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Old 04-29-2009, 08:17 PM
 
Location: Asheville, NC
12,626 posts, read 31,904,192 times
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Honestly, how hard is it? Do you recommend to start with another program to see if it's for you. My daughter would like to become an RN and I think that is awesome. She struggled through high school, but did get her diploma which I very proud of. She has her heart set on becoming a nurse. I've explained to her that it is a very difficult program and maybe she should start out with something that is medical that she can transfer to her RN. I was thinking Medical Assistant or the only other option would be LPN. She keeps telling me if she puts her mind to it and focuses on college, she'll be fine. I just don't want her to set herself up for failure. She is the type of person that needs to take small steps at a time. What do you think? Her GPA was a 2.8 in high school.
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Old 04-29-2009, 08:35 PM
 
3,422 posts, read 10,869,387 times
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Is she looking to do an ADN program at a community college or a BSN program at a 4 yr college?

From what I have seen, many of the ADN community colleges will accept you and put you on a waitlist as long as you make the cutoff GPA in the prerequisites. Meaning, if the cutoff is 2.75, anyone who has an average at least that gets on the list. Waitlist times can vary. From what I have seen of BSN programs is that at least some of them do competitive admission, meaning if they have 20 slots, the top 20 students get in, which could mean the 20th student could possibly have a really high GPA. Everyone else gets to come back next time and apply.

If her GPA is iffy, the community college route to RN might be a better choice.

Regardless, my advice would be for her to get her CNA and work as one a little bit to get a feel for the work environment. It will also help her when she starts clinicals because the hands-on work will be more comfortable for her and she can focus lots of energy on the written/brain work.

One thing to keep in mind with an MA or LPN program is sometimes the science classes are not the same as for the RN program and she might need to retake things like Anatomy and Physiology at a more in-depth level if she takes the lower level one. She could get around this by taking the RN level prerequisites that fit into those programs. There is no MA to nursing bridge that I know of, but I think she could challenge part of an RN program if she held her LPN.
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Old 04-29-2009, 09:27 PM
 
Location: Asheville, NC
12,626 posts, read 31,904,192 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisdol View Post
Is she looking to do an ADN program at a community college or a BSN program at a 4 yr college?

From what I have seen, many of the ADN community colleges will accept you and put you on a waitlist as long as you make the cutoff GPA in the prerequisites. Meaning, if the cutoff is 2.75, anyone who has an average at least that gets on the list. Waitlist times can vary. From what I have seen of BSN programs is that at least some of them do competitive admission, meaning if they have 20 slots, the top 20 students get in, which could mean the 20th student could possibly have a really high GPA. Everyone else gets to come back next time and apply.

If her GPA is iffy, the community college route to RN might be a better choice.

Regardless, my advice would be for her to get her CNA and work as one a little bit to get a feel for the work environment. It will also help her when she starts clinicals because the hands-on work will be more comfortable for her and she can focus lots of energy on the written/brain work.

One thing to keep in mind with an MA or LPN program is sometimes the science classes are not the same as for the RN program and she might need to retake things like Anatomy and Physiology at a more in-depth level if she takes the lower level one. She could get around this by taking the RN level prerequisites that fit into those programs. There is no MA to nursing bridge that I know of, but I think she could challenge part of an RN program if she held her LPN.
CNA is a good idea. She did start EMT, but still needs some credits towards it. She took those in high school b/c she did dual enrollment. Would it be good to finish that? Then, possibly she could get a job as a tech in the hopspital? Thanks for the input! She would do the ADN.
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Old 04-30-2009, 09:35 AM
 
3,422 posts, read 10,869,387 times
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I know around here you can be an ER tech with a program that includes the EMT-I (intermediate). As far as I know the (on the floor) patient care tech jobs are very similar to nurse aides and I think the hospital systems vary by what they call whom and what exactly a PCT is versus a CNA (some its just a name difference, some a PCT is a CNA with experience and some OTJ training).

Anything like that I think would be a good way for her to get her feet wet. I took EMT-B in college and the instructor told us he made us drill so much on the skill sets because he wanted it to become rote so that even if people were screaming around us or at us and whatever the scene, the skills would just be there. Nursing school can be really stressful, with the instructors watching, the pressure of the more experienced staff around, and having basic skills down pat can take some pressure off. I did a term plus one week of LPN school after I graduated from college with a BS and could not find a job. The first week of clinicals in the hospital, I was so nervous I was shaking and could hardly speak to any patients. (I ended up dropping the program for a few reasons, but I often wonder if I had more confidence, or some experience as a CNA, that I would have stuck it through).

One skill I learned you really need to master as a nurse is being organized and able to juggle/manage a bazillion plates in the air. I like doing one thing at a time and then moving on, and mulitasking is not my strong suit. I read somewhere once a nurse said her job was kind of a combination of being a mom and a waitress (of course with more technical expertise) and I feel that kind of describes the requirement to be able to manage many different things at the same time. I am sure there are many organizational aids out there for students to help them learn what system works for them.

