Jump to content

Pursuing Nursing - Need Direction

Pre-Nursing   (2,283 Views | 30 Replies)
by southike southike (New) New Pre-Student

200 Profile Views; 7 Posts

I have a non-nursing Bachelor's degree (and an MBA).  I am 35 years old and I'm considering changing careers to Nursing.  What is my best plan of attack? 

1. Get a bachelor's in nursing? 

2. Get a RN certification (w/out BSN)? 

3. Or go for the Master's in Nursing?  

Thank you for your input. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

12 Posts; 108 Profile Views

I also have a non-nursing bachelors and decided to pursue nursing. The ABSN and MENP programs were a great starting point as they took all your previous coursework into consideration and eliminates repeats. 
My ultimate decision was for the MENP as my long term goal is to be a FNP. This will require additional schooling but I’ll be that much closer.

Depending upon your long term goals any of these paths could be feasible for you.

The accelerated programs only take up to two years full-time. Good luck in your decision!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

3 Followers; 37,157 Posts; 98,955 Profile Views

Your best plan of attack is to pursue the course most likely to result in your success. Do your due diligence in researching all programs that you consider. Keep in mind that many who have tried ABSN programs have reported that they have had to “move back” to traditional BSN programs due to being unable to keep pace with the intensity. Don’t bite off more than you can chew if you can avoid it by choosing a “success oriented” program. Education can be enhanced later, while initial licensure can be more elusive to someone without a background foundation, who is trying to catch up so to speak.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

7 Posts; 200 Profile Views

15 hours ago, Kristen Eileen said:

I also have a non-nursing bachelors and decided to pursue nursing. The ABSN and MENP programs were a great starting point as they took all your previous coursework into consideration and eliminates repeats. 
My ultimate decision was for the MENP as my long term goal is to be a FNP. This will require additional schooling but I’ll be that much closer.

Depending upon your long term goals any of these paths could be feasible for you.

The accelerated programs only take up to two years full-time. Good luck in your decision!

Thank you, Kristen.  May I ask which school you are attending for this?  Is it an online program?  Or a physical in-class program?

How much extra schooling will you need after the MENP to become a FNP?  Or maybe I misread your post...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

7 Posts; 200 Profile Views

12 hours ago, caliotter3 said:

Your best plan of attack is to pursue the course most likely to result in your success. Do your due diligence in researching all programs that you consider. Keep in mind that many who have tried ABSN programs have reported that they have had to “move back” to traditional BSN programs due to being unable to keep pace with the intensity. Don’t bite off more than you can chew if you can avoid it by choosing a “success oriented” program. Education can be enhanced later, while initial licensure can be more elusive to someone without a background foundation, who is trying to catch up so to speak.

caliotter3 - That's great advice.  I definitely wound't want to bite off more than I could do.  My biggest hurdle is going to be working while doing this.  I can't stop working.  But I also don't want to be in school for 2 or 3 years just to get a Bachelor's, when I could do the same time and get a MSN.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

12 Posts; 108 Profile Views

1 hour ago, southike said:

Thank you, Kristen.  May I ask which school you are attending for this?  Is it an online program?  Or a physical in-class program?

How much extra schooling will you need after the MENP to become a FNP?  Or maybe I misread your post...

I will be attending Elmhurst College’s MENP Fall cohort. There have been a few students each cohort that continue working - it’s extremely challenging, but doable.  Some other students take out loans to pay for tuition and living expenses while in the program. It’s flexible to allow you to pursue the program in the best possible way for you.

This particular program is onsite but there was also Loyola Hybrid ABSN program where all the lectures would be online and then clinicals / labs are done onsite. Loyola was only for 16 months. 
 

A FNP will be an additional two years after my MENP but many offer online courses that can also be completed part time while working. It’ll take longer, but that’s what my ultimate plan is. I’ll begin working as a RN while taking courses online for a NP certification.

lmk if you have any other questions.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

74 Posts; 567 Profile Views

Start shadowing the areas of Nurse careers that interest you. Then figure out the education level that is best for that specialty.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

606 Posts; 10,911 Profile Views

On 12/26/2019 at 7:02 PM, southike said:

I have a non-nursing Bachelor's degree (and an MBA).  I am 35 years old and I'm considering changing careers to Nursing.  What is my best plan of attack? 

1. Get a bachelor's in nursing? 

2. Get a RN certification (w/out BSN)? 

3. Or go for the Master's in Nursing?  

Thank you for your input. 

