Im applying to PGCC lpn to rn program for the spring 2019 class. I will have A&P 1 and 2, Microbiology, English 101, Statistics, Sociology, intro to Psych, Human Growth and Development, Speech, and two Humanities classes completed. Basically all of the required prerequisites for any general nursing program Will be finished by the time I apply. Is there anyone out there who is currently in this program or has already graduated that could give me any insight on what to expect? Any information on clinical and class schedule, how hard the classes were, clinical rotation sites, nursing teachers, how rigorous it is, would you recommend it, etc....ANYTHING HELPS. Thank you in advance.
I finished the program in Dec 2015. However, I was not a LPN prior to entering the program. So, I can't really help you as far as the transition. I have not been back since I graduated though. I don't know if any of my instructors are still there. I can tell you that this was the hardest and most stressful 2 years of my entire life. To make matters worse, you have to test in and out of the program now. We didn't have to do that. Imagine working hard for 2 years and passing all your classes, but can't get your degree because you can't pass the exit exam. You will see some of your classmates left behind due to missing a passing score by 2 points. You will feel the stress of those damn SATA questions. I freakin hate those!!! The clinicals can be good or a waste of time depending on what facility you go to and the nurse they stick you with. I unfortunately had to do 3 semesters at Doctor's Community Hospital. I worked there as a PCT prior to going to school. So, I already knew what to expect. They did not disappoint. Most of the nurses did not want to be bothered with you. My instructor worked for the hospital. So, we couldn't find her sometimes cause she was "working". Talk about a hustle lol. They didn't allow us to pass meds or chart. All we could do was assessments. Sometimes you got lucky and got placed with a nurse who let you do things like meds and chart, but it wasn't often. My 1st clinical site was PGH. We were allowed to give meds there and saw a lot (teaching hospital). I heard Southern Maryland was great, but I never got assigned there. You don't really get to choose your instructors or clinical sites. You enter in "the lottery" and pray your number is called before your desired section fills up. You would do well to look over each section and decide which section works best for your schedule. I worked full time as a night shift unit clerk/nurse tech. It was a rough 2 years. I made it through, but just barely. I didn't pass Peds and had to repeat it. It was hard seeing the classmates I had become so close to move on without me, but I didn't let it get me down. I was determined to graduate. I did finish. I was told that I probably wouldn't pass the NCLEX as a result of me not passing a class, but I passed the NCLEX on the 1st try.
My advice to you is to read, read and then read it again. Don't worry about the A+ student or even being a C student. The "A" student will be the 1st ones lost when they hit "the floor". Many can be book smart, but not handle the actual "work". Luckily, you already have that experience. So, you can concentrate on your school work. I started as a CNA in 1996. So, clinicals weren't hard. Working full time and going to school full time was hard and my grades sometimes suffered as a result. Factor in the stresses of regular life and you're always on the brink of a nervous breakdown LOL. Get in with a good group of fellow students. The ladies in my 1st clinical group became my nursing school BFFs and we're still tight to this very day. As a matter of fact, we're all getting together next month for a baby shower celebrating the bundle of joy one of my classmates is carrying. Can't wait to see them. 3 of us work at the same hospital and the other 2 work in different facilities. We studied together and we ate together. We cried together. I don't think I could have made it through without them. Just keep in mind that most of your school work will focus on passing the NCLEX. This is a business and nothing ruins their business like students who can't pass the NCLEX. As you know, most of what you learn will be on the job. They do provide you with a pretty good foundation. I'm still standing and I haven't killed anyone yet. Good luck with everything. Take deep breaths and long walks. Listen to music and do one thing you love at least once a week even if it's just eating your favorite candy bar. You have to be committed and focused, but don't forget to show yourself some love. You'll do great. Be blessed.....
Thank you so much for responding. I had already expected that you have to test out to graduate; thats what I had to do in my LPN program seven years ago. But you have to test in as well? Is there a certain test you have to take to get in besides the TEAS test? If you dont pass the exit exam do you have to retake semester four classes, do they allow you to retake the exam again after a certain time period has passed? As far as clinicals, Im not surprised the nurses want nothing to do with you. It seems pretty standard these days. It's a shame how we eat our young. I was told that in nursing school years ago...boy were they right.
Is there any advice you could give on your instructors if you remember their names. What they like to see from their students, how hard was each class, what to focus on the most? Anything helps. thanks again.
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