Nurses/Moms-your advice, please! :)


Im a mom of 3 little ones (all under 4 yrs old), and any advice from other mom RNs about which program and work situation would be VERY much appreciated. Heres some background...

I am currently finishing prerequisities for nursing program (I am either between an accelerated BSN from UF or ASN from Santa Fe College-both here in Gainesville, FL). Both are similar in length, but I believe UF's program is limited to the teaching hospital (but not sure). Either program is comparable in length, though the ASN gives you more hands on, while the ABSN is obviously fast track and more book knowledge than hands on. Also, we have 3 major hospitals here in this somewhat small city: a teaching hospital, a VA hospital, and a privately owned hospital (still very popular). Normally, clinicals from the ASN program take place at one of these 3 hospitals. But I am beginning volunteer work in NICU at teaching hospital this month.

My first question is, do you think I should go for the ABSN (advanced degree, my first B.A. is in Spanish) or the ASN (more hands on learning, possibly better prepared)? I just want to make sure I have a job in 3 yrs (when I would finish either program), but if I do well in school, will the degree really matter here since theres so many hospitals/doctors offices?

My next question is, what do you think is the ideal work situation for having little ones? I REALLY want to be home for them the most I can, so I am willing to work nights, or days they might be in school, but I know schedules can fluctuate A LOT and I dont think this would be good for my current situation with little ones. Would a PRN position would be better? I know this thread might sound a little silly and contain a lot of questions, but I am really new to all this and the few nurses I know think Im crazy for going to school with little ones, and wont give me much information or advice except NOT to do it I have a passion for it, am working hard and getting A's, and my husband supports me 100% in all this. Please help! Thank you for your comments :)

BTW, forgot to mention Im currently a stay at home mom.


184 Posts

I have four kids and work nights. I like when my three 12's are together so I can cycle back to days. I just wanted to mention that after you graduate most places are going to hire new grads for only full time. Most likely they are not going to train you as a newbie nurse for PRN.


32 Posts

Are you sure the ABSN you are looking at is less hands on? I am enrolled in one now and our clinical hours actually exceed a traditional 4 year program. I would go for the BSN, it will help you more in the long run.

Specializes in Oncology, Psych, Corrections.

I would go for the BSN. I have been a nurse for 5 years and am now going back for my BSN. Most places are preferring BSN nurses...stinks for those ADN's :( Since you have a Bachelor's degree already, can't you do a bridge program? You will get the same amount of hands on (at least) in the BSN as you would an associate's. You may get more.

I don't think you're crazy for going to school with little ones...just means you are trying to better YOURSELF for THEM.

As far as should try to get at least a year or two of full time work under your belt. I don't know of any place that would train you as a new nurse on a PRN basis.



223 Posts

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

Go for the BSN!! I was accepted into both an ADN and BSN program (years ago). Because I already had a bachelors degree, I decided I would go for the second bachelors. At that point I had no intention of working towards any other advanced degrees. Fast forward 20+ years and I decided to get a masters. The best decision I made was getting the BSN when I had the opportunity. Bottom line, go for the BSN. You never know when/if you will need a more advanced degree (plus the BSN should put you ahead of the ADN nurses when competing for the same job)

icechick, RN

86 Posts

Specializes in Med Surg. Has 1 years experience.

Don't listen to anyone who tells you not to go to school!! Even with kids, it is possible. I have four kids & recently graduated from a BSN program. When I started, they ranged in age from 1-7 yrs old so they were pretty little. It was hard at times, but you are doing what needs to be done for your family!! Go for the BSN because it will get you farther. You will get all the hands on experience you need once you start working. Nursing school only sets the foundation, the real learning takes place once you get a job! You have a few years before you need to think about what schedule to work. Chances are you won't have much of a choice, as a new grad you need to take what you can get. Whatever the schedule, you can make it work. Good luck!!


7 Posts

GOOD FOR YOU!!! I start the ADN program next week. I was accepted at Santa Fe but I chose Central Florida in Ocala (I live in Williston) simply because they have a part time program which finishes in the same amount of time as the full time because I go during summers also. You'll do just fine whichever route you take as long as you have a strong support system at home. I have a 1 1/2 year old so I know your pain leaving them, but its ALL FOR THEM. GOOD JOB MOMMY!!!! :yeah::yeah::yeah: Bytime they are old enough to really remember this will all be far behind you. A BSN will definetly make you more competitive, but you can go about it a little slower and save your self some stress. Good Luck which ever route you choose. Also how did you go about volunteering for NICU? I would love to do that as well, please let me know how it goes for you!!!! :redbeathe


101 Posts

Has 3 years experience.

I wouldnt know what to tell you about school (all those abreviations blur my eyes) but I love working weekend option for the sake of my lil ones. I get to be home with them m-f, they stay with family (dad/gparents) on the weekends. Not only am I saving a TON in childcare costs but the time I spend at home with my family is invaluable. Plus weekend option pays a little better so its almost comparable to a full time paycheck.

Specializes in Emergency Room.

I would pick BSN. Offers more mgmt opportunities later. I work 3 12's midnights and it's perfect (though not ideal) for being there for my kids). Mine are older but I take them to school, sleep and pick them up. I work while they sleep so they hardly notice that I work. Good luck!

Specializes in Pediatrics.

I would go for the BSN route. I did an ASN program and while I loved my instructors and classmates and feel that I got a quality eduation the hospitals in my area will only hire BSNs. So now I am working full time, school full time, and a single parent. So I can get that BSN and get out of a SNF and into acute care.

As for school, make sure you have a back up back up babysitter, a strong support system in place.

I worked part time, nursing school full time and a single parent, my kids are older than yours and they learned to vaccumm, do dishes and the laundry while I was going to school. If you can manage you time well with a support system you can do it.

The good thing about nursing is there are flexabile schedules, I still am not employed in acute care hospital, but I went from working 8hr evenings in a SNF to 12 hr days with 2 on 3 off rotation which is deffinatly better for my kids. Once you get experience the scheduling options begin to open up more

Specializes in FNP. Has 25 years experience.

I attended UF for Law School, so biased Gator here. If I were in your shoes and I was accepted to UF SON, there is no way I'd even consider going someplace else. Shands is top notch. You won't be lacking for any educational opportuties there, I assure you. There is also no other place in Gainesville I'd even apply to besides Shands. Absolutely none.

Good luck.


19 Posts

I would go for the bsn - many more opportunities for you.

I am going to school for my bsn at Unitek College in Fremont California.

Since you are a stay at home mom why don't you take the accelerated rn to bsn online? :idea: That's what I'm doing and I am so glad I did since I can still work and take care of the kids.

And no you are not crazy at all because then that would mean that I am crazy and I am not!:uhoh3: So don't worry, you are good!:redbeathe