Low GPA, should I get it up or go for LPN?

  1. I did college for a year after high school, I never went to class and failed some classes and didn't get good grades in most of the ones I passed. That was just over 10 years ago now. I planned to go to nursing school and do midwife training after, but just liked the independence and lacked the drive. I was a great student in high school and graduated top of my class. After the first year I got married, had kids and have been a stay at home mom since. I haven't worked in over 10 years either. I recently went back to college as all of my babies are not really babies anymore. My youngest will be ready for preschool soon, so I planned to do my pre-reqs and be able to start a nursing program by the time they start pre-k.
    The problem is my GPA sucks, and I mean sucks. No school here does GPA forgiveness. I understand this, some people didn't mess around they kicked butt and made it, but it was 10 years ago for goodness sakes. My parents make a great living but never when to college. They couldn't tell me the ins and outs if you will, I had no idea I was screwing up my future 10 years later! I cannot move elsewhere. I am married and have kids, so we can't just pick up and move. I am pretty stressed, nursing schools were not as competitive 10 years ago!

    Here are my options:

    The ADN program requires a 2.5 overall to apply, but takes 50% nursing pre-reqs GPA + 50% HESSI score to rank and accept students. They do take in to account every attempt with a 2 attempt max for nursing pre-reqs (A&P etc).

    -It will take a bit to get my overall GPA up. Even if I can maintain a 4.0 from here on out I will barely make the 2.5 overall with my nursing GPA actually being a little better than that. I do realize I will be competing against 4.0 students. They don't do interviews or essays, just GPA and HESSI score.

    The LPN program requires a GPA of 2.5 in the 6 pre-reqs and does not go by overall GPA at all (kind of GPA forgiveness by default). They take every attempt into account, except in A&P 1 & 2, nutrition and computers, those must be done within 5 years. Anything over 5 years they don't use the GPA for (again a little GPA forgiveness by default). The picks (if you meet the GPA qual) go 100% off the TEAS test at that point and the advisor said scores in the high 60's get in.

    -I can pretty much get in this program no problem. Calculating my GPA for the non-time limit classes I am good to go. So as long as I maintain a 2.5-3.0 when I take A&P 1 & 2, nutrition and computers I just need to get high 60's in the TEAS. I would prefer to get at least high 70's+ just to make sure. The down side though is that I will have to do the RN bridge. No hospitals here hire LPN's and though I do believe they do wonderful work I don't want to work in a nursing home and despite my age I would still like to pursue being a midwife. Since I have no work experience though this might be a good idea. I could work as an LPN while I get my GPA up and get some work experience to boot.

    The same school that has the ADN has a LPN to RN bridge program that I could do later. We live in a small town in the middle of nowhere and those are my only options. I will have to dive almost an hour just to get to the ADN program and about 40 to the LPN program. There is BSN at the local university (1 hour drive), but their NCLEX pass rates are not good and none of the nurses here have recommended it.

    Sorry that was long! Any thoughts? Thanks.
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    About stephanie30

