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  1. #1
    Wiselove is offline Registered User
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    Question Creative Nursing degree help and ideas needed

    Please help me solve this puzzle! I'm probably overanalyzing and/or overlooking; I need help focusing.

    I'm a single mom of one, and am in a health-oriented situation where my son cannot be apart from me for extended periods of time during the day (night time is not so much a problem, but child care or daycare is a very narrow option during the day). I also work from home, so time is crunched.

    Please help me figure out the least away-from-home option to becoming an RN. The RN part seems to be the only requirement, due to clinicals, that forces me to be out of the home and away from my son based on several programs I've viewed. Everything else can be accomplished online, it seems.

    When I was in school, I was a good student, and I've taken different non-credit courses and programs since, so I'd like to think I could condense the time frame spent on the degree (as is the theme on this forum!). I would like to go at my own pace, speeding through some courses, taking my time with others, testing out of as many as possible. BAin4weeks.com inspired me a while back, but I'm not sure I could do something like that with nursing .

    I already have a career lined up that needs RN licensure, and a guaranteed promotion if I have Master's credentials (small company with state requirements). They're just waiting on me to make a move in my education . The work I will be doing is not in a clinical setting, but is remote management and involves a lot of patient file review. The DNP will substantially raise my pay in my future occupation.

    My problem is choosing which path to start my journey! There are so many options. My goal is DNP (Doctorate of Nursing Practice), and I just need some help getting started.

    I have no degree, and only a few courses for a massage certification (RA school) and random courses like english and economics , so starting practically from square one.

    I want a Bachelor degree in either psychology or another science, so I am considering doing an ASN-MSN bridge program at schools like Aspen University (in effect, skipping the nursing bachelor's).

    I could go for the BSN pre-licensure, sit for the NCLEX, then bridge to the DNP, but haven't yet found one that doesn't require tons of time away from home. I'm not sure how the TESC one works if I just zip through a BA and then go to the accelerated BSN program, as I've received conflicting answers from different TESC advisors.

    I've read about doing Ocean Community College's labs online from Jennifer (cookderosa) on this forum but haven't yet contacted them or found the labs on their website, and one time I read about another program where you can do clinicals in your local area and do the rest of classes online, but I can't find it again. I'm also posting this question on allnurses.com forum to reach those who are not a part of this forum.

    Please help me narrow some possibilities on how to start my education path.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    mbaonline is offline Registered User
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    Wiselove, this is a tough one. We've talked about some aspects of that before here. Here's something I wrote recentely:

    "A great program that I've found (maybe not for you but for others interested in a distance RN option) is UWisconsin Osk Kosh Accelerated Online Bachelor's to BSN Accelerated Online Bachelor's to BSN — College of Nursing This program requires the student to have a prior Bachelors (in anything), a CNA license and the normal pre-reqs like A&P, microbio etc. It does require that the student not be employed during the one-year RN/BSN program. Precepts supervise the student in their home community. There are three trips to campus but they are short. This option would be good for a student who lives in the middle of no-where, has a BA/BS, wants an RN degree without having spouse, kids etc move to an urban location in order to be an RN. Or someone who needs to care for family members and needs a flexible schedule, setting up clinical rotations as they wish without being held to a school's schedule. This looks to be a unique program." Thread here: Anatomy & Biochem classes

    BUT. and that's a big BUT...

    You'd have to have a Bachelor's first plus all the pre-reqs. That's not to say it couldn't be done. Many here have gotten all-online Bachelor's degrees and some have done most/all of their nursing pre-reqs (anatomy & physiology, microbiology etc.) online. You have a long road ahead of you, though, before you can enter a nursing program, but that shouldn't discourage you. But I'm confused...if you get to some point, you'll have to complete clinicals and certainly in the DNP program you'll have clinicals. What will you do about your child's care then?

    My advice would be to start with the BAin4 weeks program and knock out as much of a two-year degree with CLEPs etc., which should include the RN distribution requirements of psych, nutrition, statistics, English, college-level math. Work towards the AA/AS at one of the Big 3 or your local CC. Then start working on the RN pre-reqs - anatomy & physiology, microbiology, chem. Then get your CNA/NAC license in your state. Then when that is done, you could start looking at RN programs and see what works for your life vis-a-vis your son's care. Your son's needs may have changed in that time. But any program that you want to attend would require at least the foundations of an AA/AS degree so start there.

    The UWisc - OshKosh program linked above would be great - if you didn't have to work for pay during that time. Maybe you could get a scholarship or Pell grants or something for that year - but it's only one year - which is pretty quick.

    Good luck to you!
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  3. #3
    rebel100 is offline Registered User
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  4. #4
    scottae316 is offline Registered User
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    Getting your RN is going to be difficult if you do it the way you want. I have not seen a program where you can work at your own pace for the actual nursing courses, and clinical's there is no easy way around this. You said that nights are easier, is there a program that is weekend based. My wife worked and went for RN part-time on the weekends. There was very little time for much else for her, but she did well and it has been a very rewarding career for her. Good luck.
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  5. #5
    mbaonline is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by rebel100 View Post
    Is everything but clinicals done by distance learning?

    This program would be good if: 1) Wiselove lives in one of the offered states "WGU is currently recruiting students for programs in Southern California, Texas, Florida, Indiana and Utah." and 2) Has a prior AA or BA.

    Maybe by the time she completes her AA/BA it will be offered in more locations.
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  6. #6
    Wiselove is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbaonline
    Wiselove, this is a tough one. We've talked about some aspects of that before here. Here's something I wrote recentely: UWisconsin Osk Kosh Accelerated Online Bachelor's to BSN Accelerated Online Bachelor's to BSN — College of Nursing... You'd have to have a Bachelor's first plus all the pre-reqs.
    Thank you, mbaonline. I'll look into this one. I remember reading it before.

