Salem State Direct Entry Taking Vacation


I have been accepted into the 2010 Salem State College's Direct entry program, and My husband and I have reservation to go away for a week, in October. It is his only vacation time and it costs a small fortune. If any one has attended this program, will I miss a lot of class time and risk my grades, or are instructors willing to work with students in this kind of situation? I believe if flow-sheet is up to date I will be taking, Nur712 and 2 other classes.


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Specializes in Home Care.

You should contact their nursing program directly to find out what their absentee policy is. I wouldn't book a vacation before doing this.


14,633 Posts

Nursing programs in general, direct entry or otherwise, don't allow much leeway for absences -- even for emergencies, let alone a "vacation." I would definitely check with the school before making any firm plans. The first, basic-nursing, year of the direct-entry programs is extremely intense and fast-paced, from what I've heard, and I doubt it would be possible to choose to miss a week.


8 Posts

Reservation is already booked,and is a non-refundable flight. I am so worried, my husband works very hard and deserves a yearly vacation, but will I be sacrificing my grade? Will professor accommodate circumstance?


634 Posts

Specializes in ICU. Has 1 years experience.

At the accelerated program I'm applying to, they allow 1 clinical absence and 4 classroom absences each semester, regardless of reason, before you automatically have to repeat the semester. It doesn't matter what your grades are.

Contact an advisor of your program to see what their policy is, if they have one.

I hope you get to go with him!

You need to contact the school, no one on this site can answer that question for you, but the school. However, from what I've heard, yes, you could possibly jeopardize your grade. I start an accelerated msn program in the fall, and we can't even work, let alone schedule in a weeks vacation. And it will be your first semester, do you really want to risk missing a weeks worth of accelerated work and clinicals? Even if the school allows it, will you, as a student, be able to make up that lost time? I'm sure you don't want to have to study or stress over school during your vacation with your hubby. So, it seems like a lot of sacraficing on both ends.

I guess the best thing would've been to refrain from scheduling any commitments that would require time away until you knew you were accepted into the program. But can't change that now, since the trip is already booked. Again, you need to contact the school and then you'll know what to do - and it may mean hubby going on vacation alone or chalking the money up to a loss, because nursing school should take priority over a vacation. Just my opinion. Good luck.

Specializes in PMHNP, Faculty,. Has 14 years experience.

I don't want to scare you, but I hope you bought travel insurance. I completed the Salem State DEP program and October is going to be a really really rough time to take a week off - assuming they would even really allow it. You have a one semester accelerated Med Surg class, Pharmacology and a theory class. You will miss one-two clinicals depending on which group you are in (one or two days/week) and probably at least one exam. If you luck out and there are no exams the week you're gone I can guarantee there will be the first week you are back - meaning you can not relax. I have to tell you that your grades probably will take a hit if you go - I only took one weekend off from school/studying that entire semester (to be in a wedding) and that was pushing it. Good luck! PM me with any specific questions.


8 Posts

Well, I am disappointed. My husband said, "you won't be going to Key West with me?" "just kidding." I won't be taking our annual vacation, will be out about a thousand in non-refundable airfare and deposits. I sure hope this program is worth it. I have NEVER fell behind when I've missed classes during our annual October's VACA. I am going into this program with 100%, I have never take grad level classes prior and wondered how the direct entry class prep. compares to past undergrad class prep?

Specializes in PMHNP, Faculty,. Has 14 years experience.

It's faster than undergrad, meaning that you are learning at 2-3x the speed. For example, instead of 2-3 semesters of med surg (like an undergrad program) you will have one - but will be responsible for learning all of the same material - they don't leave stuff out. This means you will have very frequent exams on huge amounts of material you have to really understand in order to succeed. You will be reading hundreds of pages a week and should really be able to critically think about all of it. The exam questions will not be asking you to regurgitate what you have been taught, but rather testing you on whether you have really assimilated all of the new information and placed it in correct context with everything you have learned before. Nursing exams are truly unlike any other exams I have ever seen before, and you will have a couple of tough (but wonderful) professors. That's what makes it so tough.

As far a what makes the DEP graduate level, I guess the part that will have the biggest impact on you is the amount of papers you will write. Every semester you will have a Correlation Paper for each nursing class - it's essentially a detailed look at one of your patients - and they are around 30 pages in length. They take a bit of time to write, and are (again) used to test your critical thinking. Also, for theory type classes you will have multiple papers due each semester, weekly reading, projects and weekly "discussions" on the online classroom - again, time consuming.


14,633 Posts

I have never take grad level classes prior and wondered how the direct entry class prep. compares to past undergrad class prep?

Well, consider that your program will be covering in that first year the same content that conventional nursing programs cover in two or three years. I attended grad school (as a traditional, experienced-RN student) at a program that also had a direct-entry, non-nurse program, and I became friends with a number of the direct-entry students (my classmates had completed the first, "basic nursing" year and were now in the traditional MSN courses with me). They were visibly, obviously still in shock from the first year, and described it as, between the class & clinical time and the studying required outside of class, six 16-hour days a week for a year. (I don't know if that's representative of all direct-entry programs -- the traditional MSN program was also more rigorous and demanding than most traditional MSN programs.)


68 Posts

I have heard that most nursing programs are very strict about absences. I mean most schools have a waiting list or many people that were turned down in your favor. I agree that you and your husband should be able to take a vacation but I wouldn't expect much sympathy from your professors or fellow classmates. Especially in a graduate level atmosphere.