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Nursing School and Work Experience

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Do you have to have hospital work experience to succeed in nursing school. I am so nervous that I will be the only one in my nursing school that was not a CNA or EMT before school.

Peppermint_RN

Has 2 years experience.

I worked fast food for 10 years by the time I graduated with my nursing degree. No medical experience at all.

HouTx, BSN, MSN, EdD

Specializes in Critical Care, Education. Has 35 years experience.

Nope - absolutely not. Nursing programs are designed for absolute beginners unless otherwise indicated... such as 'bridge' programs.

Best of luck to you.

tsm007

Has 2 years experience.

Nope - absolutely not. Nursing programs are designed for absolute beginners unless otherwise indicated... such as 'bridge' programs.

Best of luck to you.

I agree and sometimes you are better off not having experience because you don't have bad habits to unlearn.

SeattleJess

Specializes in None yet..

I agree and sometimes you are better off not having experience because you don't have bad habits to unlearn.

Amen to that! I've surprised at what I've seen some of the experienced CNAs do. Best never to have started down that path.

I had several classmates who had no experience prior to nursing school. My suggestion is to be the best student you can be, get noticed by your clinical instructors and also by the staff at the hospital your clinicals are held in, and ask for letters of recommendation along the way. When you are in clinicals, the staff is watching and making note of anyone they would like to have work there and those they wouldn't.

RunBabyRN

Specializes in L&D, infusion, urology. Has 2 years experience.

Prior experience helps some people and hinders others. You have to acknowledge that another way might be better than the way you have been doing it. Being fresh means you don't have to correct old ways or unlearn an approach to patient care (like I did!). Some people really struggle with this last point. There was a guy in the class above me, also a veteran who'd held a medical position, and he was so stuck in his ways that he failed the program. There were two of us in my class who had been in military medicine, but both of us were amenable to a new approach and new methods, and we both did fine and are now nurses. I think it's really an individual thing. I think that most people would benefit from working as a CNA before nursing school, but you won't be left behind if you don't.

afterseason, ASN, RN

Specializes in Peds PACU & Peds Psych. Has 1 years experience.

I had no medical experience other than what I'd gained from shadowing my mom (an RN). I had no issues with nursing school and passed with a 3.9 GPA, passed NCLEX first try, and am now an employed RN. And I was certainly not the only one in my class with no experience who ended up being successful. Have faith in yourself. You can do this!

rob4546, ADN, BSN

Specializes in ICU. Has 7 years experience.

I agree and sometimes you are better off not having experience because you don't have bad habits to unlearn.

This is so true. Out of the 7 people in my first year class that were CNAs or MAs, only one made it to graduation. One person even stood up in fundamentals and argued with the instructor about a skill we were learning that day...."That isn't how it is done in the real world..." she said. She didn't make it through the first semester and never have continued...

I didn't have any experience before nursing school. I ended up on the top of our class in clinicals, theory, and GPA. I had a job waiting for me a month before graduation, and passed the NCLEX the first time. You can do this without prior experience.

WOW!!! That's great!!! I hope I get that lucky with jobs when I graduate!

I had no experience and I graduated with honors. I worked at Starbucks before nursing school. All you need to do is work hard and don't give up! I will say that I have found getting a job to be a little more difficult for me than my classmates who did have experience, but I'm confident I will find something :)