View Full Version : considering a career in nursing.


blankenstein
11-18-2008, 03:36 PM
hello everyone. obviously, i'm new here.

i just wanted to get some feedback as to what the best route would be to become a nurse, and what kind of options are out there. i'm a 26 year old guy, and got my BA in communications in may '08. a bout a week after graduation, i broke my knee in a motorcycle accident and was basically on my butt until the end of september. as i'm sure everyone knows, that's about when the economy really started to take a dive, and i've been job hunting and not seeing anything even relatively close to what i'd like to do.

luckily, i have an awesome family and my parents are encouraging me and willing to help me go back to school and do something that i WOULD like to do. i've always had a deep admiration and respect for the health field and have really been thinking about getting into nursing. i'm just sort of confused about what the best way to go about it would be.

i live in the los angeles area, so there are a lot of good schools i could go to, my main question is this: should i go directly into an RN program, such as getting a BSN or a master's entry RN program, or would it be better to work from the bottom up, starting as an LVN/CNA and going from there to get my RN after i've had some experience?

and what're the pros and cons of working in some of the specialized nursing positions? some of the options, like becoming a travel nurse, seem appealing, but i don't know any nurses personally, so i really am taking a stab in the dark here.

thanks in advance for reading this long freakin' post and i appreciate any help you're all willing to give!

P/J
11-18-2008, 06:11 PM
Hi and welcome to NV. I'll tell you my story and you can take from it what you will (not that I'm in Australia). I lost my job in 2006, I was a scientist for a food lab. I had been interested in changing my career for about a year before, and it all happened just before applications closed for University courses in Australia, so it was kind of good timing.

I went straight for a RN course, which was accelerated allowing me to do the three years in only two. We are able to work in the nursing field as we get skills, so after our first clinical block (7 weeks of clinical) we are able to do personal care, so some people in the class started working as patient care attendants. After two years worth of study we can register as ENs (LVN, LPN, etc) as we study to complete the last year and register as RNs. I liked this way, as I hate working as an EN at the moment (due to limitations on my practice) and to convert up to RN is another two years. I also had enough trouble going back to school once, let alone again after that for RN.

Don't worry about specialties now, what you see on TV is not always how it works. As a junior nurse you will generally get fairly stable patients at the start, so no matter where you work you won't have much trouble. As you study you should get the chance to move around different wards and hospitals and experience the different styles of nursing. As I was doing my course I found that I preferred surgical nursing over medical, children over adults, and loved wounds. I was hoping to get a job in wound care, or surgical nursing. I have been offered a job in short stay surgical unit (We apply within our state for hospitals and get placed according to our preferences and an interview with the hospital).

To work in Emergency, ICU, Theater (in Australia) they prefer for you to have experience and post graduate qualifications. If you wanted to travel nurse these are kind of a must as they show that you have the skills, also keep your portfolio up to date.

Hope this is of help.:idea2:

Pal
11-18-2008, 10:41 PM
I am in Cali/Sanjose,

I STRONGLY SUGGEST CNA and work within the Hospital for awhile. I have done things the HARD WAY by stepping to the Xtreme challenge and entered RN program after 2 yrs wait list. I am failing not due to CLINICALS but CRITICAL thinking on the EXAMS.

The Nursing INSTRUCTORS are not your regular INSTRUCTOR they DO NOT grade on the curve or drop the lowest exams ect. There is NO MERCY because these instructors take the PROFESSION VERY SERIOUSLY and will love to fail you, even if you lack in motivation.

During this semester, I knew some students that were repeating with me from previous semester and new students that were dropped because they could not pass clinicals, or dosage calculation, or like me the CRITICAL thinking exams ect.

Thus I am going to repeat LEVEL 1 and woooh having FUN. Now I will be the PREVIOUS semester student :pound:
Check out this website http://www.versant.org/
My background: (Served in US Army as LT) JUST HATED IT...
My education: BS Biology.

blankenstein
11-18-2008, 11:41 PM
it seems that the CNA route is the consensus from some of the stuff i've heard on another forum.

so, assuming i DID become a CNA and enjoy the work, is it still just as difficult to get into an RN program? will having CNA experience get me into an RN program any quicker, and would it take care of some of the prerequisites necessary to get into said program? and one last question - would i receive any financial help from the hospital/clinic/whatever i'm working at to get my RN, or would that still be completely on me?

thanks again for the help!

