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just finished my BSN..... my story, if anyone is interested....

Western Governors   (8,580 Views | 29 Replies)

msa9179 has 7 years experience and specializes in critical care.

4,488 Profile Views; 69 Posts

I finished my RN to BSN program at WGU this week! WGU was not necessarily my first choice when I started, but it turned out to be great. Due to medical complications in my immediate family, I have maintained 2 full-time nursing jobs (12 hour night shifts, 6-7 nights per week, usually 7 nights per week) in order to support my wife and the kids (3 and 5), along with my mother-in-law who lives with us to take care of my wife and the kids while I work non-stop. I did not really see how I was going to manage to do a BSN program with that kind of work schedule. I even started a program at a different school that had a more traditional online setup, with deadlines for assignments and whatnot. I couldn't hold it together with that program, as the deadlines were just eating me up. So, I moved to WGU, knowing it would be more self-paced. Looking back now, I don't think I could have made the BSN without WGU. One of my jobs is in an ICU, so that keeps me plenty busy 3-4 nights a week. My second job is home health, where I am at the bedside of a single patient for 12-hour shifts. The family of the patient has been very liberal with me in allowing me to do homework and stuff while on the job during downtime, as I have always made sure to take really good care of their son. Since I spend most of those nights sitting at his bedside, doing the occasional tube feed or nebulizer treatment, or "cleanup," I have lots of down time. I did the vast majority of my school work on my laptop at that job. Some weeks I was really busy and didn't get much school work done. Other weeks were smooth, and I banged out papers pretty fast. The only hitch was the community health practicum, which requires 90 hours of work out in the community. So, I had to dip into my vacation time at the hospital and take time off to get this done. Otherwise, I was able to work the entirety of the coursework for the whole program around my schedule, at my convenience, and according to my own self-set deadlines.

I found the program to be both challenging and academically appropriate, but also reasonable and doable. As they advertise, I was able to breeze through some areas where I already had a good working knowledge, while some areas required pretty extensive research and work. The program took me a year and a half (3 of their 6-month terms). I could have done it a lot faster if not for my complicated personal life and endless work schedule. But, WGU provided me with the type of school program that worked for me in my unique situation, and allowed me to further my education.

I guess the moral of the story is that, if I can do it, anybody can do it!

So, I will be happy to answer any questions about WGU and my experience if it will be of assistance to others.

This degree represents a major accomplishment to me personally, not just getting the degree, but also the personal and professional hurdles I had to clear to get it done. Sorry, I know that is sappy and dramatic.

Anyway, thanks for listening. Again, let me know if I can help in any way on answering WGU questions.

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Ericad85 specializes in CNA, MA.

175 Posts; 5,674 Profile Views

Congratualtions !!!! I start in Dec and really looking forward to it!!! I hope I am successful just like you :)

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777RN has 6 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Geriatrics, dementia, hospice.

295 Posts; 11,402 Profile Views

Kudos! Congratulations! Very happy for you! :)

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TheCommuter has 14 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych.

4 Followers; 226 Articles; 27,607 Posts; 321,269 Profile Views

Congratulations to you for a job wonderfully done! I am loving WGU! :)

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55 Posts; 1,268 Profile Views

Good for you! Your family must be so proud! Way to go!

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klone has 14 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in Women's Health/OB Leadership.

6 Followers; 13,573 Posts; 119,346 Profile Views

Wow, that's impressive. Any hope that you will be able to cut back your hours at some point in the near future?

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CrunchRN has 25 years experience as a ADN, RN and specializes in Clinical Research, Outpt Women's Health.

1 Follower; 4,213 Posts; 30,735 Profile Views

You the man. May I ask the cost for your full program?

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TheCommuter has 14 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych.

4 Followers; 226 Articles; 27,607 Posts; 321,269 Profile Views

You the man. May I ask the cost for your full program?
He says he completed the program in approximately three six-month terms, which would cost about $10,000 total at WGU.

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msa9179 has 7 years experience and specializes in critical care.

69 Posts; 4,488 Profile Views

Yeah, the program costs something like $3,250 per 6 month term, if I remember correctly, plus a few startup fees and things (that were not excessive), so I think my total came in the neighborhood of $10K, which I think is quite competitive as far as tuition goes for a RN-BSN program. Also, again, since it is self-paced, you can finish in a shorter time and pay for fewer terms. There are apparently, in some rare cases, people who have advertised to have finished in six months. So, I guess those folks would have only paid less than $4k for the whole degree!

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msa9179 has 7 years experience and specializes in critical care.

69 Posts; 4,488 Profile Views

Wow, that's impressive. Any hope that you will be able to cut back your hours at some point in the near future?

Well, probably won't be able to cut back anytime really soon, but I suppose it will come eventually. It is unclear when (or if) my wife, who is also a nurse, will ever work again. She had a major brain surgery at age 30 in 2012, followed closely by a pretty severe stroke while recovering, and then another major brain surgery about 2 months ago. This all left her both physically and cognitively disabled. She had a chiari malformation, if anyone is familiar with that. At the time of the first surgery and stroke in 2012, she was 30 and I was 32, and one of our kids was 2 years old, and the other was only 4 months old. Her mom dropped her job, apartment, independence, etc to move in with us and take care of her and the kids so I could work. Otherwise, don't know what we would have done. Meanwhile, I certainly feel quite blessed to have been working in a profession where I have been able to work in 2 full-time jobs the way I have (full time RN salary times 2!).

I am thinking pretty seriously about jumping right into the WGU MSN program and continuing on the way I have been doing. So, maybe with time, promotion at work, etc, I will get to cut back some. But, in the meantime, we feel very blessed to have held it all together and for me to be able to continue further my education and career!

thanks everyone for all the kind words and support. I don't post much on allnurses, but I am always on here reading for information and motivation. This has been a great support community for me!

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5 Posts; 578 Profile Views

Congratulations!

My question for you is......do you suggest WGU to someone that does not have their license at all? I've been looking for a program that would allow me to work and go to school. I'm currently waiting to hear back from Mount St. Marys. I have no medical experience at all just starting from scratch. I have all prerequisites done and I've taking the TeasV. I was planning to do the ADN program and than do BSN program. I feel for myself that in the beginning I need a classroom. So looking at what you've gone through do you think you would have done WGU to get your original RN license?

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