Next Steps For Single Moms Going To Nursing School
Single moms in nursing school will probably have a harder time of things, but that shouldnt deter you if this is something you really want to do.
Nursing is a good career for single moms because of its flexibility and the potential to earn a good salary. So, if you have an opportunity to attend nursing school and you are up for the challenge, I say go for it.
Hopefully, these single mom nursing school tips in this post will help you get through nursing school successfully, so you can create a better financial life for you and your kids.
Are you a single mom going back to school for nursing? What do you think is the hardest part of becoming a nurse as a single mother?
Guide To Working While In Nursing School
Nursing school provides an avenue for aspiring nurses to grow and learn. Working while also attending school affords students options relating to their personal lives and financial needs. If you have a passion for science and medicine and you enjoy helping people, you may consider becoming a nurse. In this article, we describe the benefits and potential challenges of working while in nursing school and offer five tips for being a successful student while also employed.
Can I Work A Full
I am not going to sugar coat it and say oh yes you can and you shouldnt have any problemspeople do it all the time because that is not the truth. Most nursing programs, at the beginning of the program, will tell you that you should either quit your current job or majorly cut down your hours in order to succeed in their program.
The reason why is because nursing school requires you to attend lecture classes , work at clinical sites, complete individual and group projects, and prepare for proficiency exams. All of this alone equals up to 40+ hours in a week and working at a job full-time while trying to pass your nursing classes is very, very difficult. Many people who start out working full-time in the nursing program either cut down their hours at work or flunk out of the program.
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How To Survive Night Shifts
Working night shifts can make the world feel upside down at first. Here are three quick tips to help you stay feeling strong and rested.
Potential Access To Industry Professionals
Having a part-time job in the healthcare industry is likely to help you make connections with nurses, doctors and physicians assistants. These colleagues can become important contacts within your professional network. Expanding this network can lead to career opportunities, mentorship roles and references.
These relationships can also help you determine what specialties interest you most. By allowing you to ask questions about other people’s career trajectories and histories, nursing students can solicit advice on how to recognize their primary interests and potential areas of specialization. This is a crucial step for realizing your career aspirations and goals.
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Can I Multitask And Get Organized
Time is perhaps the biggest hurdle in this situation.
As a nursing student, youre required to attend classes, work on assignments, and complete clinical hours to graduate, all of which are hard enough.
When you throw in having a job, you might even find at some point that all you do is rush from one thing to another.
This stressful work-school routine can take a toll on you if you dont know how to stick to a proper schedule .
So it goes without saying if youre not good at multitasking or organization, you might struggle a little bit working during school.
If you need help with organization in nursing school, here are some quick pointers.
- Maintain a daily planner to remember the tasks assigned for the coming week
- Plan your study sessions around your work schedule
- Dont slack off studying if the due date is weeks away
- Color code your study material according to subjects so its easier to find them
- Always carry around a book so you can catch up on your study during spare time
- Leverage technology like your phone to help you with studying when you get a chance
Essential Equipment: The Gear You Need To Succeed
The right equipment can make or break your time in nursing school, so its worth it to buy the proper items. Necessary purchases include:
Comfortable Shoes for Clinicals
Nurses spend hours upon hours on their feet, making it imperative that they have supportive and comfortable shoes. Check out Preventions guide on the best shoes for nurses according to podiatrists.
A Backpack Thats Got Your Back
When carrying up to 40 pounds of textbooks, notebooks, snacks, a laptop, and other miscellaneous items, finding a large enough yet still comfortable backpack is critical. Look for one that distributes weight and sits comfortably to prevent back and/or neck aches. The Nerdy Nurse provides a roundup of five top backpacks for nursing students.
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Think In Terms Of Action Not Facts
Its important for nurses to understand why certain conditions occur and what is happening physiologically in a patient. However, the patient is not interested in hearing those facts he or she just wants to feel better. When you are studying for the nursing exam, ask yourself, How will I help my patients with this information? Youll be a better nurse as well as a better student.
Consider Jobs Outside Of Healthcare Facilities
Often these jobs offer flexibility and even some time to study while on the clock:
- Uber, Lyft, or other shared ride servicesâ
Think of your study habits and needs when considering where to work.
While some students are fortunate enough to be a full-time student and not worry about clocking in, itâs unavoidable for others. Consider your financial situation and your work environment when weighing your options.
For more nursing resources, tips and tricks, and guidance to finding a job that works for you, create a free Trusted profile.
Portia Wofford is an award-winning nurse, writer, and digital marketer. After dedicating her nursing career to creating content and solutions for employers that affected patient outcomes, these days, Portia empowers health businesses and nursing brands to grow their communities through engaging content that connects and converts. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter for her latest . As part of her mission to help nurses earn extra income, beyond the bedside, Portia teaches nurses how to get paid and published by showing them how to land their first paid freelance writing gig.
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Create A Plan For Success
Being organized and proactive will help you map out a productive path toward graduation. At the start of each week, carve out how youre going to manage your time, then hold yourself accountable. Check-in and reprioritize if needed, or consider working with a study buddy to help stay on track. Your Student Success Coach is also available to help you find work-school-home life balance.
Having a plan will ensure the successful and timely completion of your degree.
Male Nursing Students: How To Overcome The Stigma
Its no surprise that women represent the vast majority of nurses. While stigmas continue to fade in this industry, some male nurses may still feel out of place. When this happens, remember that you want to be a nurse to help others. Seek out other male students and look at joining a membership group such as The American Association for Men in Nursing.
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Utilize Your Universitys Resources
Your school will have resources in place to help guide you through your education. For example, Carson-Newman offers online nursing students access to a dedicated Student Success Coach who provides support from the first day of classes until graduation.
As a student, youll become a part of a community, so reach out when you need help.
Can I Afford To Pay For Nursing School Without A Job
Hefty tuition and fees and the cost of general living are among the main reasons students seek out a job in nursing school.
Many students either dont want the student loan burden or arent able to get student loans or enough financial aid to cover their expenses in school.
Ask yourself what situation youre in?
If you can afford to go to school without working and taking out a little bit of student loan, is that a good option for you if it means you dont have to work and can focus on school.
The average cost of nursing school can be well over $40K and trying to make up all of that while working can lead you to work a lot of hours with very little time for studying.
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What Is The Best Online School For Nursing
The best online school for nursing is the one that provides the necessary classes and certifications and the program that offers the most ideal schedule to allow you to succeed. National Universitys nursing program offers several different options to allow you to complete your degree online. From a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, and RN and LVN programs, we offer flexible class schedules for you to complete your degree around your busy schedule.
Is Online Nursing School Good
Just because a program is online doesnt mean youre sacrificing your education. Online nursing programs are viable options for aspiring medical professionals, but as is the case with any degree, you get out what you put into it. Its up to you to put in the time and effort, study appropriately, ask for help when you need it, and find a clinical program that allows you to get the required hands-on experience to be able to work in the nursing field.
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Why I Like The Weekend Shifts
Here are some of the reasons why I liked the weekend shifts.
Free Application For Federal Student Aid
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA as its more commonly know is a form you have to fill out if youre trying to get federal assistance for nursing school.
Federal loans or federal scholarships, grants, and work study all require that form.
The government uses the information you put in the form to calculate what your financial need status is.
Even if you dont think youll qualify or you dont want the federal loans you still should fill out the application.
Many outside scholarships, not to mention university scholarships, require it as part of their application process.
I havent had to deal with it in awhile but the last time I did it was a lengthy process with a lot of questions so prepare yourself.
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What Are The Best Student Nurse Jobs While In Nursing School
Here is a short list of jobs that a nursing student can do. These jobs are jobs that can be acquired in a hospital and can help a nursing student become exposed to a hospital setting:
- Certified Nursing Assistant-assists the RN and LPN with patient care
- Patient Safety Companion basically a person who is hired to sit with a patient to prevent them from harming themselves.
- Phlebotomist draws blood and collect certain specimens.
- Hospital transporter-transports patients to testing throughout the hospital
- Hospital Clerical-put doctors orders in the computer, answers phones, and other types of secretary work.