Pal
11-19-2008, 01:32 AM
First of RN is not the same as CNA. However, you will learn a great deal about nursing because you are helping the NURSE.

Second, RN pre-requisite are the following in Cali/Sanjose: Anatomy Physiology, Microbiology, Human Nutrition, Intro Psychology, Developmental Psychology, English 101/102, and General Core requirement for Associates. AND than you wait for 2 years THAN you start 1-2 years RN program, and take NCLEX exam to get license. A LONG ROAD :egg:

CNA requirement: Basic English, pass 50 hr lecture, and do 100 hrs clinical, and get license. It takes a semester. VALUABLE EXPERIENCE. FROM there you can apply to LVN and that is more transitional than RN. RN WILL drive you nuts if you don't hear my advice. TRUST ME, I did it the HARD WAY. DON'T do what I DID. OR ELSE IT WILL drive you NUTS.
Also you cannot work during the RN program, its just not possible. One feels LIKE A HOMELESS person during the RN program. The RN absorbs all your energy and time. You are constantly busy throughout the time. You need to turn in assignments, VERY PAINFUL CARE PLANS that may consist of filling out over 40 pages due to a patient taking BLOODY 40 medications ect...for each medication you need a med card filled out, in addition to the 40 pages, there are assesment pages dealing with each major system of the body's abnormalities, and pathophysiology of each disorder of your ASSIGNED patient. THESE CARE PLANS are turned in every week of the clinical.

Moreover, my classmates are former Medical Techs, medical assistants, and LVNs. AND THEY HAVE GOOD CONFIDENCE. It annoys me when they shoot out their DAMM mouth, everytime the intructor asks a question. I don't even have the moment to think before they response. I HATE IT :pound:

Third, since NURSING is a VERY HOT proffession, there are MANY hospitals that offer educational grants for upgrade training, provided that you sign a contract of usually (2) years after finishing the training. You may need to call the hospital's HUMAN RESOURCES and they will have this information :pepsi:

I don't like to scare you but if you don't have any familarity of CLINICAL experience from hospitals, you will be knocked out on the first round of the RN program :boxing:

JacquiBee
11-21-2008, 05:49 AM
Working in patient care would help you in your nursing. You'll learn if you like caring for and working with people. Nursing is a hard job and tough training, so it is worth checking out how you like that kind of work. One thing that is important to remember is nursing is very intimate work, your sharing some of the most intimate things with patients not just providing them with physical care and assisting with bodily functions but with life experiences of illness, pain, sadness, grief, loss, joy and many others. I find it the most satisfiying job, I love it even when it drives me crazy. I really love people, I find them facinating, I get to care for young and old (mostly old) and I learn something from every one of them. I want them to feel I care, that I respect them and I try to offer the best nursing care every day to all my patients. That means I have to like my job or I just couldn't bring that every day. Blankenstein, that you are thinking about this probably means you do think you want to do this job and I wish you the best of luck, you might end up like me, if a patient says Oh Im sorry you have to help me to the bathroom I can say back how lucky am I to have a job where I get to help people and be nice to them all day and get paid for it.:proud:

Pal
11-21-2008, 11:24 AM
I don't think helping somebody w/ bodily care is intimate :proud:
The trick is that DON'T make it a BIG DEAL. IN THE ARMY I had akward situations where I had to share a common shower with several men. I got useto of it because I DID NOT make it a BIG DEAL. I only wish they were females. :knuddel:

What is HARD about NURSING is the LEGAL responsibility for the PATIENT's intensive care. Assisting the SURGEONS ect...My Nurse instructor frightens me when she reminds about how responsible the nurse is when she makes CRITICAL decisions about Patient CARE in the ICU or any fast pace critical unit.

runningnurse
11-21-2008, 01:05 PM
I don't think helping somebody w/ bodily care is intimate :proud:
The trick is that DON'T make it a BIG DEAL. IN THE ARMY I had akward situations where I had to share a common shower with several men. I got useto of it because I DID NOT make it a BIG DEAL. I only wish they were females. :knuddel:

What is HARD about NURSING is the LEGAL responsibility for the PATIENT's intensive care. Assisting the SURGEONS ect...My Nurse instructor frightens me when she reminds about how responsible the nurse is when she makes CRITICAL decisions about Patient CARE in the ICU or any fast pace critical unit.