    Joined: Apr '13; Posts: 43; Likes: 9


  3. by   MommaTy
    All I can say is take some easier classes to boost up your GPA. I have a 3.0 and I was accepted into the RN program for fall 2013. Good luck
  4. by   16mm
    I think LPN sounds like your best bet and you could go straight into the bridge after you finish!
  5. by   stephanie30
    I know long term I might need to do that anyway, but it just seems like a waste of money and time. I am already 30 with no job experience. My problem is not that the classes were too hard, just that I never went. I feel like if I do the LPN program I can just do the requirements for the bridge and my bachelors after and get my GPA up that way, but in the mean time I can work.
    I can never get my GPA up to a 4.0 without GPA forgiveness, but even a 3.0 would take another year to year and a half of straight A's. I could be almost done with the LPN program by then.
    Congratulations by the way!
  6. by   stephanie30
    Quote from memphismom
    I think LPN sounds like your best bet and you could go straight into the bridge after you finish!
    It is the quicker to work route for sure. The LPN program has excellent first time NCLEX-PN pass rates and they never take more than a day to get back with me about my million questons. There are several options here for working, just not the hospitals.
  7. by   16mm
    It sounds like you know exactly what you want to do and how to get there! Good luck on your journey!!
  8. by   MierKat
    Stephanie, you could also take some classes online and get a Bachelors degree while you are getting LPN experience, or complete Excelsiors's LPN to RN program instead of commuting so far. Good luck! You'll get there.
  9. by   stephanie30
    I haven't heard of Excelsior. I will look into it. Thanks.
  10. by   EteRNalTranquility
    Don't knock working in a LTC facility just yet. There are some nurses who truly do love that work and you truly never know how you'll feel about a certain area of nursing until you experience it.
  11. by   stephanie30
    I am not knocking it! My sister works at one and her best friend. My sister mostly does in home care. She loves it. She has met the most amazing people. One was a lady was a teacher and author. She gave my sister amazing books to read and was a health nut. She helped my sister get into healthy eating. Her family moved her to a ltc facility, she was in this huge house and just couldn't maintain it. She said she thinks these women teach her more than she helps them.

    I really still feel that I want to be a midwife, so I need to do more than LPN school for that. I have wanted to be a midwife for forever and after having my own kids and being with friends when they had theirs I feel that way even more. I do volunteer doula work and love it (I know that is different but still love the birthing process). I am open to the fact that when I go to school I might find I love another area of nursing and change my mind. I love the idea of working somewhere while I get my GPA up. I feel like any experience will be great. I have some friends who are nurses and they said they had a field in mind when they entered nursing school and after they did something different.

    I shadowed an Oncology nurse the summer before my senior year of high school. That was a very difficult time. I am not sure I could do that. Maybe I was little young to see that kind of stuff I don't know. I did for a while consider neonatal, but after my twins were in the NICU I am not sure I could do that everyday. Our twins were just a little early, but the babies around them were so sick. I could maybe do pediatrics, but not sure. Our son has Spina Bifida, hydrocephalus, and pectus excavatum. I could see myself helping parents that were in our situation. That was the hardest time in my life for sure. It is still stressful sometimes, but he has been doing really well for the past few years.

    I just know that as a LPN one of my only options here is a ltc facility. I have heard it is becoming that way everywhere. If I get my RN I will have more options. I think being an LPN will be amazing and will treasure any experience I gain from it. I am definitely going with that option. It makes the most sense at this point.
  12. by   stephanie30
    Quote from MierKat
    Stephanie, you could also take some classes online and get a Bachelors degree while you are getting LPN experience, or complete Excelsiors's LPN to RN program instead of commuting so far. Good luck! You'll get there.
    I looked into it and I see some benefits. I am not sure it works for my situation though. My husband is military and since we move around so I don't think it will work. Not all states recognize it and some that do have preceptorships. I don't want to have to worry every time we move if I can practice. Jobs on base are really competitive and until I get some experience there is no way I can land one. I will keep it in mind though, it is a very interesting option. Probably depends are where we are living and planning on doing at the time. I did read the forum here about it, most people has great things to say.
  13. by   vintagemother
    Talk to other people in your state. There may be options that you don't know about. Here, in North CA, the community colleges can't, by law, be competitive, although there are minimum GPA requirements, but they are only applicable to nursing classes. In my area, GPA isn't as much a factor at private schools--which are also shorter in duration.

    Also, if your husband is military and hasn't used his GI bill, he can transfer it to you to pay for trade school. I know of a woman who became a dental hygeinist this way.
  14. by   willowita
    How are the students chosen at the ADN program?

    In my area, ADN programs have a minimum set of criteria and they'll throw everyone who meets that criteria into a lottery. So a 2.5 GPA student could be accepted over a 4.0 student if their number gets picked. So find out how exactly the ADN program in your area picks the students. You may not have to go head to head on grades alone. And if you don't have to pay much for the application process, just throw your hat into the ring anyway. You have a 0% chance of acceptance if you don't even apply.