time your qualifications change, you will have to change jobs because your job is not automatically upgraded (e.g., CNA to LPN to RN) when you are. Employers have a certain number of jobs as part of their labor management systems - and there may not be a suitable opening for you when you're ready for it.

Even if you're willing to do so, your Nurse Practice Act probably will not let you work in an unlicensed role once you become licensed.... because no matter what the job title is, you'd be expected to function within your scope of license. This is a regulatory nightmare for employers, so they don't let this happen either.

Many employers have 'nurse tech' positions that are available for nursing students who have completed their first clinical semester. These jobs are usually flexible because they are meant for students. But once you have a license, you'll have to upgrade to a nursing job.

Hi! I don't know what the job market is like where you are, but where I live, LPNs are really only hired in long-term care facilities. This could still be a great experience for you, and if you're interested in staying at the same facility...you might be able to transition from CNA, to LPN, and eventually to RN within the facility. Your role and scope of practice would change each step of the way (possibly, I know some LTC facilities have the same role for LPNs and RNs), and by the time you finish school with your BSN, you would already have some nursing experience. You could transition to a management role in the facility or move on to other opportunities. That's really the only option I can think of with the plan you have.

However, I would recommend just going straight for the RN (associates or BSN program), since that is your long term goal. You could work as a nurse tech, student nurse or CNA the entire time. Or since you already have a bachelor's degree, why not go the accelerated BSN route? I believe that takes about 2 years. You might not have as much time with this type of program, but you could possibly work PRN or during the summer as a student nurse.

I'm only a nursing student as of now but I know several people in my area (another part of New England) who have worked as CNA's in nursing homes and then transitioned to the LPN role, often in the same facility. At least around here, CNA's are in high demand and I think you'd have a better chance of being hired as an LPN down the line if you've been working as a CNA. Like the previous poster mentioned, I mainly hear of LPN's working in nursing homes around here, and those that I know seem to have a lot of responsibility! It seems like a great way to work your way through school.


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