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  1. Graduated in Dec.'08. I applied for jobs in December, hoping to at least work as a GN or CNA until I took and passed my NCLEX. I did get a job, started in mid-Jan working as a CNA/GN. I now work fullt-time as a nurse on mostly day shift at the same facility, and love my job. I did initially have to travel about 45min to find this job, but have since moved near my job (now less than 10min away). A friend of mine waited until Summer '09 to take her NCLEX. She applied everywhere, got her license in another state to apply there, and still couldn't land a job. She had no health care experience, but a solid work history. To make a long story short, she's now working at the same facility as mine. She had to start as a CNA (even though she'd passed her NCLEX) because no nursing position was available. After a few months of this, a nursing position opened, and she now works two 12-hour shifts on the weekend. A matter of one semester made a dramatic difference in job opportunities. It's been about a year and a half since I graduated, and I still had to start out as a CNA in order to work my way up. Now, even that seems not an option. SO MANY NURSING PROGRAMS have opened in my area. It's REALLY a shame for the people who paid for private trade schools with the promise of "recession-proof" nursing... The only upside to all this is that it's going to be that nursing is a profession people enter because they GENUINELY want to be nurses and not because of just "having a job".
  2. amjowens

    Spring Arbor University ADN-BSN

    I spoke with an advisor from Spring Arbor University who was visiting my school. She made it sound so smoothe, with one class per week. It sounds like they are very flexible with transferring credits (I'm graduating with my ADN in Dec 2010 God-willing!) Tuition is about $16k for the 1.5-year program. Any information much appreciated! I'm planning a formal tour/sitting down with advisor about my transfer credits, etc. May 17th. Thanks!
  3. amjowens

    LPN outlook

    Thank you for recognizing the knowledge/skill base of LPNs. There aren't many new RNs who recognize this, so it's refreshing to hear of a RN who is open to recognizing LPNs. I graduated from my LPN program in Dec of 08. I started a regular RN program (not a bridge, since hadn't even taken NCLEX-PN yet, but had applied to the ADN program before even starting the LPN) in Jan of 09. I'm currently in my third semester of RN school, have one to go. I work full-time in long-term care and go to school full-time. My goal is to become a geriatric nurse practitioner. My LPN training is probably going to turn out to be the most valuable education I'll receive toward becoming the kind of nurse I hope to be. The program was intensive, patient-oriented, and skill-heavy. The concentration was on care of the patient in a very practical yet holistic way. Even if I'd had no wait to get into the ADN program, I'd CHOOSE to do the LPN year of training before doing my RN. My RN program doesn't even touch to quality of education I received in my year of LPN. The instructors are distant, the other students are with "I'm an RN-student-I-don't-have-to-do-THAT" syndrome, and the program is just overall sink-or-swim and nobody cares. The content is not in-depth...you're shown a skill once, the program is too large to even be noticed if you've mastered it (yes, you have to pass with a certain percentage, but as for details and in-depth training, it's not there). My LPN program had presence of instructors who cared that you first, had the skills mastered, critically-thought about why doing, and made sure the holistic care and professionalism by the student-nurse was considered. This is the kind of stuff that I THOUGHT the RN program would expound upon! I'm in my third semester, yet I am waiting for this. I think the plight of LPNs is representative of overall nursing lately...LPNs are like the old-fashioned nurse as we think of: wisely applying skills for and willing to care for the WHOLE patient. Too bad this kind of nurse is going out of style. I'm proud to have been exposed to the LPN profession, and I'll be careful to never forget these fundamentals of THINKING like a LPN even when I get to big-shot RN/BSN/MSN status.
  4. amjowens

    Hard time going from LPN to RN????

    I think it all depends on your situation. I chose to do a regular RN program directly after I graduated from LPN school. I hadn't taken my NCLEX-PN yet when I started RN school. I'd applied to this ADN program before LPN school, so was on a wait list. During my wait, I finished my LPN. The real benefit is that my classroom work is online, so I comfortably work full-time as a LPN. The downside is that I have an "extra" semester because I could have done the bridge program in three semesters. Oddly enough though, due to wait lists and pre-reqs, I'll be done with my RN before any of my former LPN classmates who are working on their RN (or pre-reqs for RN school). I love being an LPN and would have done the same thing over again in a second...I feel my LPN program taught me the fundamentals of the kind of nurse I want to be. In addition, I love my job and make enough money to pay for RN school.
  5. amjowens