So, back to your original question, she should check to see if she can be an ER tech with the EMT program she started in school - if so, finishing it might be one way to go. She could also see what opportunities finishing the program will open up to her. CNA programs are usually only a couple of mos so that is a fast way to getting a job as well.

Good luck!
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Old 04-30-2009, 09:53 AM
 
8,652 posts, read 17,182,476 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisdol View Post
Is she looking to do an ADN program at a community college or a BSN program at a 4 yr college?

From what I have seen, many of the ADN community colleges will accept you and put you on a waitlist as long as you make the cutoff GPA in the prerequisites. Meaning, if the cutoff is 2.75, anyone who has an average at least that gets on the list. Waitlist times can vary. From what I have seen of BSN programs is that at least some of them do competitive admission, meaning if they have 20 slots, the top 20 students get in, which could mean the 20th student could possibly have a really high GPA. Everyone else gets to come back next time and apply.

If her GPA is iffy, the community college route to RN might be a better choice.

Regardless, my advice would be for her to get her CNA and work as one a little bit to get a feel for the work environment. It will also help her when she starts clinicals because the hands-on work will be more comfortable for her and she can focus lots of energy on the written/brain work.

One thing to keep in mind with an MA or LPN program is sometimes the science classes are not the same as for the RN program and she might need to retake things like Anatomy and Physiology at a more in-depth level if she takes the lower level one. She could get around this by taking the RN level prerequisites that fit into those programs. There is no MA to nursing bridge that I know of, but I think she could challenge part of an RN program if she held her LPN.
"If her GPA is iffy, the community college route to RN might be a better choice."

The community college my daughter went to for her RN degree you had to have a 3.8 just to get in.
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Old 04-30-2009, 09:56 AM
 
8,652 posts, read 17,182,476 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beckycat View Post
Honestly, how hard is it? Do you recommend to start with another program to see if it's for you. My daughter would like to become an RN and I think that is awesome. She struggled through high school, but did get her diploma which I very proud of. She has her heart set on becoming a nurse. I've explained to her that it is a very difficult program and maybe she should start out with something that is medical that she can transfer to her RN. I was thinking Medical Assistant or the only other option would be LPN. She keeps telling me if she puts her mind to it and focuses on college, she'll be fine. I just don't want her to set herself up for failure. She is the type of person that needs to take small steps at a time. What do you think? Her GPA was a 2.8 in high school.
I watched my daughter go thru school the get her RN degree and it's a tough road to haul..

I'd suggest your daughter take something else first to see if she can cut it.

"She is the type of person that needs to take small steps at a time." She wont be able to do that.
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Old 04-30-2009, 10:18 AM
 
3,422 posts, read 10,869,387 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Houston3 View Post
"If her GPA is iffy, the community college route to RN might be a better choice."

The community college my daughter went to for her RN degree you had to have a 3.8 just to get in.
Well, there you go - an example that the programs are different everywhere.

OP, your daughter should investigate the various programs in the area to see what the requirements are.

You know, I have seen at least one program for RN with an exit point for LPN - cannot remember where. If a school near you offers that that might be worth considering.
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Columbus, Indiana
993 posts, read 2,280,316 times
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I'm an RN, I strongly suggest your daughter become a CNA or PCT first. A CNA is licensed by the state, a PCT is not. Some places offer free classes for CNAs. I think a CNA would be best, there are some nursing programs that require students to be a CNA before entering the nursing program. Becoming a CNA would help her to be around nurses and to see what the job is like. BUT, there is NOT a nursing shortage, despite the big hype. There is a shortage of nurses who are will to work in hospitals and be floor nurses because of poor treatment by management. There are many nurses who have been inactive who are coming back to work due to the poor economy. New grads are having difficulty finding jobs. A great website for nurses, nursing students and those contemplating nursing school is allnurses.com.
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Old 04-30-2009, 12:06 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
90,316 posts, read 120,179,658 times
Reputation: 35920
I am an RN, too, and I agree about the "nursing shortage" issue. That should tell you something right there about hospital nursing work. It can be brutal.

I've "heard" of some RN programs that let you take LPN boards after a certain amount of time. You need to talk to your local community college about what programs they offer. The need for LPNs seems to be diminishing, with hospitals hiring mainly RNs and CNAs.

Another area to investigate is Medical Assisting programs. These train people to work in doctor's offices, which is somewhat less stressful than a hospital.
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Old 04-30-2009, 01:34 PM
 
3,422 posts, read 10,869,387 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
I am an RN, too, and I agree about the "nursing shortage" issue.
A wife of a coworker of my husband is supposed to graduate this summer, and a couple of weeks ago, her class was told that in our area, there is a glut of RNs.

A PP mentioned allnurses.com. I second that recommendation.
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