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How do i become a nurse?

I am finishing high school and would like to enter the health care industry. #nurse

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Nija’s Answer

Hi Casey,

Wonderful question! You are asking this important question at the right moment. It really sounds like you have a strong desire in becoming a nurse.

Although, I am not a nurse but I am here to inform you on the educational and professional requirements in order for you to fulfill your desire to be a nurse. You will need to attend college to pursue an Associate's degree or a Bachelor's degree in Nursing from an accredited nursing program. Then you must take the state licensing exam in order to be a licensed nurse. If you obtain the Associate's degree and pass the licensing exam then you will become a License Practical Nurse. With a Bachelor's degree and licensed, you will be a Registered Nurse. Just remember, the higher the education, the more money you can make as a nurse. You can work at a healthcare facility under an RN to gain supervised clinical experience at a healthcare facility when it is time to do your internship. Also, you will need to put your time and energy into the nursing program. It is very important that you work hard to obtain very good grades because the nursing program is very competitive. Allow yourself to obtain support from an academic advisor when you start college. You can do anything that you put your mind into. Congrats to you and good luck with your educational and career endeavors. You will do great.

Nija recommends the following next steps:

Volunteer at a healtcare facility.
Interview nurses who are currently practicing in the field.
Shadow under a nurse
Work hard in college and get good grades.
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Melissa’s Answer

A very good and complex question!
There is more than one answer as it depends on the type of program you are interested in.

Here is one path to be an RN (registered nurse):

The minimum education is an associates degree in nursing (ADN), offered in some community colleges.

Each program will have different prerequisite courses (courses you must take prior to being accepted into the program in this case). Making an A will increase your chances of being accepted into the nursing program.

The ADN RN programs are varying lengths depending on the school. Usually 4 semesters.

After completing the associates degree in nursing you are eligible to take the state board. When you pass, you will be a registered nurse and can work anywhere as an RN.

You can go back to school to get a bachelors (how long it takes depends on the college and how many college credits you can transfer- the information will be on the website), masters (lengths of programs vary), and doctorate (varying lengths) if you wish.

This is the cheapest way to do it.

I received my ADN at a community college and started working as an RN in a hospital.

Most hospitals have tuition reimbursement. I was able to work and complete my BSN online, and the cost was totally reimbursed... free.

Then I received my MSN FNP in which I also received tuition reimbursement. Those classes are more expensive so I had some expenses.

Some people graduate from high school and go to a 4 year university and get a BSN and RN (after passing the state board) when they graduate. This is a lot more expensive. Plus, you aren’t making money until the end ... and then you typically have a LOT of student debt to pay off.

A lot of high school students dwell on the amount of time it takes to get a degree, but in the end it matters very little.

The time will come and go. Ask yourself if you want a degree when you get to the end of that time period, or will you get there and regret never starting.

Anyway- good luck to all of you who are thinking about this wonderful and challenging career. It’s worth it, and if you have a passion for this type of work, your future patients need you to get started!

You are worth the time and energy to achieve your own goals ;)