Journalism Degree to Nursing


Hey y’all,

So right now I’m working as a journalist but I’ve always been interested in the medical field and due to everything I’ve been in and out of hospitals and I want to do it even more now. By the time I realized it I was about to graduate college. I’m now two years out and what I do isn’t what I want to do for the rest of my life and I want to make a change. I’ve read that I could go back to school and do some of the prerequisites I didn’t do during my undergrad and bring my GPA while doing that then apply to nursing schools. I’m worried since my major wasn’t science based it’s going to take me forever. Would you say doing those classes while working full time still at my current job would work? We have a few universities and a technical college where I’m at. I also spent a lot on my undergrad degree so I’m not sure how much help in financial aid I have left so I may I have to come out of savings for this too. Anyone else make the career change if so what is the smart way to go about it?

Enarra, BSN, RN

146 Posts

Specializes in Ambulatory Primary Care. Has 11 years experience.

I would go the route of Community college get associates degree in nursing in 2 yrs, pass state boards and start working as nurse then finish up BSN online at state school. Math and science classes expire so check your states rules. Also if you didn’t do so good in it round one maybe consider retaking prerequisites. Most students worked PT while in nursing school (clinical phase) as in accepted into nursing program. Good luck!


26 Posts

Hi ralewis,

I'm in a similar situation in wanting to shift careers into nursing. I have a B.M. in Music Performance and M.A. in Arts Administration. As someone who works full-time, I knew that this shift would be gradual at first (currently taking prerequisites at my local community college). I've posted a similar question on this forum relating to an ADN, ABSN, and Direct-entry MSN and have gotten plenty of constructive feedback. Ultimately, there isn't a right or wrong answer into making this change. You have to weight your personal finances, your potential career nursing goals, time, and commitment. Here are my thoughts towards the levels of education routes:

-ADN: I've gone back in forth about going the ADN or Direct-entry route. The advantage of the ADN is that it'll be much cheaper ($15k-$20k) versus the ABSN/Direct-entry route ($30k-$60k). Another benefit of this path is that employers may help you with tuition reimbursement into getting your BSN or MSN. However, if I want to be an NP one day, it'll take an additional 4-6 years of school to get there while working full-time as a nurse. Having two degrees already, this doesn't seem like the most efficient path.

- ABSN: I don't have much Chemistry background and many of these programs require at least 4-8 credits of advanced Chemistry.

- Direct-entry MSN: Many of these programs are two years (same amount of time as ADN and ABSN) and costs are similar to ABSN. Prerequisite requirements are also smaller compared to ABSN. For me, this is the option I'm working towards because it allows for me to get a higher level degree in the same amount of time and similar costs to getting a BSN. I would rather spend 2 years full-time getting a higher degree.

While I'm a work in progress in making this transition, the biggest question that I'm asking myself is how do I know that nursing is the right path for me? While I love the idea of nursing and have figured out a roadmap to getting there, having some sort of experience in the medical field will shed light on whether this is the right career for me. I'm considering enrolling in a CNA program to get a hands on experience. While I'll likely make less money then what I currently make, having this experience would be eyeopening for me. I've found CNA programs to be between $500-$1,000 depending on the area. I would rather spend this money and be 100% sure that nursing is right for me versus dropping thousands of dollars on a nursing degree that I may eventually drop out of. I've also considered shadowing other nurses, but with COVID-19, it may be extremely difficult to get into a hospital setting now.

I hope this helps. This has been based off my own research and thought process. Switching careers isn't easy but the education in nursing seems to welcome many different backgrounds.

Best of luck!


98 Posts

Has <1 years experience.

I'm in the same boat as you are. I have a degree in business and unable to find a job that fits my degree. I would not go to the absn route because the courseload is heavy and costs alot of money.