Baby Steps to a Nursing Program?

  1. I want to get into nursing. But I have a long, long, long, long way to go.

    I don't have my BA/BS yet; I've flunked out of a couple of schools a few years back. I failed--not from lack of intellect, but a combination of immaturity, not having a support system, and an undiagnosed learning disability.

    Now I'm (slightly) more mature , have a great support system, and a diagnosis and I've learned coping skills for my disability. I'm ready for a change and I've (happily) quit a soul-sucking job recently. But I know that I have a lot of work to do to show myself (and hopefully--eventually--a nursing program) that I can succeed academically. My GPA is a huge mess.

    So, my question is, where to start?

    1. Volunteer somewhere? But where?
    2. Do a CNA or MA program? I've seen a lot of conflicting information as to what the difference is, even on here. Can anyone shed light?
    3. Apply/complete an ADN program
    4. Degree completion program like the Dix Scholars Program at Simmons. I think I have to do this just to earn my non-nursing BA/BS and to offset my negative GPA, and this is if I can even get into a program like that in the first place.
    5. Apply for a BSN program. I don't think that I have what it takes to get directly into a nursing major from any degree completion program as I've 'attempted' some of the nursing prereqs too many times before. Unless previous withdrawals (magically) don't count?
    6. Be a nurse?!
    7. Go to more school? Maybe I shouldn't get ahead of myself.

    I guess what I'm asking is, what should I do to get my feet wet? I know I can just call up any admissions office and ask, and I know you are not a admissions counselor, but I'd love to hear it from people who've done it first hand. What are some 'little wins' I can get under my belt to keep myself going? What helped you? What would you do differently if you could/had to start the admissions process again? What are you doing now? By the way, I'm in Newton, and I'd love ideas/tips from people who know of any good programs or volunteering or shadowing opportunities nearby.

    Thanks in advance for your advice and ideas. Oh, and a big congrats to those of you who've gotten into programs already!

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    Joined: Feb '13; Posts: 1


  3. by   Proton
    I would really love to hear an answer to this if there's anyone out there who can provide one. I have a very similar situation.
  4. by   Proton
    One more thing. Keep in mind I am in a similar situation and so my advice may not be the best, but here is how I plan to begin (unless someone can suggest a better plan):

    - Researching nearby hospitals to volunteer for
    - Beginning pre-reqs at a community college
    - still researching ADN vs. BSN either way there are some basic pre-reqs I will need to get out of the way
  5. by   ryanalice
    Most nursing programs (whether BSN or ADN) do look a lot at grades. So the best thing would be to sign up to take some college classes and get good grades in them. Maybe just try to take one or two to start, and work really hard in them. You could stop by a school like Bunker Hill or Mass Bay Community College and see what classes they recommend you start with. Some of the most common ones needed for nursing include A&P 1, A&P 2, and Microbiology.

    If you want to get into a community college nursing program, they usually require a test as well as part of the admissions process. But I would start with some classes first. Also - volunteering isn't essential, but could be a good idea if you want to get some more skills and make sure you like working in a medical environment.