Actually it is in ANY patient situation. As a Nurse you hold these people's life in your hands and as gross as it may be you get your respect for someone's life and who they are when you are a mile high in their poo becuase they have CDiff or other bug thats floating around. Going into Nursing with a CNA background is good as long as you're cognizant of the fact that the roles you play will be very different from each other.
Best of luck to you!

blankenstein
11-21-2008, 03:17 PM
i appreciate the input everyone's giving me. yeah, i've always been interested in jobs that would either help or entertain people. i know that becoming a nurse wouldn't necessarily mean i'm going to be entertaining every patient, especially if i have to put in a catheter.

i also realize that being a CNA and being an RN are two very different things, but it seems that being a CNA would only take about a semester at school and though i wouldn't be doing the same exact work as an RN, i'd imagine i'd get a good idea of what an RN does. am i right? or will i be in for a rude awakening should i take the CNA route?

runningnurse
11-21-2008, 03:51 PM
You'll get a glimpse of what an RN does, but truly until you actually work as an RN you won't get the full gist of it. Being a CNA through school will not only solidify your patient care skills but also allow you to hone those observation skills and as you go along in school, you might be able to do more at your facility (if they allow it). I know that in British Columbia, we actually have a great program where student nurses get to work in the hospital as a Employed Student Nurse, they get 2/3 patients depending on strength and work as a nurse basically-while still being guided with an RN; they are eligible to do this after their 2nd year.
On a side note you said you wanted to be able to entertain people-every consider recreational therapy??
Go with the CNA route and you'll feel much more comfortable with your practice as you develop into a nurse!:D

Sun
11-22-2008, 08:31 PM
Why do u think she had a brain fart? what caused this? :pepsi:

blankenstein
11-23-2008, 02:43 AM
hey Pal, i give a lot of respect to people who enlist in the military and put their lives on the line for the good of the country. enlisting is a brave and selfless act, but you ought to have a little more respect for people, especially if you're planning on becoming a nurse. calling people racist crap probably isn't going to sit well with people here.

didn't you serve with any black people? have some respect for your fellow soldiers, even if you can't muster it up for your fellow man.

Julie
11-23-2008, 08:59 AM
Abusive and racist language is not welcome on this site. What is more, such posts are unprofessional and unbecoming to nurses or those who say they wish to become nurses and will not be tolerated.

Pal
11-23-2008, 02:57 PM
If you understand I did not use racism for labeling but to display my FRUSTRATION over some irritating Nurse Instructors who play with the minds of the innocent.


My clinical instructors are lucky that I was an LT in the US ARMY and therefore dealth with several dissappointments, and got useto of it. If this was a civilian they would have dealth it in a VERY unpleasent way. :proud:

However, I realize the extent of this and I appologize for my STUPIDITY.



Please forgive me if you guys didn't understand the CONTEXT of the literature where the wording is used.

I am NOT RACIST. RACISM is in DIRECT name calling. I did not do that. Ofcourse I used the TERROR wording by mistake but back in my remote town this is VERY COMMON practice when displaying frustration.

runningnurse
11-23-2008, 07:59 PM
It still boggles my mind how you can be so negative towards your clinical instructors. Yes, you have a right to be frustrated, but to go off on a racist rant- and it isn't only direct name calling as you state-even your title of your last post is offensive to me (a "white" person). In Nursing (and in LIFE) you need to treat everyone the same way and to separate people into "colored" and "white" is being racist. Despite the tint of our skin everyone deserves to be treated fairly and equally, your comments about these clinical instructors was not. :pound:
In Nursing one needs to look at the people they are/will be taking care of as someone in their family, basically thinking to themselves:hmmmm: "Is this how I would want my grandparent/parent etc to be treated??"
Maybe it is a good thing that you will not be nursing right away, because even though you have many years of service for our country (which is respectable)under your belt you obviously have not grasped the concept of caring for your fellow man and the reason behind going to war which is as I understand it, to protect the civil liberties of the US/world. I would be scared to have to work with a nurse that carries your attitude. :swordfight:

Pal
11-23-2008, 10:10 PM
Ok,
I have made my appologie. Please, I will not go over this again. :call2:

The word "color" and the word "white" simply means that some of us are different color than others. Just like we label orange, pear, banana, grapes, and so on.... We don't call all fruits oranges. :shakehands:

There is no racism in that statement, this is becoming rediculous. I got scientifically BUSSIER things to do than debate about some BORING subject on RACISM. Only some LOSER in SOCIOLOGY or some other WASTED degree talks about RACISM for a LIVING. :sleep:

JacquiBee
11-24-2008, 12:38 AM
i appreciate the input everyone's giving me. yeah, i've always been interested in jobs that would either help or entertain people. i know that becoming a nurse wouldn't necessarily mean i'm going to be entertaining every patient, especially if i have to put in a catheter.

