Work a hard job as a PCT, or stay at my cushy jobs?

Nursing Students General Students


I am in a full-time BSN program and I currently work in a relief position at a local hospital. I work in what is essentially a Ronald McDonald house, where families who have patients in the hospital can stay. I get a guaranteed six hours every other week with random 16-24 hour shifts interspersed. Some months I'll only work 12 hours and other months I'll work 60-80. The job is incredibly easy, I get to study/do homework almost the entire time, and the pay is ~10.50/hr, depending on shift diff. In addition to this I nanny/babysit about 10-15 hours per week (again, this varies) for $12-16/hour, and it's typically pretty easy as well.

A relief position opened up as a PCT in the post-partum unit and I applied for it. The interview went really well but I won't know until Monday or Tuesday if I got the job. If I get the job, I'll most likely be able to keep my other relief job, so I'll have two jobs within the hospital. The PCT job is a guaranteed 12 hours per pay period, but will most likely have 2-4 12 hour shifts throughout the pay period. The shifts will be night and day shifts, and I'm not sure about the pay. Unlike my other two jobs, this one will be a lot of work but has the potential to be a budgeted job so I can get reimbursed for school.

This is my dillemma: if offered, do I take the PCT job and work the two relief jobs while cutting back on babysitting, or do I stay where I am? I would really like the experience of the PCT job and am a hard worker and love being busy at work, but I'm worried it could cut into my school work during the semester if I am working that much without the ability to study at work. I've been able to work mostly full time this semester (sometimes 60+ hours/week) and am going into finals with all my classes at a 98% or better grade, but am heading into my second semester, which is notoriously the hardest. So I'm torn between keeping my cushy jobs where I can do schoolwork and get paid good money, or work hard, get experience, and potentially get school paid for.

For those of you that worked as a PCT/CNA during nursing school, do you think it benefited you in the end? Is it worth it for me to take the job for the experience, or just stay where I am with my focus on learning the material for school? I will ultimately want to be a nurse at the hospital I work at and think that being an employee with them for so long (whether it is patient-related or not) is good either way, so I'm not sure if it would be worth it to be a PCT if it will make me have to work much harder in school and have the potential to affect my grades. (I will most likely continue with schooling after being a nurse for 5-7 years to be an NP, so it's important to keep my GPA up.)

If you read my book of a post, thank you! Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

If u really need experience ,u do pct will help u in nursing.

work hard play hard man. majority of the students don't really work in nursing school so they compete with volunteering and getting good grades for when they graduate. Myself on the other hand works as a CNA/transport tech at a trauma hospital and I get to see a lot and do a lot where it benefits me while in school. It helps you a lot on the clinical portion so all you need to do is focus on learning the material. I would go for the experience because in the end it will help you get a job and help you in school, along with making you a well established nurse.

Specializes in Hospital Education Coordinator.

the experience is good, but your REAL objective is to finish school and get that degree/license. So if any job interferes with your goal, it is not a good job for you right now.

I say f you can do it do it ! but don't overwork yourself and forget about your studies

Thanks everyone! I definitely wouldn't let it interfere with school. I know what my focus is!

Leonard, I think you make a great point. I recently went to a Student Nurses Association meeting and a lot of the students who are graduating this semester were talking about how they've never had a job! My jaw dropped and I couldn't believe it, but then I realized there are very few people who are working in my cohort either.

Still waiting on the call about whether I get the job or not, so for now it's just a waiting game!

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