Dear Nurse Beth,
I am 20 years old attending college for an RN-BSN degree. I am in my sophomore year (freshmen year was all prerequisite classes) and just started clinicals. Since highschool, I've been set on going into nursing. I only did this because I knew I was interested in the medical field and liked learning about health/science, but actually facing the reality of nursing...I'm not so sure I like it. I have been a nursing assistant at a nursing home for 2 years and HATE it.
It's always been a fear that nursing would be similar to a nursing assistant (I've gotten mixed opinions). I dread going to clinicals, and I just keep hearing how so many nurses hate their jobs and how incredibly stressful it is.
I was considering working at a clinic, but I did some research and found out that most nurses that work in doctor's offices need years of experience at a hospital before they can work there. I really don't think working in a hospital as a nurse is for me. Would it be a mistake to switch majors? I've been thinking about maybe going for a Radiation Therapist degree because it is still in working in health care but it doesn't seem so stressful (and they make more money). Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!
Dear Hates Nursing School,
It is hard to understand what nurses do until you're in the setting.
As far as working in a doctor's office, Registered Nurses rarely work in doctor's offices as doctors tend to hire medical assistants for much less pay. But there are lots of jobs for nurses outside of the hospital setting if you decide to stick it out. Working in a clinic is typically less intense than working in acute care, and the patients are not as ill. There's outpatient surgery clinics, infusion care settings, dialysis, community health, oncology clinics- many choices.
You don't say exactly what is it you hate about clinicals, but you hate your nursing assistant job. You do really seem certain that nursing is not for you, and if so, a Radiation Therapist might be a great choice. It is less stressful, and pays well.
Best wishes in your decision.
Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!