With so many jobs on hand for registered nurses, it’s not surprising to find a lot of young individuals and even career changers eager to earn that nursing degree. The problem? The dreaded, infamous nursing school waiting lists. Most nursing schools offering traditional bachelor of science degree in nursing are swarmed with thousands of aspiring student nurses, that they’d have to turn away even qualified applicants year after year.
By qualified, we mean students with good grades, no criminal background, good references.
Students may reapply three or four times before they get in, or they may never get in to their four-year BSN program of choice.
According to the National Association of Colleges of Nursing, U.S. nursing schools turned away 42,286 qualified applicants from bachelor’s degree programs and graduate schools in 2006.
One solution? If you are eager to go to nursing school, you may want to consider a “career college”, also known in some places as vocational schools or technical schools or degree schools. Note: not all vocational or technical schools are private, and the public schools will likely have long waiting lists, because they are cheaper.
Career colleges are private, for-profit schools where an individual can earn degrees in areas like registered nursing, practical nursing, computer technology, fire sciences technology, law enforcement, and other specific career-oriented programs. The liberal arts courses that they offer are the ones that are required to complete those degrees.
Career colleges generally cost considerably more than community colleges and state universities, but they have a huge advantage: you will get in much faster, and get your degree much faster, possibly in as little as two years.
Career colleges are businesses; therefore, they want to help you to succeed, because a high passing rate for their students makes them more attractive to prospective students.
Career colleges would likely recommend that a student get an Associate’s Degree in Nursing rather that take the longer course for a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. An ADN usually only takes about a year of schooling although that’s not including the prerequisite courses that you would need to have taken before starting with the ADN program. Some career colleges, though, offer those classes in a much faster format, to help you complete the course faster. This is done by holding longer sessions for the prerequisite subjects. For instance, a one-hour math class scheduled three times a week, could be increased to two hours daily.
As soon as you complete your Associate’s Degree in Nursing and then pass the NCLEX-RN, you will then be a registered nurse. It will be easy enough to get that BSN degree once you are an RN. You don’t need to be on any of those long waiting lists.
True, a career college entails higher cost, but because you avoid those annoying waiting lists and shorten the time that you start on your career, it’s an investment that pays off handsomely.
It is important to check with your State Board of Nursing to make sure that your nursing school program is accredited. It’s not a bad idea to make sure the program has already graduated AT LEAST one class of nurses, preferably several. But rest assured, career colleges are a legitimate option for frustrated wannabe nursing students who are waiting to start their dream career and don’t want to have to wait any longer.
Without doubt, the nursing shortage has brought on the strong demand in nursing careers. Visit us to learn more about all the traditional and non-traditional programs such as the online nursing program.