new grad nurse: working and school full-time


  • Specializes in public health, heme/onc, research. Has 7 years experience.

Hello everyone.

I'll be a new grad nurse next Saturday (yay!). I'm in an accelerated Master's program. So I'll get my BSN next week and continue working on my MPH in January. I did try to apply for some new grad positions part time, but all the offers I got were for full time. All the nurse managers seem willing to work with me and be flexible with my schedule as far as school (I can't work on Mondays and Wednesdays) and have stated that I can complete my orientation full-time and then drop down to working part time.

So my question is do you think that working full time (that is 3 12hr shifts per week) and attending grad school full time (12 graduate credit hours) is too much for a new grad nurse? I've already told myself that if I can't handle both then I'll drop a class. Has anyone done this before? I know that I could just go to school part time but I really want to finish my MPH sooner than later.



149 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg, Psych..

It all depends on how much stress you can handle. I personally would opt out working part time.

After doing 12 hrs shift you will be exhusted and you will need another day to recooperate.

suzanne4, RN

26,410 Posts

Suggest that you complete your orientation before even starting any more classes, that is what will make or break you. There is going to be quite a bit of reading that you will need to do as well as preparation for your new job, and that needs to come first if you are going to work at all. That is why all of the orientations are scheduled for full-time only.

Trying to carry a full load of grad school at the same time may be overwhelming before you understand what it will be like working on your own and having total legal responsibility for your patients. And if you are in an accelerated program, it means that you are going to be doing more work per semester to get things done. Definitely not a good thing to be working full-time with that.

Example: did you work at all while working on the first part of your program? Or was it school full-time? And at the Master's level, you need to have higher grades in your coursework.


102 Posts

I think it depends on you.. I recently worked full-time nights and am going to school full-time grad school and it was too much. There are many in my class who are working full-time as managers on their unit, going to school full-time and have kids/husbands/families, so it can be done!!..

Sooo.. I myself did the 'full time' orientation to be able to work part-time and even would like to be PRN to be as flexible as possible.. PRN for me works well because you can work as many or as little as you desire, ex. pick up more during breaks etc. and I still get experience behind me..

Prioritizing your time is crucial, because you still have to sleep and maintain your mental health with the crazy schedule or you'll crack.


327 Posts

Specializes in Oncology, Research. Has 7 years experience.

I did it for one semester, although full time for me was only 9 credits. I am never doing it again. I just had no time for any kind of personal life. So now I have just accepted the fact that it will take approx 4-5 years for me to finish both my MSN and MPH. But I have to work full time. If you are able to drop to part time later and you still want to do school full time, then go for it. I think it may be doable.

Specializes in Emergency Room.

honey, i feel overwhelmed just reading your post. being a new nurse, especially the first year, can be very challenging. there is alot to adjust to and it requires your full attention. if you can wait until your orientation is over, i don't think you will regret it. congratulations on your accomplishments!!:balloons:

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