Looking for advise on career change into nursing.

Posted
by techjob4u techjob4u (New) New

I have read some similar questions but I have a bit more detail an would like some real answers on how to move forward. First let me give some detail on myself. I am a 38 year old male who has a business degree B.S. and has worked for the last 11 years as a recruiter mostly in the IT and Engineering field but I did work for one year as a Division Manager for a Health care staffing company. During the time I worked for the health care company I couldnt not believe how lucky the nurses were to get 3, 12 hour shifts and be able to take PT gigs on the side and depending on the location and skill set allot of the nurses were bringing in pretty good $. At the same time I was working for the med staffing company my brother was sick and dying from cancer so I gained a huge respect for the nurses who took care of him and started think I was in the wrong side of things. Sure I made allot of money, but I hated my job all staffing companies care about is $ and all they did was hire and fire people based on numbers. In 5 years my company had 5 division managers for nursing, and after one year I went back to an Engineering recruiting company sick of the churn and burn. While working for the Engineering firm, I though about going into nursing but the hours are almost impossible to work full time job and go to school. I looked into it and the local community colleges had a 1 year plus waiting list and even if they didnt the hours were 8- 3:30, and the night class's were 4pm to 9pm. Even the more expensive private schools had almost impossible hours for me. Since I was working full time 8-5 and making over 68k I gave up on the nursing idea yet again. Well all was well in the land of engineering until feb 2009 when I was laid off with 50 other coworkers. I have been collecting unemployment for close to 10 months at this point and have not gotten any interviews eventhough I have applied to over 300 jobs! Who needs a recruiter or HR Generalist when no one is hiring! All of my friends are in the same boat out of the 50 of use only 7 have found work. I have been studying for my PHR (professional human resource) cert, but I was thinking about going to unemployment and seeing if I can get job retraining since I have not been able to find work in my field despite my exp, degree and tons of applications. My wife has decided to go back to work full time and told me she is willing to work full time since the kids are older ect.

Here is the question. What is the best route. I have looked into BSN class's and USF is close to me in Tampa but I do need to work, I cant just be out of work for 2 years in a row, I have gone thru my 401k and savings. I was looking into a six week CNA course, I know the pay is low but I might be able to get a job and work as a sitter late at night or in a nursing home 2 or 3rd shift, and then go back to school. As far as school I am so lost with the route to go. BSN vs LPN. or LPN vs ADN or should I get my CNA work then get my BSN or ADN.

Theres no wonder why they have a nurse shortage, they make it impossible to attend class's!

I know I am not gonna make the same $ I made as a Branch Manager - Recruiter, but I am sick of the turn around in my profession, at least nursing is stable.

I am once again ready to give up on nursing for the 3rd time... any advice would be great. I think if I could get an RN, LPN, ADN or BSN with my business background I would be a huge asset to a hospital and could really keep the agencies in check and should be a huge asset.

MedSurgeMess

MedSurgeMess

Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, educator. 985 Posts

if you read the other posts on this site, nursing is anything but stable. Many new grads cannot find a job, most places now want at least 1 yr experience, if not more. The economy has driven many non-practicing RNs back to the bedside, so many previously open opportunities are gone. You may want to research before making a decision. Not trying to discourage you, just giving you some honest facts, unlike the nursing schools who keep churning out more students and telling them "nurses are very in demand, you'll have no trouble finding a job". It's not a very good time in nursing, and hard telling when things will pick up again.

elkpark

14,633 Posts

The nursing "shortage" is largely a myth, as you can see from looking around this site. And, although nursing has not been hit as hard as some other occupations in the recent economic slump, this is not a good time for nursing. Also, nursing is not nearly as "stable" as a lot of people seem to think.

Having said that, have you looked into whether there are any accelerated BSN programs in your area? These are designed for people who already have a BA/BS in another field. They are extremely fast-paced, rigorous, and demanding, but they often take only 12-18 months (depending on the individual program) for you to complete a BSN and be eligible for licensure.

november17

november17, ASN, RN

Specializes in Ortho, Case Management, blabla. Has 9 years experience. 1 Article; 980 Posts

Working as a sitter would probably work pretty well if you were in school.

AnnieNHRN

AnnieNHRN

Specializes in med/surg, ER, camp nursing. Has 10 years experience. 101 Posts

Don't get discouraged. Yes, right now the job market is not rosy for nurses as well. But in a couple of years things will be better again.

The good thing about getting your LNA is that you'll be able to work 7-3 and go to school in the evening, meanwhile, getting some health care experience under your belt. I know the $ won't be great, but if you can wing it I would think about it. I would look at what program better fits your financial situation, goals, and timeframe.

Good luck!

CASTLEGATES

CASTLEGATES

Specializes in Addictions, Acute Psychiatry. Has 27 years experience. 424 Posts

If you apply anywhere, in your letter you'll need to be sure your spelling is correct. Make sure also in a resume, spelling is done correctly (when managers and recruiters for schools and facilities see misspells, the paper typically goes straight into the trash without a second look). It's a tight market for students and jobs; one cannot afford to see grade school issues like these arising in such a literate-heavy profession in light of so much competition.