You will bring that love of entertaining with you to your nursing, just as we all bring our own personalities and style. I am a bit of a show off and I love to make my patients laugh. I often tell them "well you are my captive audience" Humour can be healing if you don't do it just for your own satisfaction. Its part of treating the whole person. It can break the ice and help develop the theraputic rapport and relationship you'll need. It can also help to distract someone if they feel in pain or sad. I might even possiblly be silly with a patient while catheterising them if it was ok with them and maybe they started it and not going to compromise their care (it's amazing what little old ladies will be silly about) You sound like you'll be fun to have on the ward when you graduate.

Pal
11-24-2008, 02:15 AM
Maybe it is a good thing that you will not be nursing right away, because even though you have many years of service for our country, you have not grasped the concept of caring for your fellow man and the reason behind going to war which is as I understand it, to protect the civil liberties of the US/world.[/COLOR] I would be scared to have to work with a nurse that carries your attitude. :swordfight:

You don't have to be scared of me. Be scared of throwing judgments on others without thinking. :tomato:
I am sad to hear that you don't want me to be a nurse. :(
Ofcourse I cannot change your opinion about me. However, I don't appreciate it when you say that "going to war is about protecting civil liberties of the US/world" obviously you have never seen a war. A naive child, you are. I have seen bodies of Iraqis torn from the waist and labels put on them saying "this is what happens when you F*** with US" I don't see this as protecting civil liberty but rather taking away and causing the reason for civil liberty. I am not PROUD of what I did. I have nightmares not about the war but about my best friends I lost. Everytime I smell gasoline, it takes me back to Iraq and the horrible dismantled bodies of many NON-COMBATANTS. I was a Lieutenant in the US Army and I HATED IT because I saw many things, I wish I was NOT BORN to see. This type of exsistence sucks. :creep:

Julie
11-24-2008, 03:20 AM
It feels to me Pal that you have many issues to work through. I am sure you will make a great nurse, but there is something that you will have to deal with here. As nurses we are expected to care for and to treat people who live their lives in ways we do not like. We do not have to condone their behaviours but we do have to care for them without judgement. We have to keep our opinions on them to ourselves and we have to get over our personal and moral views.

Pal
11-24-2008, 03:32 PM
It feels to me Pal that you have many issues to work through. As nurses we are expected to care for and to treat people who live their lives in ways we do not like. We have to keep our opinions on them to ourselves and we have to get over our personal and moral views.


Who said I got issues? You ungrateful COWARDS can never understand this because you are too INFERIOR and living off your own selfish gains. I wish the Gov't could throw people like you in force labor camps. :pound:

People like you think that they have the RIGHT to reap the benefits of the SOCIETY, for which many have SELF-SACRIFICED. I AM DISGUSTED by all of you. I am MUCH BETTER MAN than any of you SISSIES. :motz:

AND NOW, you are going to teach ME ABOUT CARE. Well excuse me CIVILIAN Julie, I didn't ask for your MORAL guidance or your blessings. Being a Soldier and an Officer displays an XTREME degree of MORALITY and GREAT commitment under great DANGER. What are you, some 3rd CLASS Nurse in UK? You know I have a lot more administrative experience than you could ever imagine. :star:

blankenstein
11-24-2008, 05:06 PM
Pal, man... you do have issues. no one's trying to take away from the fact that you enlisted and served your country. yes, what you did was brave, and i'm sure you sacrificed a lot. i've had family in the military, so i know that no matter what, enlisting means sacrifice.

that being said, look at how you react to everything. you don't like the fact that you weren't doing great in your RN courses, so you use racist slurs to insult the instructors who are only doing their job; to ensure that they produce nurses who are going to be able to do the job. you have no right to say that crap about them because you failed to do your part. study harder and try again.

secondly, you claim that we're all inferior cowards, and that you're a much better man than any of us sissies. no offense, but with that kind of attitude, you probably shouldn't be trying to get into nursing. you need to drop that kind of "holier than thou" attitude. there aren't a whole lot of careers that are going to take kindly to someone who's so quick to verbally abuse everyone.

just my two cents. don't take this like i'm trying to antagonize you, i'm just trying to show you that you're being incredibly insulting.