As a second (third)-career nurse practitioner with a previous bachelors, I can tell you what I did: I conducted informational interviews and volunteered in some healthcare settings ranging from hospital emergency medicine to home hospice. I decided that I wanted to be a nurse practitioner and the advice I received from many NPs was to first earn my BSN and then gain some RN experience. In hindsight, I found the informational interviews to be helpful, the volunteering experience was mixed, and although there is an ongoing debate about whether NPs should first work as RNs, I don't think it is imperative, although aspects of it may be helpful. 

I think it all depends on what you want to do ultimately. In my BSN program, there were people of all ages (the oldest was a journalist who was almost 50 years old). One of my classmates who was at the time in her 30s already had a BS and MPH, and she is now working in nursing research. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

DowntheRiver has 5 years experience and specializes in Urgent Care, Oncology.

903 Posts; 14,065 Profile Views

RN is not a certification, it is a license. I'm assuming you mean ASN or diploma, but nonetheless thought it should be mentioned. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

7 Posts; 200 Profile Views

7 hours ago, db2xs said:

As a second (third)-career nurse practitioner with a previous bachelors, I can tell you what I did: I conducted informational interviews and volunteered in some healthcare settings ranging from hospital emergency medicine to home hospice. I decided that I wanted to be a nurse practitioner and the advice I received from many NPs was to first earn my BSN and then gain some RN experience. In hindsight, I found the informational interviews to be helpful, the volunteering experience was mixed, and although there is an ongoing debate about whether NPs should first work as RNs, I don't think it is imperative, although aspects of it may be helpful. 

I think it all depends on what you want to do ultimately. In my BSN program, there were people of all ages (the oldest was a journalist who was almost 50 years old). One of my classmates who was at the time in her 30s already had a BS and MPH, and she is now working in nursing research. 

Thank you for your insight, db2xs.  That's really helpful, since you have been where I am.  I can definitely see how working as an RN first would help.  Or at least wouldn't hurt anything.  So even if I get the Master's, I could work as an RN first, right?  Even though I'd be able to be an NP at that point, would I HAVE to?

6 hours ago, DowntheRiver said:

RN is not a certification, it is a license. I'm assuming you mean ASN or diploma, but nonetheless thought it should be mentioned. 

DowntheRiver - You are right.  I didn't know how to say it correctly.  Thanks for clarifying that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

606 Posts; 10,911 Profile Views

33 minutes ago, southike said:

Thank you for your insight, db2xs.  That's really helpful, since you have been where I am.  I can definitely see how working as an RN first would help.  Or at least wouldn't hurt anything.  So even if I get the Master's, I could work as an RN first, right?  Even though I'd be able to be an NP at that point, would I HAVE to?

When you ask, "Even if I get the master's, I could work as an RN first, right?" I am assuming you mean you'd want to get into a direct-entry master's program. From what I understand, the first year is like an accelerated bachelor's but you would not earn a BSN, although you could sit for the NCLEX to obtain your RN license. I don't know if the program would allow you to take a year off to work as an RN before going on to the master's portion; someone who attended a direct-entry program could better answer that. 

But if you truly wanted to be an NP, I would ask you why you would want to work as an RN after graduating from NP school. The duties are different and the majority of the skill set is different as well. You don't have to work as an NP after NP school, but then why go through the trouble of the NP program? Better at that point to just go through a BSN program, work as an RN, and then apply to an NP program. Hope that helps

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

119 Posts; 839 Profile Views

If you want to work as an RN for a while, I would highly recommend going for either an associate's degree, or, if you have an affordable option in your area, an ABSN. 

I know that coming from your background you may view having an MSN as a bigger plus than it really is in nursing (NP MSNs aside). Coming from a similar background as yours, I thought the same. But in nursing, it is more about the license than it is about the number of years you spent on your education. In many places, an RN with an ADN will earn exactly the same salary as an RN with an MSN. I know that's tough to picture coming from a business background. 

Once you get an RN, increasing your education to a BSN or MSN can be done online (again, excepting NP, which can be done mostly online save clinicals), and you can finish a BSN very quickly once you have your RN. I would recommend taking the least expensive route to the RN, then evaluate from there what you need for where you want to work. In some areas, hospitals will require a BSN, but a BSN versus a non-NP MSN will not make much (if any) difference in your salary or ability to get a job. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
×

This site uses cookies. By using this site, you consent to the placement of these cookies. Read our Privacy, Cookies, and Terms of Service Policies to learn more.