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Which way to get to RN (long)

Pre-Nursing   (569 Views 5 Comments)
by Harry&Ruthfan Harry&Ruthfan (New Member) New Member

379 Visitors; 2 Posts

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So after 15 years of wishy-washiness I have finally figured out that I want to be a nurse. One day it just popped into my head :idea: it just made perfect sense.Here's my dilemma, I am a 32 year old mother of 3. They will all be in school full-time in the fall of 2011. I was thinking that this would be a good time to go back to school. My problem is that I don't know which way to take this.

When I was just out of high school back in '96 I was working in a LTC. I was a valet (make bed, fill water, take residents to activities, meals etc.) for about a year and they offered free CNA training. Of course after the training was over I decided I wanted to do more, I wanted to help and become a CNA. But the next training wasn't for another 6 months. Here's where I want to go back in time and slap some sense into my younger self. Well, I worked as a 'CNA' for about 3 months and they were going to pay for me to go to the Community college (where I was already going) and take the courses there. But what happened? I was too scared of the commitment and decided to quit the job AND after breaking up with my fiancé' I decided I would take a 'break' from school. HA! A 15 year break!

I just recently went back to get my transcript from my old cc in CO and realized that my younger self was very naive :confused: (never talking to a guidance counselor! *insert time-traveling slap*) I only have about 15 credits that could be worth transferring out of the 36 that I took. If they are still valuable after all this time!

Sooo, I was wondering if I should get certified as a CNA or PCT, get a job, then go on to LPN school and then get transferred into NJ Brookdale CC Nursing program (thinking it will be easier getting in to the program being and LPN) or if I should just try to transfer my credits, finish my generals and go on to become an RN through the nursing program that way? Also one more thing is that my husband's business isn't doing very well, the worst it's ever been in this economy. So I may need to get a better paying job (CNA certified?) sooner than later. I know with time constraints of family and a pt job this is going to take a while but I'm wondering what the better option is? I will have to have a pt job while in school and being a mom. Any advice would be so much appreciated. And sorry this is such a long post. Thanks for taking the time to read. :redbeathe

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iPink has 5+ years experience and works as a Mother/Baby Nurse.

12,520 Visitors; 1,412 Posts

Hi there:

I'm glad you are finally take this time to asses and commit to getting that nursing career started.

Now, I would get certified as a CNA first so you can start working while attending school for the nursing school requirements. I would go for the RN. You may want to look into schools from now, so you can get started. Also, a lot of programs want certain science credits to be no more than 10 years old, so you have to look if your credits are transferable. Start with the CC near you and find out their requirements for all three: CNA, LPN, and RN programs.

Based on the info you've given, working as a CNA will give you some insight in the healthcare industry and help you decide if nursing is what you really want to do in life. I've applied to a couple of RN programs for the Spring 2011, and in the meantime, while taking a few additional classes, I'm trying to get into a CNA program.

You're never to old to go into nursing, so don't think about age. There are way too many inspirational stories on here of people starting nursing in their 40s and 50s.

So it's essentially up to you what path you feel comfortable with:

1) CNA-->LPN-->RN

2) LPN-->RN

3) Work straight towards the RN

Good luck.

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Justanotherday works as a Housewife.

2,978 Visitors; 254 Posts

I thought I would become a CNA and do that part time while working through my prereqs, but the course at my community college was about $1,800 so it was out of my price range (financial aid will not cover "Continuing Education" classes). My husband's business is also slow. I qualified for financial aid which covers my classes and books completely. We also have young children at home, and I have been very happy with the flexibility of evening/weekend/online classes available. At the moment I work retail on the weekends.

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472 Visitors; 2 Posts

I was an LPN instructor for 15 years. I also was a young mom before that. I made some bad decisions and cost myself the ability to advance in an efficient manner. So this is a couple pieces to think about.

Financial aid is very available for nursing students at this point in time. It is a goo time to take advantage of that. For that reason you may consider a nursing path. Some states allow lpn students who have finished a portion of the program to become nursing assistants (PCT) I do not know if that will be the case in your state. If so, and money is a concern and you need to work, check into several lpn schools and see if this is the case. When you decide to move on for your RN you will then have the ability to make a fairly decent wage and have some flexibility with scheduling around school. I have seen many of my students take this path. But each situation is different....but please do your homework.

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379 Visitors; 2 Posts

Thank you all so much for your insight. I really appriciate it. I will definitely look into all these options. :)

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