New here...need advice


Hi Everyone!

Im new here and need some advice. (Not sure if Im even posting this in the correct forum)

I have always been interested in going into the medical field. Im 28, have 2 children and finally ready to take the first step...atleast I think I am:) Im actually not sure exactly where to start or which program I should be going into. Its all so confusing. Do I start out with a CNA cert. and then move on? Go straight into an RN program or become a medical assistant? I dont have a HSD but do have a GED. Is that going to make a difference into what program I can get into? Can you just enter a program or do they pick and choose who they want? Im also afraid Ill go to school for X amount of time and then not be able to find a job. Any bit of advice will help move me in the right direction, it will be great appreciated:) Thank you!


Specializes in Hospice.

I think it depends are your goals if you want to become a nurse a medical assitant will not help you at all in that journey.(but a lot of people love that job) I would instead start as a cna, then lpn and then go to rn from there. Good luck


3 Posts

Thank you very much.


21 Posts

As the previous poster stated, it depends on your goal. I personally got my LPN first and am now doing an LPN-RN program at a community college. To be honest, if your goal is to be a nurse I would go for the LPN first instead of a CNA because LPN's get paid much more than a CNA and you can get your LPN in one year! :)


53 Posts

You will most likely get a job if you go into clinical work, not the business end like medical office work. CNA is a good start to see if you like it - it's a short program at any community college but they are getting expensive nowadays. The one at my college is 1500. Extra for the licensure. Comm. colleges don't require anything but a GED. For nursing, it's ultra competitive, you need usually an all A average to get in, and there are a few years of pre req courses before you can even apply. I'm in an RN program now - it's about 60 hours/ week of work, not a good idea if you need to work while in school, actually rather impossible. For a Associate's degree in nursing for the RN it's 2 years of prereq's & 2 years of clinical/theory and another year and half for the BSN. Most hospitals will only hire BSN's now. So it's a 5 year commitment.

Start slow and check out the non-degree programs first. Good luck!

Specializes in Psychiatry, corrections, long-term care.. Has 3 years experience.

I recommend to anyone wanting to get in on the healthcare industry, to obtain their CNA first. It lets you dip your toes in the water and see what it's like. If you have a significant other to support you financially, working as a CNA part time would be great experience. The work is physically demanding but you're the best person to judge your level of fitness.

I'm glad I'm working as a CNA now, because when I'm in school for my LPN I can work night shift at my facility and there are quite a few hours of downtime to study. If you really want to jump right into nursing, I'd suggest LPN and then bridging to RN. If you're afraid you won't go back to school after your LPN and want to go right for your RN, have at it. You know you best. Good luck. :)


223 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care, Nsg QA. Has 28 years experience.

Here's my 2 cents worth:

If you are interested in being a nurse, go to a counslor (at a community college) to find out your options. Having a GED may affect how you go about getting into school. Personally, I would not go the CNA route. It's very hard work for very little money. You don't say if you have to work while going to school.

As far as I know (which may not be much), the CNA will not do much for you in the way of schooling, as in transfering classes towards a nursing degree. To me that's time (wasted) rather than going towards an RN degree. Much depends on factors that I am not aware of.

Since you have children in school, everyone can benefit as they see you studying and they have no excuse NOT to study! What a positive role model!

Good luck with your decision!

if you want to get your RN eventually, dont wait! i deffinatly recommend going for your BSN which you can get in 4 years. after 2 years you automatically qualify for your CNA (endorsed by the school and all you do is pay the state for the license) and soon after that you will be on your way to a RN job. (just remember, if your going to be a nurse most employers opt for BSN students with some sort of experience, such as a CNA). Good Luck!!