*prepares for flame*

Pal
11-24-2008, 09:23 PM
First of I am not incredibly insulting. I cannot tolerate people that are nuisance to me. I am a dog that bites not barks :ahhhhh:

Second of all, I know how to take care of myself and I don't need Julie's moral teaching because I am a better HUMAN than her.

I AM A CITIZEN OFFICER SOLDIER OF THE US ARMY. :proud:

On the other hand, I am incredibly insulted when you say that I am "holier than thou" I consider YOUR attitude as a blasphemy. :motz: Your blasphemy attitude is DEMONIC. Your soul is as naked and shameless like the DEVIL. You will never receive redemption. :(

blankenstein
11-24-2008, 10:12 PM
First of I am not incredibly insulting. I cannot tolerate people that are nuisance to me.

Second of all, I know how to take care of myself and I don't need Julie's moral teaching because I am a better HUMAN than her.

On the other hand, I am incredibly insulted when you say that I am "holier than thou" Your blasphemy attitude is DEMONIC. Your soul is as naked and shameless like the DEVIL.

please tell me how calling people racist names and calling us cowards isn't insulting. then explain to me how being insulting the way you have makes you a better human than julie, who has done nothing but attempt to be helpful. you DO have a holier than thou attitude given that you compare yourself to the rest of us and have the nerve to call yourself a better human. please explain how i am demonic and shameless like the devil. i haven't insulted anyone. i came here to seek help from people who work in the field, whom i give a lot of respect to.

i'm amazed that you've spent time in the military but have yet to learn respect. you really ought to rethink your decision to get into health care. if you "can't tolerate people who are a nuisance" to you, then why would you get into nursing? do you think your patients are going to put on song and dance numbers for you? no, they're going to be in pain and they're going to need you to care for them. a lot of the times, their needs might grate on your nerves. are you going to call THEM racist crap and tell them that you're a better human than them?

blankenstein
11-25-2008, 01:10 AM
"I did not insult anyone." is immediately followed with "WHY CAN'T your THICK PUBIC-haired skull get it RIGHT."

that's an insult. and you may not have MEANT for it to be racist, but you used the infamous n-word. it doesn't matter what context you use that word in, it's racist. no one's jumping to conclusions, the conclusion is plain as day: you used a word, and the word is racist. you don't want to be labeled as such, don't use the word. simple as that.

i don't know where you got the idea that i thought your time in the army was a vacation. if i remember right, i commended you for doing your duty and said that i realized you had to make sacrifices. no one thinks the army is a damn vacation.

i'm not trying to jump on anyone's bad side, i'm trying to get you to realize how what you say appears to everyone else. do not call me an idiot, because i'm not.

Pal
11-25-2008, 01:32 AM
I have already apologized for what you thought was RACIST is simply a misunderstanding. :pepsi:

YOU NEED TO HAVE A CLEAR MIND to read the context of the literature and understand my TRUE intentions. Your RACIALLY PERVERTED BRAINS are jumping into all types of CONCLUSION like a WILD UNTAMED DUMB HORSE. :rock:

You only learn to take away respect not give it in the MILITARY. Why do you bring up my UGLY side? You know I got plenty of it and there is plenty more that will be coming your way. You are the kind of NURSE that likes to jump on people's bad side and enjoy. :laugh: Needless to say, you will definately raise the blood pressure and annoy all your patients. :motz:

I love nursing and I fully understand the needs of the patients. Just imagine, if you had a bowel movement emergency in a public place and I stood guard while you crouch w/ a newspaper by the sidewalk and relief yourself, thanking me later. Basically I acted as your advocate, providing you privacy, dignity, empathizing to your bodily needs, just like a nurse.

Mother Jones, RN
11-25-2008, 01:36 AM
Stop the insanity!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This conversation is getting out of hand. Everyone step back and take a time out before someone says something that they later regret.

MJ

Pal
11-25-2008, 01:39 AM
Thank God there is someone with a sense of maturity. I was beginning to worry. :pepsi:

Julie
11-25-2008, 04:38 AM
I don't need Julie's moral teaching because I am a better HUMAN than her.