    Quote Originally Posted by mbaonline
    But I'm confused...if you get to some point, you'll have to complete clinicals and certainly in the DNP program you'll have clinicals. What will you do about your child's care then?
    Hopefully, I'll have some assistance by then. I'm already in the process of setting this up since recently moving. Thank you for your concern.

    Quote Originally Posted by mbaonline
    My advice would be to start with the BAin4 weeks program and knock out as much of a two-year degree with CLEPs etc. Then get your CNA/NAC...Work towards the AA/AS at one of the Big 3 or your local CC. Then start working on the RN pre-reqs... any program that you want to attend would require at least the foundations of an AA/AS degree so start there...Good luck to you!
    Thank you! Looking at it written out, it seems like a very long way to go. One thing that's also been holding me back is taking/testing out of courses that I don't need. I loathe spinning my wheels and having to back track. Is it recommended to just start taking tests/courses before choosing a school? I mean, are all the pre-reqs that common?

    Quote Originally Posted by rebel100
    Take a look at Western Govorners Online Nursing Degree
    Yes, I checked with them and I'm not in one of the states. I'll check again to see what I can do online. I'm willing to move or at least rent an apartment or room just to gain residency. Thank you.

    Quote Originally Posted by scottae316
    You said that nights are easier, is there a program that is weekend based. My wife worked and went for RN part-time on the weekends.
    What school is this that your wife attended?

  7. #7
    scottae316 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wiselove View Post
    Thank you, mbaonline. I'll look into this one. I remember reading it before.



    Hopefully, I'll have some assistance by then. I'm already in the process of setting this up since recently moving. Thank you for your concern.



    Thank you! Looking at it written out, it seems like a very long way to go. One thing that's also been holding me back is taking/testing out of courses that I don't need. I loathe spinning my wheels and having to back track. Is it recommended to just start taking tests/courses before choosing a school? I mean, are all the pre-reqs that common?


    Yes, I checked with them and I'm not in one of the states. I'll check again to see what I can do online. I'm willing to move or at least rent an apartment or room just to gain residency. Thank you.


    What school is this that your wife attended?
    It is here in PA, it was a community college and at the time was actually one of the largest programs in the country. They have four campuses and they all have nursing programs. Perhaps you have a community college that offers a program like that in your area?
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  9. #8
    GoodYellowDogs is offline Registered User
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    Just start! For every month you wait, it's a month when you could have taken a class, a CLEP/DSST, etc. You'll get the motivation and reinforcement you need by putting one foot in front of the other. This is the advice I wish someone had given me 30 years ago :)
    Denise

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  10. #9
    rmm0484 is offline Registered User
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    You might try this web site -they seem to have useful information for Nurses. Also what about becoming a CNA, then LPN? There are a number of bridge programs from LPN to RN. Since I am not a nurse , though, I would ask the nurses for the best advice in your situation.

    Nurses / General Nursing / Nursing Scrubs

    OOPs! while editing this post, I just saw that you already have posted there as well. It appears to be a great resource, though!
    Last edited by rmm0484; 12-12-2012 at 01:18 AM.
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  11. #10
    GoodYellowDogs is offline Registered User
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    Depending on where you are, it can be very difficult to get into a LVN to RN transition program. Excelsior has one that is accepted in some states.

    In some RN programs you get your LVN after the first year, but you are actually in a RN program.
    Denise

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  12. #11
    Wiselove is offline Registered User
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    Just got back in from traveling and stopping in for a quick check. Thanks to all who replied. I suppose I'll have to keep my ear to the ground for any programs that would fit my situation and time frame. It's so good to have everyone chime in. I'll be revisiting this thread if any possibilities pop up.

    This is great advice, by the way, and a song that's been sung in my ears for some time now:
    Quote Originally Posted by GoodYellowDogs View Post
    Just start! For every month you wait, it's a month when you could have taken a class, a CLEP/DSST, etc. You'll get the motivation and reinforcement you need by putting one foot in front of the other. This is the advice I wish someone had given me 30 years ago :)
    I'll get there soon.
    Last edited by Wiselove; 12-22-2012 at 04:29 PM.
    Thank you.

  13. #12
    mbaonline is offline Registered User
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    Here's an article about several CC RN programs that are on-line or on-line hybrid (where the clinical portion is done at a distance).

    It lists these schools:

    Community College of Baltimore County
    Whatcom Community College (In Bellingham north of Seattle)
    Madisonville Community College in Kentucky
    Monroe Community College in Michigan

    Colleges expand online options for nursing students

    It looks like the Whatcom program requires you to be local for clinicals, with the classroom portion online and is currently "on hold".
    Last edited by mbaonline; 01-20-2013 at 12:58 PM.
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  14. #13
    soupbone is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbaonline View Post
    Here's an article about several CC RN programs that are on-line or on-line hybrid (where the clinical portion is done at a distance).

    It lists these schools:

    Community College of Baltimore County
    Whatcom Community College (In Bellingham north of Seattle)
    Madisonville Community College in Kentucky
    Monroe Community College in Michigan

    Colleges expand online options for nursing students

    It looks like the Whatcom program requires you to be local for clinicals, with the classroom portion online and is currently "on hold".
    Thank you for posting this. It gives me some motivation to at least continue my research.

  15. #14
    mbaonline is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by soupbone View Post
    Thank you for posting this. It gives me some motivation to at least continue my research.
    Yesterday it occured to me that there must be more quasi-distance programs. They are just so under the radar or scattered that they are hard to find.
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  17. #15
    Wiselove is offline Registered User
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    Wow. Thank you for these ideas. I've already contacted a few and am awaiting a call back. I'll be following up Monday.

    And yes, there must be other similar programs! I'll keep my eye out, too.
    Thank you.

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