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How many years do you have to stay in college to train for being a nurse or a doctor?

I'm Ms. Hill at the International Community School. My 4th graders have a few questions and I'd like to share your advice with them. Thanks in advance!

#medicine #college


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Yasemin’s Answer

Hi Ms.Hill! So to be a physician you have to go 4 years of college and obtain a bachelor's; you can be any major but must take the prerequisites such as biology, chemistry, physics, English, to name a few. You must take the MCAT exam which is an entrance exam to medical school and then you will be going to medical school for 4 years (2 years is book work while the last 2 years you rotate with physicians and get insight into different specialities like pediatrics and surgery to name a couple). Then you have residency, this is where you are a doctor in training and getting paid but must still have an attending (one who has completed residency) physician with you. Residency changes the shortest is 3 years while the longest can be 7 years due to specializing in a field more.

I hope this helps!
Best of luck to your ambitious 4th graders!

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Tonya’s Answer

The number of years to become a nurse depends on the type of nurse you would like to be. If you would like to become a Licensed Practice Nurse, also referred to as a L.P.N., then you can complete the education in 1 – 2 years. If you would like to become a Registered Nurse, also referred to as a R.N., then you can complete the education in 2 – 4 years. The R.N. with a Bachelor's of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) has more job opportunities.
A L.P.N. can return to school to become an R.N. and a R.N. can continue to go to school to be a specialist and earn a Master’s degree and even Doctoral degree. You do not have to be an L.P.N. first before becoming a R.N. Remember, nurses are considered the most honest and ethical profession in the United States (1). Nurses take care of those who are healthy and sick. Nurses teach and work in many different places than just hospitals. The amount of time to become a nurse is worth it because you have the opportunity to care for others.

1. https://news.gallup.com/poll/274673/nurses-continue-rate-highest-honesty-ethics.aspx

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John’s Answer

Becoming a doctor takes many years of schooling and training.... on average 4 years of college, 2-3 years in Medical School, and 1-2 years in Hospital Residency. It's a difficult path but very rewarding and inspiring in knowing you are helping others and making a difference in their health and their lives.

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Raquel’s Answer

To become a doctor you have to go through a lot of schooling! You have to get a bachelors degree which takes 4 years, complete 4 years of medical school, and then do a residency that takes anywhere between 4 and 8 years depending on what kind of doctor you want to be. Although it takes a long time and requires a lot of hard work becoming a doctor is very worth it. It is a much faster process to become a nurse, but it still takes a lot of hard work. To become a nurse you can either go to a community college or a university to become a nurse. It takes longer to go to a university, but many hospitals are requiring a BSN degree that you receive from a university instead of the community college degree. After that you are a nurse! You can continue on to graduate school to further your schooling and career but that is completely up to you.

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