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Loves Math And Wants To Be a Nurse

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Currently a junior in high school and thinking about nursing. GPA 98+ since a freshman in high school. But loves math. A true math geek. Lowest marking period grade is a 99% but mostly 100%. Some think nursing is a "waste" but I think not. Math has to be strong especially if going on to masters or doctorate. Can someone elaborate and give me your thoughts? Tired of feeling like I am needing to defend choices. Thank you.

yuzzamatuzz

Specializes in Pediatrics, Step-Down. Has 5 years experience.

As an RN I use math the most when calculating out meds and how much I have to give. Med math is fairly basic. Math was by far my best subject in high school and I loved calculus. I'll put it this way, you won't be doing calculus as a nurse. But you do have to be able to do basic math. In nursing school you'll have to take stats. You'll also have to take chemistry which will require some math. If you go on to do research some day with a masters or PhD, you will do a lot more math and will need to have a very good understanding of statistics. I may not be doing very complicated math at work every day, but I have found that as a nurse being a "math person" has helped me a lot. Everyone thinks differently, and certain people will be good at some things and bad at others. I am a math person so I think very spatially, structurally, and am organized. I love cardiology because the cardiac system is very structured. The pathophysiology of it has always made sense to me and I quickly fell in love with it back in nursing school. For example, it always just clicked for me why a baby with hypoplastic left heart syndrome has all the systemic problems and symptoms that they do, why they have the surgeries that they have, and why they need various meds to keep them alive. The neuro and endocrine systems make so much less sense to me. For example, I have a disease effecting my pituitary gland and I still only partially understand it. Being a math person, I have found that pediatric advanced life support clicked very quickly with me because it is made up of various algorithms (and believe me, this has been a HUGE asset to me this first year as a nurse). I think very spatially because of my math abilities, and subsequently became very good at putting in IVs.

If you feel like you want to be a nurse, then be a nurse. I was in the top 10% of my high school, went to one of the top undergraduate nursing schools, and graduated at the top of my college class. If you're like I was in high school (which you sound like you are), I used to study non-stop. I would complain about it, but secretly I loved it. I have always liked to be challenged, and math challenged me in high school. In nursing school I would engross myself in my textbooks and clinicals. Now real-world nursing challenges me every. single. day. People tell you that it is a "waste" because they don't know what a nurse really does. When I was a junior in high school I told my dad that I was going to be a nurse. He tried to convince me to be a doctor because I had the grades to be one. I may have had the grades to be a doctor but I had the heart to be a nurse. So I ignored him and I became a nurse. Now my dad knows what nurses really do and he knows that this was the right career choice for me. And the longer I work as a nurse, the more convinced I am that there is nothing else in the world for me. I complain about it all the time, like I did in high school with my schoolwork, but I love it all the same. Like I said before, I love to study...so someday, when I've had enough of the challenge inside the hospital, I will go back to school and get a PhD to teach and do research. However nothing has ever come close to challenging me as much as being a nurse, so for now I am completely happy and fulfilled working as an RN in the hospital.

Edited by yuzzamatuzz

SopranoKris, BSN, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 6 years experience.

Besides math, you'll also need to do well in sciences. Your high school science grades really don't matter, unless you're taking AP class for college credit (or if you failed them/barely passed). Most programs require (at the college level): Algebra, Biology, Chemistry, Anatomy, Physiology, Microbiology, Pharmacology, Psychology, Nutrition, etc. YMMV depending on the institution you choose to attend.

When you first go to college, you'll be in a pre-nursing program, designed to help you complete your pre-requisites before being officially accepted into nursing school.

If your high school offers health career training (e.g. CNA, phlebotomy, medical assistant, etc.), it would be good experience to gain and many schools offer bonus points for admission if you have volunteer hours or medical work experience. I know the high schools in my area offer CNA-type training in the Health Careers course that you can take as a junior or senior. It's worth looking into.

You might want to see if you can shadow a nurse for a few weeks to see if this is what you really want to do. You're a freshman and while it's admirable that you're already thinking about your future, you could easily change your mind about what you want to do with your life.

If you seriously want to become a nurse, I would suggest looking at each institution's nursing program entry requirements and start to narrow down your choices by the end of your junior year. You've got a lot of time ahead of you.

Do well in your sciences now...it'll help later! I took Honors Biology and AP Anatomy & Physiology in high school. I used a lot of the information I learned in those classes when I was in college.

As far as math goes, math is an integral part of your sciences and you'll need a solid foundation, so it sounds like you're on the right track.

Best of luck to you in your future!!! :D

llg, PhD, RN

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 44 years experience.

It's fine to be a "math geek" ... but tell people who question your career choice that you are MORE than JUST a math geek. Human existence and reality are more than just math. And a nursing career will involve you in a richer world and richer realms of human experience than just math.

I was good at math in high school, too. A lot of nurses are/were good at math. We just wanted careers that went beyond math to embrace the full richness that human experience has to offer.

The math skills and logical thinking will come in handy as a nurse. But you will be developing a lot of other skills, too. Tell people you look forward to the experience of developing to your FULL potention and not just limiting yourself to world of mathmatics.

Currently a junior in high school and thinking about nursing. GPA 98+ since a freshman in high school. But loves math. A true math geek. Lowest marking period grade is a 99% but mostly 100%. Some think nursing is a "waste" but I think not. Math has to be strong especially if going on to masters or doctorate. Can someone elaborate and give me your thoughts? Tired of feeling like I am needing to defend choices. Thank you.

It's so good to hear that I'm NOT the only one that feels this way! I'm very good at math and have always loved the "organization" of it. I took calculus in high school and had to re-take it during college for credit. While taking the course I started doubting whether I picked the right career choice in nursing considering how much I love math and how good I am at it. I also realized that there are so many nursing specialties that if you want to lean towards a nursing career that requires more math involvement look into a nurse informatics career. That's what I'm doing, I think it's a great way to combine my love for math and passion for helping people.

:rolleyes: