Is an accelerated nursing program worth it? If you are called to make a difference in the lives of others and looking for a rewarding career with plenty of opportunity, then it may be the perfect fit for you.
However, not everyone is prepared to handle the rigors of nursing school or can stomach certain aspects of the profession. Read on to see if you have what it takes to succeed in our ABSN program and the complex world of health care.
Nursing School Considerations
When it comes to our ABSN program in New Jersey, there are two ways you can accelerate into the nursing profession. But no matter which path you take, you’ll end up at the same destination — sitting for the NCLEX-RN exam with confidence.
Before applying to our 16-month Hybrid ABSN program or 19-month On-Ground ABSN program, you need to make sure the accelerated path to nursing is a good fit for you. And if it is, we’ll prepare you to enter the workforce as a practice-ready nurse who will benefit from professional perks such as job security, financial reward, and career advancement to name a few.
Are you eligible for our ABSN program?
To be eligible for our ABSN program, you need at least 60 transferable college credits in a non-nursing field of study, along with a cumulative GPA of 3.0. There is also a series of prerequisite courses and tasks you must complete prior to admission.
Point to Ponder: The nursing school admissions process can seem overwhelming at first, but it’s not as time-consuming as you might think. You just need to take advantage of the personalized admissions support that we make available to you.
Can you keep pace in an accelerated nursing program?
As an ABSN student, you’ll have a lot on your plate, spending up to 60 hours a week on your education. You’ll probably go into the program feeling like you bit off more than you can chew, which is totally normal. But once you get into a groove, you’ll start to feel more confident about your decision.
You’ll face a whirlwind of coursework, nursing labs, clinical rotations, and proctored exams, so make sure you have the right support resources in place before starting nursing school. Support comes in many forms. It can be financial, emotional, or physical.
Are you prepared to finance your nursing education?
No matter where you go to nursing school, there’s a good chance you’ll need a federal and/or private loan to finance your education. And don’t be surprised if you need a co-signer for these loans.
To attend our ABSN program, you’ll pay around $58,500 in tuition and fees, which are subject to change without notice. If you need help weighing your financial aid options, our Office of Student Financial Services is happy to assist you.
Does the reward outweigh the cost?
While the cost of nursing school may seem intimidating, don’t let it stand in the way of your future. If nursing is your calling, you owe it to yourself to pursue the profession. In effect, it’s a job that can change your life and the lives of your patients for the better.
Helpful Hint: Think of our ABSN program as a long-term investment, rather than a strain on your wallet. After all, nursing is a highly rewarding profession, from both a personal and financial standpoint. Not to mention, can you really put a price tag on your career happiness?
Nursing Career Considerations
A nursing career is one that should not be entered into lightly. While the desire to want to help others is noble, there are a lot of pressures and hardships that come with the job. It’s up to you to weigh the pros and cons of the profession.
Does the nursing profession play to your strengths?
The best nurses have certain traits and skills that make them good at what they do. These nurses:
- Think critically and remain focused in life-or-death situations.
- Function as part of an interdisciplinary health care team.
- Communicate effectively with patients and their families.
- Show empathy toward others without passing judgment.
- Remain calm and practice patience even on their worst days.
- Roll with the punches, because no two days on the job are the same.
If you can relate to these types of traits, there’s a good chance you’ll thrive in the nursing profession. On the other hand, if you’re more reserved or can easily cave under pressure, nursing probably isn’t the occupation for you.
Can you handle the physical demands of a nursing career?
People often don’t realize the significant physical demands that come with the nursing profession. Nurses are required to lift patients and move heavy equipment. These caregivers also spend a lot of time on their feet, either standing, walking, or running.
Point to Ponder: Proper stretching before and after a shift helps reduce muscle aches and tension, while wearing the right shoes can help alleviate certain foot, leg, and back problems.
Can you stomach the “yuck factors” of the profession?
Nurses perform duties that make some people’s skin crawl, from drawing blood to cleaning up bodily fluids. Also, nurses have the risk of catching something from a patient. But the good news is that most health care facilities have cleansing procedures in place to help keep employees healthy.
Despite the not-so-pleasant aspects of the job, people still choose to become nurses because the profession offers a level of job satisfaction and reward that can’t be found in any other vocation.
Are you okay with unpredictability?
Hospital nurses typically work 12-hour shifts, but the hours can be much longer. Whether it’s due to an unexpected emergency or a colleague calling off, nurses often work extended shifts.
Nurses have the opportunity to work a lot of overtime, which comes in handy when they need some extra cash, e.g., holiday shopping. Nurses with high seniority also tend to have more say in terms of the shifts they wish to work.
Are you prepared to face human suffering and the death of a patient?
Nurses see a lot of human suffering while on the job, whether it’s treating an accident victim in extreme pain or caring for a young mother battling cancer. Some nurses, depending on where they work, have seen more patient deaths than they can count.
Point to Ponder: With the right counseling and support, nurses are better able to cope with heartbreaking on-the-job moments.
Now, getting back to the million-dollar question: Is an accelerated nursing program worth it? If you’ve read this post and still feel confident about making the transition into nursing, then you stand to have a fulfilling and secure future in the profession.
Once you become a registered nurse, you’ll have the satisfaction of:
- Working in one of the fastest-growing occupations available today.
- Making a difference in the lives of others.
- Pursuing any number of nursing specialties.
- Being in the most-trusted occupation in the United States.
- Working in diverse patient-care settings.
- Earning a great salary (the annual mean wage for RNs in New Jersey is $82,750).
If you’re ready to accelerate into the nursing profession, the first step is to contact our admissions team. Once you and your admissions counselor have an enrollment plan in place, the rest of the application process should be smooth sailing.