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Hello everyone.

A little background. I first went to college to be a Med Tech, but I screwed around and played around and finally dropped out of college. Worked in the real world of fast food for a year or so and thought I can't do this for a living. Enjoyed messing with computers, went back to college and got a degree in Computer Technology. Worked, mostly, as a phone support person. Hate it with a passion.

A year or so ago, I had to take my mom to the hosptial. The nurse I met there told me I should look into nursing as a career. I began researching this field and running it past family and friends who all agreed it would be great for me. They described me as a "caring giver". One of the things that makes me the most happy is helping out someone with a problem. I used to think I could do this with computer knowledge, but since all of the computer jobs are going over to Pakistan, I feel that my career choice has gone stagnant.

My grandmother had to be put in a nursing home after breaking her arm for physical therapy. I got to talk and know some of the nurses over there and they let me help out a few times and I cannot describe the sense of fufillment I got. It was truly remarkable to the way I felt about the job I am in. It was this experience that sowed the seed.

Fast Forward to now. I have decided to go back to school and get the ASN degree and then take the RN test afterwards. My wife and I have sat down and went through the money and it will be tight, but I think if I can just make it through we'll be better off in the long run. We have a wonderful little 6 month old baby girl too. Beside the point I know, but I am a proud papa! I will be 30 in January. I don't think that's too late to start a new career.

So, tomorrow I am going to call St. Mary's School of Nursing and see if I can talk to an advisor or counselor to see how I can get started and what college credits will transfer over. I feel excitedly scared about this decision. I have searched within myself for a long time and at my deepest level I feel very comfortable with this. I feel I'll make a damn good nurse. If I can just make it through and these other stories don't scare me away :D . More than anything I am scared I will suceed, which is an absurb statement.

I guess throughout my whole life I wanted nothing more than to take care of people and help them at their lowest moments and fix their problems.

Some questions I have:

What are the hardest classes in nursing school?

How much math is involved? College level Algebra, something more advanced?

How about the entrance exam? What does it cover? It's been described to me as a scaled down ACT.

Thanks for reading this long post,


Specializes in PCU, Critical Care, Observation.

Congratulations on making the decision......sometimes that's the hardest step of all.

Toughest all depends on what your strengths & weaknesses are. I can't say any of the classes I've had were tough. There is a lot of time & studying involved--especially in Anatomy & Physiology and Microbiology-----but in the long run, you'll come to understand why they make it a pre-req. I have also gone the ADN route & therefore did not have to take Chemistry. Eventually I will when I go for my bachelor's....but that's later on. College algebra is the highest math class that is necessary I believe at the ADN level. In the actual nursing classes....the equations are not hard to understand. A little tricky at first, but not hard to learn.

As far as the entrance test---depends on which one you have to take. At my school, it was the NET test & I did not find it hard at all. I didn't review for it & I hadn't had a math class in about 13 years....but I scored in the 89th percentile. We only needed to score 50 or higher for our school. If you know how to do fractions (add, subtract, mult & divide) & basic math----it should not be a problem. I have no idea what the other entrance tests are like. I have heard of some being difficult, but I didn't experience that with the NET.

Good luck with it all-----keep us updated with your progress!


488 Posts

Specializes in OB.

Good for you for doing what you want! So many people are unhappy with their job, but hey don't do anything about it!

The hardest part of nursing school is the amount of work you are expected to do outside of school. I am not talking about normal studying for college classes, this go way beyond that. You have to WANT to be a nurse in order to make it. And it sounds like you do!:D

As for my hardest class....When I was in A&P I thought that was the hardest, but in my third semester of nursing school I found out that was easy compared to PHARMACOLOGY! This class was a killer! But don't worry about how hard or easy nursing will be yet. Concentrate on your pre-reqs. Get the best grades possible to give you a better chance of being accepted into a school.

Good Luck!

:D Molly:D


2 Posts

I've always been good in the Sciences. Math, I'm ok. If it's just Algebra I think I can manage that.

What do you mean work outside of class besides studying? Not that I mind because I will be under a lot of pressure from myself to keep up and make it through. If I don't then I will be unemployed with seemingly no job in sight.

Jennerizer, the program I am in has Chemistry as a pre-req. Just the first General Chemistry though. I did well in it in High School, so that may not be so bad.

Where I screwed around first time I was in college it looks like I may have to retake Eng 101 and 102 again. I did ok in 101, but 102 was dismal.

What's the best way to study for Anatomy? Is it just memorization mostly? What about Pysiology and Microbiology?

Thanks for the responses everyone,



488 Posts

Specializes in OB.
What do you mean work outside of class besides studying?

I mean papers, care plans, homework, reading, prep work for clinicals, getting up at the crack of dawn to go to clinicals, all this on top of studying. I am sory if I scared you a little. I don't want to discourage you in any way, it is just that I went into it blind and it was a difficult adjustment for me. You will be fine.:)

Keep us posted on how things work out, everyone here is very helpful and a great support when you are feeling discouraged or down. We all have been there and understand what you are going through.

:D Molly:D


532 Posts

I found A&P I to be the most difficult prerequisite. It requires memorizing hundreds of bones, muscles and nerves. It was the hardest class I have ever taken because I am not good at rote memorization.

Some programs require just College Algebra, others require Stats. Most schools have a math test that you must pass in order to start clinicals. If you fail, they drop you from the program, so math is a big deal.

It takes most people at least a year to finish all the pre-req's. Then you apply to the nursing program and pray you get accepted. Be sure to ask how many applicants the schoold gets, how many students they take and what was the lowest GPA they accepted for the last semester.

At my school, they had 700 applicants for 110 spots and the lowest GPA they took was a 3.77 on the pre-req's. Some places have waiting lists of up to two years. Be sure to find out before you start taking classes.

Good luck.

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