Quote from Dream_Nurse
Oka, at work I met someone who just passed her LPN boards. She said that she wanted to go back for RN quickly, so I told her about EC. She printed out an application at work and filed it out. She told me she mailed it yesterday. She is not an internet person, so I figured I could come on here and ask for her, this being Allnurses and all. Anyway she wanted to know how she could check on her application status, and how long it takes. I told her it most likely took 2 weeks (that is what I was told a year ago). And this is my question, why does it take so long?
Excelsior has many mandatory wait periods, for one thing. For another, there are an awful lot of people who sign up with Excelsior, so the staff is no doubt bogged down in paperwork.
Years ago, it was possible to get your RN in a matter of months through Regents/Excelsior. But Excelsior has faced a lot of scrutiny over the practice of allowing just about anyone in the program so they have attempted to lose the reputation many have of Excelsior being a "diploma mill " by raising their standards. For example, the only people Excelsior allows in the program now are LPN's, RT's, paramedics, and those who have completed at least 50% of a traditional nursing (RN) program with passing grades. I think the standards for admission are still too lenient and there should be work experience requirements.
I see people all the time who assume Excelsior is a quick and easy way to get an RN license. That is why most people who start Excelsior do not finish. It does
take time to study and prepare for the tests, it isn't cheap, and with mandatory waiting you can't expect to realistically earn an RN degree in less than a year and a half to two years, no matter how quickly you move through the tests. The wait for the CPNE is 4-6 months, and truly, if you really prepare for the clinical it will take you about that long. And graduation dates run every three months, so if you complete the requirements in say, the beginning of January, as I did, you still have to wait until the middle of March for degree conferral so you can take the NCLEX.
I'm thankful that Excelsior was available because in my situation I could not realistically attend traditional classes, I have too many responsibilities to have been away from home that much. But it is by no means an easy or quick road, you have to get and stay motivated, and that can be hard, because no matter how motivated you start out, life happens and it is too easy to say you will study later, or take this test later. I say if you have the opportunity a traditional program is ideal.