Should I just suck it up and take out loans for a private school?


4 years ago I was going to start nursing school but never followed through due to a promotion to management I got at my job. Now I want to go again but do not like what I am reading concerning how competitive the programs are and how hard it is to get in. So.... should I just go for it and take out $60000+ in loans just to fast track my career? The school I want to attend is RCTC in Rochester MN but the way it sounds is that you first get your LPN while taking your gen eds and pre reqs and only then can you apply for the program, not even a guarentee to get in. How about this chamberlain joint? I hear its pricey, but do people get in quickly? Of course, this is assuming I would even be able to get a loan with my awful credit.... what is the general credit score needed to receive a loan? Sorry about the multiple question thread. I'm just so sick of being a truck driver and want to get into the nursing field like I should have four years ago... ahhh well... you live and learn. Oh btw, I'm Kyle and I'm new here, thanks for your help!!!


32 Posts

I go to a private school. Just under 20k for a 18 month program. I like private schools because, no waiting lists, no pre-reqs. You can save yourself a couple years just by going to a private school.

May I ask where this school is and the name? For 20k ill sign up tommorow, I was thinking it was going to cost me $60000+.


32 Posts

California College Institute located in Garden Grove, California.

Does the school go by "Concorde Career College"? I googled the name you gave me and that is what was returned.


32 Posts

The website is It's not high-tech like other schools, but is is a nice school, great environment. Do you live in the area?


376 Posts

Chamberlain is Devry. The corporate ownership of the school gave the nursing arm a different affiliate name to make it sound more appealing, just like they did with their MBA affiliate arm.

This isn't what you want to hear, but if I were you I'd remain as a truck driver until you can start a public nursing program through your community college or state university. Nursing jobs are hard to come by nor do they probably pay $60K/year in MN. If you take out $60K in loans there is a good chance that you (or anybody) will drown in that debt. You can't discharge student loans in bankruptcy. If you can't find a decent job and pay them back, the government can garnish your wages and later your social security. And don't forget all the interest that piles up.

You are really best off working and saving until you can finance nursing school!


49 Posts

The last thing you want to do and trust me on this, is be burdened with $60K in school loans in an uncertain economic environment. The smart play is to find a community college and get your prerequisites completed. I know some people have a stigma associated with community colleges, but at

Moreover, most community colleges offer ADN programs at a fraction of the cost and are a viable alternative to what you are currently contemplating. A buddy of mine quit his job to go to one of those technical schools and it definitely wasn't what he thought it was, or was led to believe. So be prudent and do your due diligence before you commit both your time and money when looking at these schools. Ask about placement assistance, if available. Ask for the names of health care facilities that have hired their graduates. How do their graduates compare with those from other programs. What component(s) of their program justify the premium tuition. Talk to recent graduates of the program. If the school balks at providing any of this information move on my friend. The message here is don't allow rational thought to get lulled into complacency by slick brochures, web sites, raw statistics or power point slides.

If cash flow is an issue for you, then all the more reason to attend a community college. You can qualify for Stafford Loans, Perkins Loans and Pell Grants, which in the aggregate should cover all, or the majority of your educational expenses. The Federal loan programs do not look at an individuals credit; you must however demonstrate financial need as determined by completing the FAFSA. You also have access to State financial aid. Exhaust all these avenues before contemplating taking out personal loans at near-usurious interest rates.

I have been in your shoes. I too transitioned into nursing from another occupation. The first thought one has is to complete the prerequisites and nursing school as quickly as possible. But temper your enthusiasm and look at the big picture. Given the proliferation of nursing programs and limited employment opportunities for current/recent nursing school graduates, you should be in no rush to get through school. I think you are better off taking four years to get through your prerequisites, get through nursing school and enter into an improved job market with little, or no educational debt than to blaze through a program as quickly as possible encumbered with significant debt in perhaps a less than stellar job market. I think time in this instance is your friend.

The reality is that four-years is not a lot of time in the overall scheme of things if this is indeed your true calling and something you are passionate about.

Just my opinion here formulated by my experiences so take it for what it is worth.

Good luck!


156 Posts

Specializes in CNA.

I feel like you are buying a degree when you go to a private school. It is way easier to get into a nursing program when tuition is 60,000 a year then 6,000 a year. Thats what i noticed a lot of people do go private because it is quicker, however at the end of the day there are big loans to pay back. I would be upset if i had a great job and half my salary is going into student loans. But! sometimes we have to do what we have to do. If this is what it takes to make a person dreams come true then go for it.

I was thinking of pootentially getting all my gen eds and pre reqs done at a CC and then taking the nursing program at these private schools.

I would like to add (and apologize for the double post) that I want my BSN not ADN. I'm prepared to spend four years in school (actually 5 when taking pre reqs into account) and I'm fine with the four years. I would not like to spend two years taking pre-nursing courses only to find I have to wait two years, get accepted, and then spend two more years finishing the BSN. Or do I have this all backwards as far as admissions works for a BSN? Isn't it similar to ADN? Just a longer course?


64 Posts

I was thinking of pootentially getting all my gen eds and pre reqs done at a CC and then taking the nursing program at these private schools.

You should look at PBS Frontline's report online about for-profit schools called "College Inc." and then check out the other report called "Educating Sergeant Pantke." These two investigative reports are a must see for anybody considering taking this route. Very informative!!!