    LPN and RN

    I completed my LPN in Dec 08 and am in my third semester of a RN regular ADN program. I plan to continue on for my BSN prob a semester after I graduate from my ADN, and my goal is to become a DNP. LPNs are generally being phased out of hospitals. To say that a LPN license is worthless and comparable to a CNA status shows lack of correct information (or limited info). I, for ex, supervise 5 CNAs q shift, pass meds on about 20 residents, assess constantly, do dressing changes, round with the wkly physician visit and follow through on orders, constantly involved with pharmacy/orders/state compliance procedures with meds, and interact daily with PT/OT/hospice nurses. Not only am I constantly practicing the NURSING duties that are a big part of being an RN too, but I am earning about double what a CNA makes, so I'm able to pay for my RN school. I did one year of training to practice basic nursing skills ALL during my RN program, as well as earn pretty good money for it, so I don't think it's a waste. I absolutely recommend that anyone considering getting their LPN go on to earn a RN asap. In addition, though, I recommend that RNs get their BSN, so does that make the ADN a waste of time? I don't think so!
  6. I don't think the accreditation is the issue here, I think it's the school sounding to be one of the proprietry kind. Nothing transfers from those schools. You get your license, you have your license, and that's what you've got to understand that you're getting. And that's all. It's a personal decision, related to how fast you want to work as a nurse, how much money and time you want to spend, and whether you're willing to retake a few courses. These places do tend to be expensive, and I'd consider the numbers as to whether it's worth it to wait a year or so working as an aide, waiting to get into a community college or college personally. LPN pay for a year would have to really make up compared to CNA pay in order to be worth the $15K, $20K+ that I'm spending (and to not have THOSE classes transfer).
  7. I am laughing reading some of these comments! This is SO human nature, and reason for all the anger...the whole hierarchy thing! I mean, what's the argument? A nurse aide with a college degree saying she essentially has the same "education" or more as her supervisor, the LPN, would make one wonder. Just the same, regardless of the personal background of the LPN, the educational requirements are clearly less in time and scope for the LPN compared to the RN. The same with the RN compared to the MSN. ??? I don't get it. It's nothing personal, and pretty matter-of-fact. I graduated from a community college with my LPN CERTIFICATE. We didn't take part in graduation because we weren't earning degrees. I personally want to earn my degree, and am currrently in my third semester of RN school. I'll earn my degree in nursing. It doesn't matter if I had my BS or MS in psych or biology or anything else, as I think it's a little misleading for someone who didn't pay dues to say they're a BS nurse who's just a LPN. I mean, congratulations on the degrees, or knowing 5 languages, or having travelled the world for example, but all that still won't make one have the credentials of such a structured degree as those in nursing specify.
  8. I am REALLY hoping for you that you get this job!
  9. amjowens

    Obnoxious classmates that turn into great nurses

    I think some of the best nurses are those who aren't afraid to be different, who do their "own" thing. These are going to be the nurses who advocate for pts, who will do what they believe in, not caring along the way about what people/collegues think of them. It's the nurses who "go along" with mainstream, who are concerned with what people think of them who can easily turn into automatin-type of nurses, not confident to reach beyond their "safe" comfort level. So I can see why the extreme, often socially-unacceptable would turn out to be the best nurses!
  10. amjowens

    Happy, "I love my job!!" stories - do tell...

    I'm in my third semester of my RN program and work full-time as a LPN. I love my job, love school, and wouldn't want to be doing anything other than what I'm doing! There is a lot of negativity not only in nursing, but health care overall. I work very hard at focusing on what I'm doing, day-in-day-out. As I do on this site, I read and listen to the opinions and experiences of others so that I have a basic understanding of what's going on out there, but I stop it there. I hold tight to my goals, and work very hard at meeting mine. I'm an LPN taking it one step at a time to becoming a NP, and so far I'm with a 3.8GPA, in my 3rd semester like I said of RN school, and enjoy my job so much that it doesn't feel like a "job" most days.
  11. I graduated in Dec 2008. I think I was the last graduating class with hope of getting a job after graduation. It was still a struggle, and I ended up getting a job about an hour north of where I live. Since then, I've moved to the area, but I still go to school (for my RN) back where I'm from. A classmate of mine waited to take her NCLEX until May of 2009. She was thinking she needed to study for the exam and was busy in her personal life, so chose to put it off a semester. It's amazing how one semester changed everything! She applied everywhere, still is applying. Right now, she's working at the facility where I am a nurse, but working as a resident care assistant. There's no nursing jobs where I work, but she was willing to take anything even remotely health-related just to have a job and for her resume! It's so sad how the job market is right now. The good new is that just as fast as things changed for the worse, things can change for the better! I volunteered at hospice my last semester of LPN school and this was a topic much talked about in my interview. I highly recommend volunteering if you can't find something.
  12. amjowens

    Relatively new LPN going for RN

    I think it's best to go back asap. I didn't even take my NCLEX yet before starting a regular ADN program, not bridge. I just kept open mind, like all new material so that I didn't get into thinking I "already know". I think that working as a LPN while going to school has been great because I'm out practicing my skills as a nurse while getting intensive, in-depth training on how to expand upon my knowledge/skills. I'm starting my third semester of my program, hope to be finished in Dec 2010. I am so thankful, love what I'm doing. I work full-time and go to school full-time. My classroom courses are online, but clinicals weekly, in addition to skills labs, required hours, etc.
  13. amjowens

    Is it hard to get a part time job at a hospital as an RN

    I don't want to leave my full-time job when I graduate, either! I LOVE working as a LPN in assisted living. I'm able to be the kind of nurse I want to be. I am very independent, able to provide the kind of holistic care that I want to, and enjoy getting to know my "patients". I am in my third semester of RN school and know I need to gain hospital experience because I want to continue on toward my nurse practitioner doctorate. I want to stay in geriatrics though, and dream of being a nurse practitioner for different facilities like the one I work at (and including it). I'd like to stay full-time, or at least 32 hours, where I am, then work part-time in a hospital when I graduate. We never know until we try! I can't believe the way things have worked out and continue to, wouldn't have imagined it two years ago!
  14. amjowens

    Looking for a school.....HELP!!!

    Look into Toledo, OH schools. Lourdes College is in the northern part of Toledo, also Mercy College has an ADN and BSN and is also located relatively close to the border. I work in Ann Arbor, but got my LPN and am starting my third semester of ADN in Toledo. Job opps are better in Michigan, but more schools are in Toledo (or at least, shorter wait lists). Not by chance that too many new grads in Toledo-area, as so many schools.
  15. amjowens

    How many hours do you work?

    I work 40 hours a week. I am in a regular ADN program, not a bridge, and am about to enter my third semester. I have clinical once a week on Monday. My lecture courses are online. I'm taking med-surg II, community health, and mental health. Next semester I'll be with precepting hours to complete along with clinicals. So far the first two semesters I worked full-time and plan to this semester, but with precepting I'll likely cut back to 32 hours? We'll see...I love my job!