Should I go back to the military?

Specialties Government


I am currently working as RN, BSN at a stepdown unit, just started my orientation a week ago. I served in the Army National Guard for 6 years, and just got out last year. I still have 1 year in-active duty left on my contract. So, I got a call from SSG (cant remember his last name) just recently and said that there's a E5 position available for my MOS in the military is 68S (Preventive Medicine Specialist). It's going to be a medical detachment unit.

My question is, should I go back to the military for that position? My thought is that if I do go back, I would gain more leadership experience which could help in meeting my future career goal. This is part-time obviously, so I would do nursing while being in the reserve. I would like to pursue some type of Master Program (CRNA or maybe NP) in the near future, so would this be a good path for me to follow? I am thinking after I gain 2 years of RN exp, I could possibly try out the Nurse Corps, but I haven't thoroughly researched my option on that yet.... So I was wondering if I could get any advice on the best possible approach to meet my goal. Should I work as RN first for two years while being in the military or should I do direct commission?

PS- I forgot to mention that I have 2 year contract with the hospital.

something to think about is what you are going to do your advanced degree in...if you are going to CRNA you will need to get into a high intensity ICU asap. depending on which NP you look at doing, they also may have preferences for where you have your nursing experience at...

good luck

Specializes in School Nurse; ICU.

I am not understaning this-if you have a BSN why would you only be an E5? With that much college you should be an officer...something doesn't sound right. I would definitely go back to the recruiter because I don't think that you are getting a fair deal. Again, something isn't right for a BSN to be an E5...

I agree with Cav5. Many of us here on the forum that have or are working on our BSN are aiming to be selected as officers. I am not sure how many years you have been working as an RN, BSN, but you would likely go in *above* an O-1 from what I understand if you have a lot of experience under your belt.

I have been told specifically that someone may try to recruit us as enlisted and that we should respectfully decline if we want to pursue the Nurse Corps and speak to health care recruiters instead.

You have to figure out what works best for you, but it might make more sense for you to direct commission when you are ready in a few years than to go now as a 68S. Is an RN required to be a Preventive Medicine Specialist?

Best of luck!

Specializes in Nursing Education.

I would consider going in as an officer and getting the experience and leadership you need there. You will not be functioning as an RN as an E5.

I do not see the benefit of an RN going to the military as an enlisted member. If you were to return to the Nurse Corps, that is a different matter. You would not be receiving the same leadership experience as an E5 working as a specialist, that you could automatically claim with an officer's commission, working as a nurse.

BTW, the recruiter would be doing a better sell by you, if he were sending you down the path to a commission. He is only looking for another recruit with this offer, not looking out for your best interests.

Specializes in ER, ICU.

Commission as a nurse. You will enhance your nursing career and skills at the same time. I would call a different recruiter, this one is not looking out for you (are they ever?) Your hospital contract will allow you to figure it out. You can continue to work there of course, if you stay in the Guard.

It's easier to get in on the enlisted side right now because the nurse corps is full. However, you're a very competitive candidate considering you already have your degree and you have experience. If I were you, I'd aim high and try to commission. If you've spent the last 6 years enlisted in the Guard, you know that it's better for officers, and deploying as a nurse is nothing compared to deploying as an enlisted member.

Also, if you have plans to develop professionally (as you mentioned), if you enter as an RN officer, the military will be willing to assist your education to develop your AOC (MOS equilvalent). As an enlistee, yes, you can advance your RN education, but the focus from the military won't be on developing you as an RN because that's not what you'll be to them. Your professional development will be much more on you to accomplish and will take more funds from your pocket and time from your work as an enlistee. Also, once you're enlisted in an MOS for a contracted amount of time, it's hard if not impossible to back out and/or switch, especially to a commissioned AOC.

Come to the dark side. We have stethoscopes. And occasionally, cookies.

For what it's worth, I know a captain who absolutely loves their medical career in the army.

Specializes in NICU.

I agree that you should inquire about commissioning.

Specializes in CCRN, TNCC, CEN, CFN, CNOR, CMSRN.

I read in one of the comments that ANG nursing was full. Currently in the Navy Nurse Corps reserve we're at 80% manned. Some food for though. Go Navy - Beat Army.

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