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What should I do to take that next step now that were in a pandemic?

I'm currently in 11th grade, and as of right now, I'm a little lost on the next steps I should take that would be beneficial to my career in the future. I want to become a Neonatal Nurse Practitioner or a Nicu nurse. #nurse #health #career #career-paths

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Estelle’s Answer

First, decide if you want to go into a 2 year nursing program or 4 year program. When you finish the 2 year program, you will have your RN degree. If you choose the 4 year program, then you will have your bachelor of science in nursing. The BSN is better if you intend to go into administration or become a nurse practitioner. Don't let the pandemic get you off track!

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Summer’s Answer

You should definitely focus on your undergraduate education next! Once you're a senior, you can start applying to college and you can apply to some pre-nursing programs which can help you get to where you want to be. Right now, there's not much you need to do except for create a college list and if you want you can study for the ACT/SAT. Of course, you need to keep your grades up and stay involved in extracurriculars.

Thank you so much!! I'm currently studying for the sat. Najae M.

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Ed’s Answer

Nursing is a great field to go into. The fact that you still want to go that route in the middle of a pandemic is a sure sign that you are someone they can really use in the health care system.

The pandemic makes it a bit harder to do some things, but there are still many opportunities to get further along in your path. First, continue your education in high school. Ensure you get the grades needed to move forward toward a BS program in a good college if that is something you want to pursue.

Note that some colleges have what is called 'Direct Admit' in to the nursing programs and some don't. The direct admit programs mean that once you are accepted in to the college of nursing as a freshman, you are fully in the program. The other schools have you taking nursing classes, but you have to 'apply' to the nursing school at the end of your freshman year. Sometimes, this can be quite competitive and really good students might not be let in to the school. This would mean you would need to change professions or wait and apply again the next year which could extend your college payments/loans needed as you would then be going for 5 years for a BS degree. If this matters to you, start researching which schools have 'direct admit' and which ones don't.
Also, you might start researching the NCLEX pass rates of the schools you might be interested in. This will help you pick a school that trains their students well to pass the testing required at the end.

Other options would be RN which is more of a 2 year program. I am not as familiar with those programs, but there are many places that provide opportunities to get an RN or associate degree.

I would take advantage of your time now as well. Volunteer for the Red Cross or other programs in your area that let you get involved in the health care industry.
For example, here are some service links. If you look under the 'high school student' area, you can see a volunteer link to help with blood drives.

Here is another list of volunteer ideas:

The other area I have seen some high school students try is to become a certified EMT which will expose you to a lot of the medical area as well - while allowing you to help others which is a huge part of nursing.

Best of luck.

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Vimukthi’s Answer

I am not an expert on the specific profession you are referring to, but I can give you some tips to cope up with the pandemic.
One scenario is, you are all locked-down and not even online lectures are delivered by the school, so you feel idling and wasting your time. But do not!
Because there are plenty of online courses in Coursera, Edex and many websites which you can always enroll in. Select interesting courses and complete them. Make a LinkedIn profile and share the certificate there, or in Facebook. That will encourage you and also motivate you.
Also, if you could find, there are so many Webinars and Online conferences happening all around the world. Join these Webinars and learn new things. Participate in programs like MUNs and etc.
It is actually a big advantage because many of these online events are normally (non-pandemic) held physically, but with the pandemic everyone is organizing these programs online, so that you can very easily participate to them.
Also, start a blog or invest your time in some interesting hobbies as well.
This pandemic is an opportunity to invest some quality time with yourself, so cheerup and take the best of it. Good Luck!

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Tracy’s Answer


Look into nursing programs! Look into the admission requirements for those programs, look into financial aid such as scholarships and grants (from the schools and the state). Some schools have programs where you get automatic admission into the nursing program, so look into that as well! Also, look into the straight-shot programs that allows you to be an NP. Talk to some of the students that have applied to the school, research demographics and environment on your school of interest. Take advantage of this time.

Let me know if this helps!

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Kiirsten’s Answer

Hello Najae,

So awesome to hear from you! That's wonderful that you're thinking ahead, I wasn't a student during a pandemic so I can't even fathom how you feel but the biggest recommendation I can provide is that you stay focused. During this time especially, you can really show others how you can push through anything. As you are in 11th grade, college application processes will be starting, so make sure you continue to do well in school, and do your research on potential colleges you'd like to attend. My typical other suggestion would be to volunteer at your local hospital if possible, to get exposure into the health care world, physical volunteering might be a little more difficult nowadays, but maybe reach out to see if there are any virtual volunteer opportunities with them?

Good Luck!