Thank you PAL for that.

I intervened after your posts were reported by others. none of us are actually better than others. I am not, never have been and never will be a soldier in the US Army. But that doesn't make me a bad person. I am British, I am a wife and mother and I have been a nurse for 30 years.

As mother jones says lets draw a line, but please no personal insults.

JacquiBee
11-25-2008, 06:15 PM
hello everyone. obviously, i'm new here.

i just wanted to get some feedback as to what the best route would be to become a nurse, thanks in advance for reading this long freakin' post and i appreciate any help you're all willing to give!
Back to the topic at hand. My experience was of years of nurse aide work prior to doing a BN. I didn't have the option of working up to being a BN via a diploma or second level nurse. In my earlier post I suggested that working might be useful but you could do that out of term time as a holiday job for example while going straight for a degree programme. You wont have an issue with finding your feet in University level study, which some of us have had (it took getting a diploma in something else first to get the confidence)as you already know you can do that.Best of luck with your planning.

P/J
11-26-2008, 03:47 AM
.... My experience was of years of nurse aide work prior to doing a BN......I didn't have the option of working up to being a BN via a diploma or second level nurse.

Just from another stance (and because is forum is also international). The equivalent to nurse's aid in Australia is probably PSA/PCA where you have patient contact especially in nursing homes, however if you go into hospitals it is more of a ward support role, where you are cleaning (beds, bathrooms), and running samples and general dogs-body. It will allow you to see the hospital, but it won't give you many patient experiences.

The next step up is a Div 2 Nurse (Div2 RN/ EN/ LPN/ etc). This takes about a year of full time study. And as previously stated in other posts on this topic, your scope of practice is limited to care of stable patients in hospitals and nursing homes, with additional qualifications you can administer medication (in accordance with hospital procedure). Some hospitals have a lot of EN/Div2 nurses, others use them to fill gaps in staffing RNs. Have come across a lot of nurses who are at this stage and are unable to move onto becoming an RN as the RN programs are just too hard after being in a role for years. And to convert to an RN it is two years of study.

Back on the points by JacquiBee, I did have the option to become a Div2/diploma level first, but I thought that if it was going to take a year for that then another 2 for the RN level I was better off going for RN and doing it in 2 years with an accelerated course. Our nursing regulations also allow us to register as a Div2/EN after the equivalent of two years of nursing studies, so I was a Div2 by one year and an RN by two.

Pal (I think it was him, if not sorry!) raised that he was advised by his school not to try and work while studying. We also received the same advice and many of us followed it. However as time went by (and money got tight) I started working on weekends, and of course during holidays, as a nurse. This working as well as extensive clinical practice has given me grater insight into nursing which I couldn't have got with clinicals alone. However I was at nursing school to get my degree and I made sure that this came first (so homework before work).

blankenstein
11-26-2008, 02:48 PM
well, here's my dilemma:

as i said in my first post on here, i already have a bachelor's degree, so obviously i'm aware of how to juggle work/school (i'm sure nursing is going to take a hell of a lot more study time than any of my communications classes ever did). my only problem is that i'm not 100% sure that becoming an RN is EXACTLY what i want to do, which is why i was considering taking the CNA route. being a CNA wouldn't give me the same experience as an RN, i know, but it would at least give me an idea of what i would be jumping into should i decide to go for my RN, right? or would being a CNA not expose me to what being a nurse is really like?

also, i know that there are a number of different types of nurses, but i'm having a hard time finding some good research on them. how would you guys suggest i A)get a good idea of what being a nurse is really like, and B)find good, reliable information about different nurse specializations?

P/J
11-26-2008, 04:25 PM
Have you investigated if your local hospitals allow work experience? You might only get a few days, but if you contact a few hospitals you might get a better idea of the role of the nurse. I think that this might give you a better idea than becoming a CNA. The fact that you are already thinking about becoming an RN means that you already have an idea of the role.

