Older student Accelerated Program vs. Generic BSN


Hello everyone,

I'm finding myself at a midlife crossroads. I currently work FT but considering Nursing as as a career change.

- I'm in my early 40s and I'm in debt approx. $30K, student loans mostly.

- I need to finish my BA (I have about 14-16 credits remaining to graduate).

Clearly, the first order of business is to go back and finish my BA. Then it would be tackling the prerequisites. I would complete those during in the evenings/weekends next year. My main concern is that with an Accelerated Nursing Program I don't think realistically I could balance working FT and my course load and most of the Accelerated programs are during the day anyway. However, I don't want to limit my future opportunities.

In researching (I might be wrong) I discovered that most countries outside of the U.S. do not recognize Accelerated programs, they prefer traditional 4 year programs. I do realize that in the States an accelerated degree is graduating with BSN.

So it seems if I go that route (after I complete my 1st BA) I'm still school regardless a minimum of 2 1/2 - 3 years. As much as I prefer not to work, I really do want to take out additional loans. So I have to find way to work FT and attend PT ideally. BMCC has an evening/PT program but that's for an Associate Degree, I want a Baccalaureate Degree.

Does my plan sound realistic? To work FT, attend PT and be done in the time frame above.

Should I be considering another route ie LPN > RN?

The only reason I want to skip the LPN step is because I figure why not just try to knock out the BA if ultimately I'm going to have to go back to school anyway. But maybe there is something I'm not taking into consideration.

I am taking the next few months to get more familiar with what is expected of me academically, by meeting with the advising departments of the schools I'm interested in LIU, SUNY Downstate, NYC Tech.

I'm trying to realistic in what I have to be prepared to do, in order to make some serious lifestyle changes in the coming year to make this a reality.

Any advice is welcome.


16 Posts

An accelerated degree program can grant you a BSN. You just need to look at it very carefully. The program I did was completed in about 15months and there were many people who were older in the program (some with teenage kids). No one worked full time while doing the program though. This program was full time so not much time for anything else. I hope this clarifies things somewhat.


291 Posts

Just an FYI, most accelerated programs award a BSN. I'm not sure where you saw that they aren't recognized internationally or they don't grant a BSN but I've never heard of that. I graduated from Stony Brook's ABSN program with a BSN. My transcript and diploma look the same as anyone else with a BSN.


4,103 Posts

Specializes in NICU. Has 8 years experience.

Are you wanting to work internationally? If not, then why care about the acceptance of ABSNs in other countries? I just graduated from an ABSN program and my transcripts say MAJOR: Nursing and my diploma is identical to the traditional nursing program's diploma.

The link that you posted above is sort of misleading. UK nurses are specialists and US nurses are generalists. US BSN programs do not have the required specialty courses to work in UK. UK programs do not have the courses outside of their specialty to qualify for a US license. It has nothing to do with ABSN programs, it's the entire US BSN system that is not accepted.


37 Posts

Has <1 years experience.
UK programs do not have the courses outside of their specialty to qualify for a US license. It has nothing to do with ABSN programs, it's the entire US BSN system that is not accepted.

Thank you! That explains what I needed to know. My plan ideally is not be in the states in another 10 years. I did not want to invest time and money into a "career change" and not be able to take advantage of opportunities outside of the US. Now that I know, this helps me rethink some things.


37 Posts

Has <1 years experience.

Unfortunately, I can't edit my question to remove the question about international/ABSN. That is becoming the main focus, when it wasn't my intention. In bold are what my main concerns are.