I am after a little advice about doing a nursing degree. I am currently working full time, I am a hb/Ctb assessor, my job is due to end when universal credit is brought in. Government start date is oct 2013 but probably be about April 2014.
Now my only work experience is in benefits and as this job will no longer exist I am looking at retraining and nursing is something I have been thinking of. I have applied to do an access course to get the grades to apply for uni. This course will last two years as I have to do it part time.
My question is really is the degree worth doing, we are planning on starting a family this year. Need to get the maternity pay from work and will wait for redundancy. Will I find doing a degree course with a baby/child really difficult? My partner only earns around 17k as well. Now I know I can get a bursary and we can apply for universal credit when it comes in. But do any of you doing the degree find it really hard financially to cope and hard to organise studying and looking after your lo?
Hope someone can give me some advice as I don't want to start and then have to drop out
i did an ou degree as a single mum while working part time. financially was fine but i had no child care as mine were in full time school. work load is heavy but completely doable as long as you organise yourself! i'm back at uni to do pgce in Sept and have a 10 mth old so its gonna be a tough year. im lucky cos finance not really an issue but i know workload is very heavy. i would say go for it. if you want it enough you Will do it... good luck...!
I am doing bachelor of nursing part time(20units..it works out that my in uni time is Fridays 8-3 and Monday 3-5) I have 2 kids nearly 4 and 18months and am supported by my partner so I don't work.there is no way I could work and have time for my uni work and the kids.I probably spend at least 2 hours a day doing preparation work for uni,assignments and study.I really enjoy it though and love studying again.I'm in Australia though,so our courses may differ.ours is 1/3 prac,se we spend a whole third of our time in placements learnig hands on how to be a nurse.however being part time I don't need to start that til next year.I chose nursing as I am very interested in biology and bio science and I find the course fascinating.I will also never ever be out of work once quallified.they are in desperate need of trained nurses here
I am doing the degree with 2 kids aged 3 and 5. I won't lie, it is extremely hard work juggling childcare around 12hr shifts when on placement but it is doable, I am managing it and I have no family up here to rely on for help and my OH works shifts and spends time away with the RAF.
Every semester consists of an essay, an exam and a 6/9/12 week placement and we are given the timetable in advance. Obviously there are other bits and pieces of research/groupwork etc but we always have adequate time to get it done (not that you are asked to prove you have done it).
Contact the uni you will be applying to and visit them, find out the structure of the course, some offer it over 4years as a family friendly option. It's hard work but anything worth having always is, Good luck!
Thanks for all advice, I am going to the open day next month so I will get an idea of the workload. I wish I had planned to do it years ago instead of staying in my job. Tbh I have hated my job for the last 8 years lol.
Least now I know it is do able but will be hard work. It will be worth it tho, I hope let's just hope I get the grades on the access course I need
I am in the USA so we may have differences in the courses and such, but I have a 2 year old and 8 year old, I'm in an excellerated course ( last 16 months instead of 24 months), I go to school mon, tue from 8am-1pm, wed, thur clinical day from 630a-330p, and fri 8a-1p. Not to mention all the reading, studying and homework. I work part time, one day a week on Saturday while classes are going on, as a bartender and while on break I typically work 4-5 days. I have a household to share responsibilities in and I'm married. Surely if I can do all this, you can do it!!!! Some people ask me all the time "how do you manage?", I just tell them I'm doing what I need to do. A great quote I heard one day and will never forget is
"you do what you need to do today, so you can do what you want to do tomorrow."
I thought it was a great quote! You can do anything you set your mind to. Good luck!
I only qualified last year so am pretty biased but I love it!! Our cohort were split fairly evenly between school leavers and mature students. Most of the mature students had young children. We had one girl who got pg in her 2nd year and managed really well. Our uni took into account the girls with dependants when allocating placements. It was still difficult but with family around they all got on really well. A lot of placement staff and mentors are fairly lenient with you while you're still training anyway.
What does your OH think about it? You will need him to be very supportive. No matter how family friendly the uni is prepared to be, at least some of your placements will be on wards where you have to work shifts. In my experience, as long as you didn't try it on (asking never to work nights or every weekend off) the wards were pretty flexible with shifts. You should always be an extra on the ward, so they can usually afford to work with you.
It also depends how academically experienced you are. If you have A levels and enjoy theoretical learning, the academic side will probably come easy to you. If you always struggled at school, be prepared to put in a lot of work on the book side of things.
If you've never worked as a carer or similar, you will have to put in a lot of energy on placement learning the basics and familiarising yourself with the care environment.
If all that hasn't put you off, then I would totally recommend nursing as a profession. I have never regretted doing my qualification. There are so many different types of job and areas that it qualifies you to work in; I have had 5 very different roles already in my career. It's the perfect job to have with children, because it's a female dominated profession and most nurses have kids, therefore most employers are understanding and flexible. You can work (and gain residency) in other countries, if you are interested in that. Even if one day, you want to do something very different, your nursing qualification will be respected in most jobs.
Then major downside is the pay. It doesn't matter how brilliant a nurse you are, unless you leave patient care and go into senior management, you will probably never earn more than £35k (or equivalent in the future). The money in the private sector is not much better, if at all. Conditions are good though; despite recent changes, the NHS pension is still one of the best on offer, and annual leave allowances are amazingly good.
My OH is very supportive about me going to uni. He knows it's something I should have done when I was younger. Yes I enjoyed school/college. Got my gcse's and alevels so should be ok in that aspect. Got my initial assessment for the access course in June.
Does anyone know what kind of level the numeracy is at? I need to revise as its 16 years since I did gcse maths, which I had a c in. But it's so easy to forget lol
Great! I reckon you should go for it. Numeracy is not going to be a problem. All that's required in nursing is that you can do basic calculations. If you struggle when you get to that bit, I would be surprised, but you can always do sopme revision.
What are your a levels in? Are you sure you need to do the access course?
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