- Telemetry Monitor Tech requires a person to watch cardiac monitors all day and report to the nurse if a patient is having a different heart rhythm.
Important Study Tips To Succeed In Nursing School
When trying to manage both work and home responsibilities on top of your studies, the amount of studies required may seem overwhelming. How will you be able to read all those chapters, review notes and prepare for your nursing exam?
Your first move should be to inhale deeply and tell yourself you can do it. With just a little bit of planning, dedication, time management, and study tips, you will be able to read and prepare for your exam and retain vital information necessary for a successful career in nursing.
Follow the NCLEX study guide
One way to focus on your studies is by basing your studies around the NCLEX test. First review the study guide to determine the subject areas to focus on and how questions are presented. Although the nursing exam doesnt contain everything that you should know as a student nurse, studying towards the nursing exam will boost your confidence on testing day.
Concentrate more on materials covered in class
Your instructor will assign you many chapters to read and additional outside resources that you should review. However, instead of reading each word, take a hint during class time by considering the topics your instructor spends more time reviewing and the key points covered, and put more focus on those areas.
Study a little every day
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The Benefits Of Online Nursing Programs
Working as an RN and helping people with their medical concerns can be a rewarding career path. Nursing, as a profession and all of the associated education, however, can be very demanding. If you have a job and/or a family, this can be an even tougher challenge. Online nursing programs can give you the flexibility and convenience to take classes around your own schedule. You dont need to commute or spend hours attending physical classes on campus.
When you attend in-person classes, youre restricted to the programs offered in your area. With online classes, you can choose a program that fits your needs and dont need to worry about where you live or where the school is located. Online nursing programs are also traditionally more affordable than on-campus options since you pay per credit and generally incur fewer expenses and added fees.
The disadvantage of completing your nursing degree online is you will still need to find a physical location to complete your required clinical hours. This may be a drawback in that you will need to do your research to find an applicable program, but with the flexible class schedule, you may be able to complete some of your clinical hours while youre working toward your degree.
Second Career Nursing Students
According to the National League for Nursing, in 2014 a significant number of nursing students were over the age of 30. For example, 42 percent of students enrolled in associate programs were in this age group. These nontraditional students also made up 18 percent of BSN and 64 percent of RN-BS nursing school enrollments.
Being an older nursing student comes with its own unique issues. While younger students may enter their programs without family responsibilities, their older counterparts are more likely to juggle marriage and childcare with their studies. In addition, older students pursue the nursing profession as a second career, so many of them must maintain their full-time jobs to support themselves and their families. These added responsibilities can make nursing school more stressful for older students.
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A Low Stress Environment
If you can choose between a high-stress position and a lower one , take the job that wont make you pull your hair out. Some people thrive in deadline-driven, high-stress environments and like the idea of juggling school and a stressful job. Even these people have their limits, however, and almost no one anticipates how demanding and stressful nursing school can be.
Adding any responsibilities to your schoolwork is a tremendous feat, so find a job that gives you some respite. Working at a calm, slow pace may provide the perfect balance for the many, many challenges of nursing school.
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While its true that any good nursing school will be challenging and, at times, stressful, its also exciting, and it doesnt last forever. Once you graduate and pass the NCLEX, you can leave your nursing school job behind to become a full time RN and pursue your dream career. It isnt an easy road, but its good, and millions of nurses have paved the way before you. If you have any questions about what its like to work during nursing school, feel free to reach out to us.
Set Your Expectations And Goals
However you choose to achieve your LPN, ADN or BSN, it is imperative that you establish goals and then define a plan to achieve them on a schedule that is appropriate for you. Working 40 hours and going to nursing school, even online, is going to be tough, so prepare for that challenge both mentally and physically. Most students who flourish in such an environment do so because they lead a very structured lifestyle. The fortunate aspect of this sacrifice is that you will see dividends within 18 months, which is not so long to go and will make the remainder of the process much more palatable.
Perhaps the best advice for someone who is working full-time and attending nursing school is not to go it alone. Lean on your family and friends for support, and go out of your way to make new friends among your fellow nursing students. The camaraderie offered by these friendships makes nursing school easier, and even fun.
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