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New Jersey nursing schools

Anyone out there that has any advice I appreciate it, a few questions: I am debating between going back for either my RN or BSN. I have my Bachelor's degree in Psychology but really am interested in pursuing a career in Nursing. First question: is the RN the better route to go or the BSN? Job opportunity wise is there a big discrepancy between the two?

Second: Recommendations on good programs in New Jersey? or Colorado?, I am considering both states, I live in Jersey now, but graduated from U of Colorado and have been contemplating moving back.

Third: Do programs ever allow students who've completed their Bachelor's degree to apply to their program, and if they are accepted take the pre-reqs, which for me at this point are 2 classes in the first year of the program?

Thank you....:monkeydance:

Spacklehead, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in Emergency, Cardiac, PAT/SPU, Urgent Care. Has 14 years experience.

I'm not quite sure what you mean by going back for your RN or BSN. Do you mean going back to a diploma program to prepare you to sit for the NCLEX when you say "getting my RN?" All three types of programs (diploma, ADN, BSN) will prepare you to sit for the NCLEX-RN exam. You only get your "RN" when you pass the NCLEX.

I do know that some hospitals in NJ will only hire BSN's (Hackensack comes to mind, unless this has changed over the years since I've lived in NJ). I don't believe there is really much difference in salary at hospitals that hire all three types of grads (diploma, ADN, BSN), so that really isn't an issue. As far as other nursing jobs outside of the hospital arena, community health agencies usually only hire BSN's, pharma companies hire BSN's, and public health agencies hire BSN's.

As far as good schools of nursing in NJ, I can only comment on BSN programs. The College of NJ and Rutgers are two that come to mind that have very good reputations when it comes to nursing programs.

To answer your third question, yes, most programs do accept students who have a bachelor's in another field. As far as the pre-reqs go, you would have to contact the program coordinators at the schools that interest you to get a definitive answer to that question.

Thank you for you reply. To clear up the "going back for my RN or BSN, misunderstanding" I should have more clearly stated, I already have obtained my Bachelor's degree and I am looking to go back to school to obtain either my RN degree or BSN degree so I can pursue a career in nursing. As I am in the early stages of investigating/Learning about programs/ nursing specialties/ avenues in nursing .. My reasoning for posting here was to see if others out there had any feedback regarding the pros/cons of enrolling in an RN vs. BSN diploma programs in New Jersey as well as employment outlook views between the two degrees. Again this wasn't clearly stated in my original post, my fault.

Your feedback is much appreciated, sorry for the confusing post. On a side note I have heard back from a few people who have recommended that I go to back to school to obtain my RN; they have mentioned to me that many employers/hospitals participate in tuition reimbursement programs for RN's who wish to go back to school to pursue their BSN, once they have been employed with them for a certain length of time. I have also have heard from a few RN's who have obtained positions, ie CRA with Pharmaceutical companies here in New jersey in their Clinical departments.

Spacklehead, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in Emergency, Cardiac, PAT/SPU, Urgent Care. Has 14 years experience.

Just a sidenote, if you aleady have a bachelor's in another discipline and it is a fairly recent degree, you may be able to transfer credits into a BSN program if you took similar courses (e.g. chemistry, psych, etc.) that could fill in some pre-req spots as well as the required electives (history, math, lit classes). This could shave a few semesters off which, in the end, could end up making the BSN degree obtainable in the same amount of time as getting your diploma.

NJNursing, ASN, RN

Specializes in Orthopedics/Med-Surg, LDRP. Has 6 years experience.

rookie i'm not sure you're quite understanding. Whether you do an associates program or a bachelors program, both come out to becoming an RN. There's no RN degree. It's ASN/ADN or BSN. You don't become an RN until after you take the national NCLEX test and pass - then you become an RN. So it doesn't matter if you do an associates or bachelors program in nursing - they both have the same result. But like softballmama said, some hospitals won't hire you without a BSN (although I don't know of any).

Being you've already got a bachelors degree, many of your existing classes will count already. As long as it hasn't been over x amount of time. I know some colleges won't take classes if they're older than 8 years old or so.

I can't comment on any colleges in Colorado so I honestly don't know. That'll be your personal decision on where you want to live. Whether you do an ASN or BSN it's still going to take 2-3 years (depending on whether you need to repeat any courses) so it's your choice if you want to stay in jersey for a couple more years or just move to colorado and do your classes there.

Hey rookie....im a recent RN, BSN graduate from The College of New Jersey...it was a great school if u you wanna try it out. Also i just read in the paper that a family donated 5 million dollars to TCNJ's nursing program (of course after i graduate right?) good luck...nursing is a great choice!!

if you already have a bachelor's, i would just go to a 2 year program and then pursue a rn-msn program if i wanted to go into advanced practice

NurseyPoo, RN

Specializes in Geriatrics, MS, ICU. Has 3 years experience.

Okay, if I understand this correctly you have a Bach. in Psyc...right? Well, you should be able to transfer several of the pre-reqs over. The other thing is that if you are going to do it get your BSN. I know several nurses that have both. Because you already have one bachelor's getting the second is not as labor intensive, provided the first degree is within the past 10 years. There are several good nursing schools in NJ. Where do you live...Northern, Central or South?

Hi Rookierunner9,

I have a little advice...being that you have your Bachelor's in Psych.......have you considered an accelerated program. I just transferred to Seton Hall this semester and I have met many people who have degrees already....don't get me wrong, I've been told that the accelerated program is very intense (as are all nursing programs) but triple that because it's a 18 month program. Some colleges/unversities accelerated program are up to 24 months. Hope this helps.


"I'm going to be a nurse....I'm going to be a nurse......I know I can...I know I can!!"

NurseyPoo, RN

Specializes in Geriatrics, MS, ICU. Has 3 years experience.

There are several colleges that offer an accelerated program. Someone mentioned Seton Hall, which I know is a fantastic school. Have you looked into fairleigh Dickinson, Rutger's, St. Elizabeth's, Wm. Paterson, UMDNJ, just to name a few?

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