Many people who want to go to nursing school have simply given up on the idea because they can not afford to quit work and dedicate a minimum of two years of their life, full-time, to their education. Two years is a LONG time to give up a salary.
And that's just for people who want to get an Associate's Degree! The traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing is a four year degree.
That's fine for recent high school graduates who parents will foot the entire bill, or people who have a spouse who is working and can support them for the entire length of their schooling, or for people who do not mind graduating from school with massive debt .
For everyone else who does not fit into that category, here is the best way to go:
Start out by attending a part-time evening LPN degree program. This will generally be an 18 month program. Full-time LPN programs generally take 12 months, but they are much more intense, and it will be very hard to work even part-time during such a program.
Once you have a degree as a Licensed Practical Nurse, you can then take any pre-requisite courses that you will need before you can be accepted into an LPN to RN bridge program. There are usually about eight classes required. They include college level algebra, Anatomy & Physiology I and II, psychology, nutrition, and human growth and development. You may already have taken some of these classes. Either way, you can take them a couple at a time online or at a local community college while you work full-time.
And then, you can apply to an online LPN to RN bridge program, and continue working while you get your Associate's Degree in Nursing. This will take about a year to a year and a half – but the good news is you will be working the whole time you're in school. AND – it is very likely that your employer will help pay for some or all of your continuing healthcare education, especially if your employer is a hospital or other large healthcare facility.
So there you have it – the traditional nursing school model is not the only option for aspiring nurses any more. There are lots of paths to a nursing degree, and we just showed you one which will allow you to hold down a full time job without flunking out of nursing school!