How to Become a Registered Nurse

Updated: Jan 16, 2018

The journey to becoming a nurse is a rigorous one but I like to think that it prepares you for the world— NO SERIOUSLY!! I remember feeling like I COULD DO ANYTHING IN THE WORLD after completing my BSN. I literally had gone through hell and high water and managed to come out on top (only by the grace of God might I add).To all those who are interested in becoming a nurse, know that you can do it but you will work for it. For the new grads- it aint over (kirk franklin’s voice- “Stomp” LOL) your first year out of school will still feel like school because you’re learning so much so fast. Last but not least,  for those interested in advanced practice- the road does get easier!Research is a vital tool to becoming a nurse. If interested, you should first learn more about the required curriculum and investment of time needed to reach your goals.

Associate Diploma in Nursing (ADN) is generally obtained from a community college (some technical schools have programs). The prerequisites for entry into the program are about half of what is required at a 4 year school and thus overall takes less time to complete. However, the science courses required for entry are the same for both degrees.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is obtained from a university. This program can be completed straight through or after obtaining an ADN you can bridge your degree and complete the necessary courses to equate a BSN. Bridge programs can also be completed online.People often ask which program track is “best” but honestly it’s about which track is best for you and your lifestyle. Both programs result in the ability to sit for the NCLEX. However, there are some distinctions between the two.

For example, you cannot work in a nursing management or leadership role with an ADN. Also the National Advisory Council on Nursing Education is pushing for the BSN to be the standard for entry level nursing so many hospitals (especially those that are magnet designated) prefer to hire BSN educated nurses over ADN. In addition, magnet designated hospitals are now requiring previously hired ADN nurses to merge to BSN. For these reasons, many feel it is best to just complete the BSN up front knowing that the trending standard calls for the higher degree. However, a segmented approach is nonetheless efficient and has its benefits as well. For example, if you obtain an ADN, you can work and make money while bridging your degree to BSN. So again, it really comes down to what’s best for YOU!Hit the links below for a closer look into the field of nursing and some pros and cons of ADN vs. BSN!!