One would not want to award a degree or have staff charting in a permanent record without grade school level skills like these being overlooked.

(IMHO not to be disrespectful in any way...just trying to help)

techjob4u

techjob4u

10 Posts

No issue kind of jammed out my thoughts without a spell check. Didnt see one in the blog options.

techjob4u

techjob4u

10 Posts

Let's say I do go for a CNA is there a CNA to LPN option.

I see the LPN to RN option in many schools.

I also see a BSN option, which might be best for me if I can figure out how to support my family for the next 1.5 yrs without income.

Also how would an ADN or LPN who has a BS degree be looked at?

I almost feel like I am taking steps backwards by going back to school to get a BSN when I already have a BS Degree.

Maybe, I should just finish my PHR and use the $ to finish my Masters in HR vs trying to start over at 38. From the threads above it looks like RNs are having just as much trouble with work as I am. I would hate it but I can always go into high tech sales again or medical devices. SIGH!

Edited by techjob4u

elizabelle

elizabelle

160 Posts

As a second degree pre-nursing student, I can relate to you. I am in my 30's, worked for the last 5 years in sales, and just applied to a BSN program in my area. I have second guessed myself a lot along the way, but I truly feel that I am on the right path. Making career choices isn't just about money. Yes, the job market for new grads right now stinks in some areas, but in other areas it is better, and things are bound to improve by the time we are licensed. I am choosing to be optimistic on that topic. :-)

I would mention when you are considering the time commitment, make sure you are including the nursing pre-reqs, which are around 20 hours of science classes you may or may not have taken in your first degree that you will have to get out of the way before applying to a BSN/ADN program.

I would also suggest that you check into the schools around you to see if they have a weekend program BSN. The program I applied to offers a weekend option, and many of the applicants who need to work decided to go that route. It is something to consider. Yes, it will be tough to work and get through school, but you can do it. Tons of people on here have proven it is possible. And lots of people on here, too, will tell you it is worth it. Good luck to you.

Jarnaes

Jarnaes

Specializes in US Army. Has 14 years experience. 320 Posts

I'd hate for you to go backwards in education, skip CNA and LPN. A better option for you would be to get your Master's.

A few schools have bridge programs that will allow someone with ZERO nursing degree to become a nurse practitioner, Vanderbilt university in TN is one of them: http://www.nursing.vanderbilt.edu/msn/prespec.html

Good luck to you.

MedSurgeMess

MedSurgeMess

Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, educator. 985 Posts

I'd hate for you to go backwards in education, skip CNA and LPN. A better option for you would be to get your Master's.

A few schools have bridge programs that will allow someone with ZERO nursing degree to become a nurse practitioner, Vanderbilt university in TN is one of them: http://www.nursing.vanderbilt.edu/msn/prespec.html

Good luck to you.

yes, but many potential employers will see 0 nursing experience and you will end up working at the bedside anyway, making the same rate as other new nurses, or just a small amount above, but not enough to justify the $$ spent on a masters degree...also, what if you get into it, can't find a job or don't like it. Then you still have to pay the education bill.

As far as I know, there is no such thing as a CNA to LPN program. Your best bet is probably still an accelerated BSN program....just check out all of the options before jumping in to anything.

elizabelle

elizabelle

160 Posts

I'd hate for you to go backwards in education, skip CNA and LPN. A better option for you would be to get your Master's.

A few schools have bridge programs that will allow someone with ZERO nursing degree to become a nurse practitioner, Vanderbilt university in TN is one of them: http://www.nursing.vanderbilt.edu/msn/prespec.html

Good luck to you.

This is a good point - and an option I considered very seriously. However I ultimately decided to go for the BSN, and here's why: direct-entry master's programs (at least the ones I looked at) are much harder to find, so you are way more limited to where you can go. There are none in my area, so I would have had to move. Further, you will end up spending an arm and a leg on tuition vs. an ADN or BSN. The programs I looked at were all well over $20,000 a year. Another big drawback is that all the programs I considered required you to choose a specialty when applying. How are you supposed to know what you want to specialize in when you have no experience whatsoever? And, as someone else pointed out, as a new grad whether you come out with an ADN, a BSN, or an MSN, your starting salary will be the same because you have no experience. The difference is in your opportunities to advance. So considering all of that, I decided to go for the BSN (and as a 2nd degree student, you are eligible for accelerated programs that are 15 months vs. 2 years). The BSN is much cheaper, and then once you get your RN, you can work for a while, figure out what facet of nursing you want to pursue, then go back for your MSN, if you so desire. That's my plan, anyway.

One last piece of advice - if you do decide to pursue nursing, make sure that you do your best to make A's in all your prereqs. It is highly competitive to get into programs, and your gpa will be extremely important. I am waiting with baited breath this week to hear if I got into the program I applied to. Even with a 3.83, I am far from guaranteed a spot.