Remember that you can work as a CNA as you study (in many states), so if you do the CNA qualification first it doesn't lessen the length of your course, but you can always leave after the first year and work as a CNA.

mhcns
11-27-2008, 01:01 PM
If you really think that nursing is for you, then just start in school. Know it will be vastly different and harder than anything you had to cope with in communications. But you will learn at an exponential pace and if you are motivated, smart, and work hard, you will have the opportunity to help people in ways that you don't even know about at this point. Just do it. Know that it is very very hard. Make your decision and step up. From the nurse educators in the world, we hate to see people be unsuccessful in school but we have a duty to the profession, society and you to ensure that our students are capable of practicing at a minimally safe level. Do not confuse that with being nasty or excited about cutting people from programs. It is what it is. People think nursing is easy and it is not. We are usually the ones calling the docs and telling them what is going on. More often than not we are telling them what we want them to order. You have to be smart, prepared and motivated to continuously learn or people will start to die around you. Think really hard about going to nursing school and if you should choose to, start with the BSN don't do the LVN or ADN thing. Just step up and do it.

Gary Graham RN MSN

mhcns
11-27-2008, 01:09 PM
The wonderful thing about nursing is there are so many areas you can practice in. So many different roles you can play in the health care industry. Getting a BSN will never be a hindrance to you. You may never work in a hospital but still practice nursing in home care, or as a school nurse, or get a job combining the communications and nursing. Remember only about 60% of nurses work in the traditional hospital setting. Moreover, in the traditional setting there are multiple roles, specialties, etc. If you think you want to, then go to school, work hard and the worst case scenario, you will only work part time, making 40 or 50$ and hour on the weekends. Not a bad way to earn Christmas money. I believe that as you go through school you will see so many options you will be very glad you did go to school.

Gary Graham RN MSN

mhcns
11-27-2008, 01:24 PM
As an educator I find that one of the most common impediments to learning is that people think they already know something. This is most common in the untrained assistant that thinks they know a procedure or concept therefore they do not feel the need to learn. That can be a huge hindrance to education. I just had a CNA fail the catheter check off because she thought she already knew it and she did. Unfortunately, with several bad habits which caused her to fail the checkoff. On further exploration she intimated that she didn't practice or go over the procedure as she already knew it. I have been reading back in the posts and read the stuff from Pal... Wow, I wonder if PTSD is an issue, I don't know as one old soldier to another let me just say , seek help.
Gary Graham RN MSN

blankenstein
11-27-2008, 01:53 PM
thanks for the advice, mchcns. seems that the opinion on whether or not to become a CNA first or just jump into an RN program is split down the middle. considering i already have a bachelor's, though, i suppose it would be better to just get into an RN program right off the bat.

i understand that here in the U.S. there are master's entry programs in nursing. being an educator, would you suggest i do that since i've already got my bachelor's, or should i just for a BSN?

and to everyone - i appreciate your willingness to offer your advice. i've visited a couple of other nursing forums, but you guys are the only ones that seem sincere in helping people out. on some of the other boards someone will post a question asking for advice, and though the post might get upwards of 50 views, might only have 2 or 3 replies if they're lucky. you guys all seem very warm and eager to help out, which is awesome. so thanks again! as i'm sure you know, i've got a lot of questions that roll around in my head when i think about getting into this profession.

oh, and i hope everyone's having a great thanksgiving. =D

Nurse Stella
11-28-2008, 08:30 PM
Best wishes in what ever course you choose to take. As for the Master's programs in nursing, it is my understanding that you have to have an "RN" before you start them. They don't cover basic Nursing 101 and such. Where you already have a bachelor's degree, the BSN route sounds like the best way. Most of the first few semesters will have been covered with your communications degree.

Bev

blankenstein
11-29-2008, 04:09 AM
certain universities have master's RN programs for those that have a bachelor's in an area unrelated to nursing. but, if the difference in responsibilities between a BSN and an MSN aren't too terribly different, i'd probably be more likely to just get another bachelor's.

mhcns
12-06-2008, 06:39 PM
Blankenstein, it really depends on what you want to do. The post bachelors entry level masters degree is not really worth much more than the ADN in the nursing community. In fact, most nurses with their MSN, that we worked hard for 6 years to get, tend to minimize those MSN entry level nurses. From my experience they are not that well prepared. I suggest going to a BSN program if you are planning on staying in this profession or advancing to the practitioner level. I have met some that couldn't get accepted into NP programs as they went to the MSN completion and really didn't have all the coursework for another university to accept them into an advanced program. On the other hand if you are looking just for a job, do that which will get you into the workforce the fastest. Remember, graduate credit is always more expensive than undergrad credit.