Guest Post By: Carolyn of BrainTrack.com
Maybe you were the kid who asked if they could take home another frog from science class to dissect again in your free time? Or perhaps you could sanitize and bandage all your friends’ scrapes and cuts on the playground lickety split. Now, you’re a grown up and you think nursing might be the right profession for you. The good news is that this is a great time to be a nurse in the job market. The questions you may have now probably start with: now what do I do? Here are the next steps in the process for folks who have decided to enter the noble field of nursing.
There are several ways to start out on your journey depending upon your academic and financial standing right now. If you’re not sure if you’re ready to jump right into a traditional 4-year Registered Nurse (RN) program you can get an Associates Degree in Nursing (ARN) at a Community College, which takes about 2 years, or start out as a Licensed Practical Nurse (or Licensed Vocational Nurse in California and Texas).
What is an LPN? And what should I expect?
LPN programs can run as short as 12 months and make a great place to get your feet wet and possibly work while you go back to school to get a higher degree. To be honest, with the high interest rates of student loans and tough admission standards, starting out by getting your LPN or ARN is a good way to see whether or not you truly want to be a nurse, make a little money while you’re going to school, or even get your job to help subsidize your tuition for further education.
Getting some hands on experience will also look good for your admission to RN school and prepare you for choosing a specific nursing focus in the future; especially if you have ambition to go on to an advanced degree in nursing such as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) or Nurse Practitioner (NP).
The next step in the process will be selecting where you want to apply. Your choices may be narrowed by your grades and experience or focus on a particular direction of study, but in the end you want to match yourself with the best choice for your future. Check out websites, and see if you might qualify for grants or scholarships to certain schools and be realistic about your financial situation when it comes to private schools or going out of state.
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Once you’re in school, you’ll be put on the academic path necessary to accomplish your goals. The best part about nursing is that you can always get more education, certifications and advance up the ladder into higher pay grades if that’s your ambition. Just make sure that you’re doing what you want to do and specializing in what interests you.
Nursing can be a grueling profession if you don’t like the work.
Author’s Bio: Carolyn is a guest post blogger on the subjects of education, LPN programs, and the exciting field of nursing.
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4 thoughts on “Interested In Nursing? Now What?”
I couldn’t agree with you more about nursing being a great career! Additionally, I also believe in Achieve Test Prep. It’s an excellent way for the working LPN, paramedic, or respiratory therapist to reach his/her career goals, in less time and with less cost than a traditional program. Achieve Test Prep uses real RN’s with real experience to guide the students through the information they need to test out of the courses at Excelsior college, and reach their goals of becoming RN’s.
Reach out to http://www.achievetestprep.com/info today to find out just how much of a reality this can become!!
Carolyn, Good post about encouraging people to get their RN. In my 20 years of nursing, I’ve never had a day I had to worry about where to get a job. And I love that it can be full-time, part-time, PRN or contract. Did you know about a way for people to get their RN’s that’s very different than when I was in school for my RN? It’s great, and really gives people now-a-days a realistic avenue to pursue their RN. It’s called Achieve Test Prep, it’s taught by all RN’s, and it’s faster, more flexible and less expensive. You can go to one of their campuses, or do it by their virtual classrooms. Basically you get your RN degree by the credit-through-examination method. So you test out of your courses, and get the credit for the course. It’s not a self-study, which I can’t imagine doing after I myself did it the traditional way. You get the education you need, but in a more streamlined way. So I just wanted to be sure you knew about this method, it opens up the ability to get your RN for a lot of people who have their LPNs, or even for paramedics, respiratory therapists, PA’s. Their website is http://www.achievetestprep.com. Thanks!
RN to BSN programs are coming increasingly popular online. With a BSN you can get higher administrative roles right off the bat. They are also very useful if you wish to explore a becoming a college professor. The great thing about online is that it allows you to continue working, but you can get a degree while doing it. I would stay away from online only bsn programs, however, and look for schools with both tradition bsn programs as well as online degrees. http://online.notredamecollege.edu offers both if you happen to live in Ohio.
Thanks for your encouraging and informative post. I also like the LPN or ARN program rather than typical four years RN program. In this tight economic situation there huge shortage of qualified nurse and there is great change to help others as well.