From Post-Grad Setbacks to Pre-Nursing Success

By ThriveAP Contributor and New Nursing Student Ashley Prince

It’s great to be back, ThriveAP! It’s been quite the summer. In these past few months, I got braces (again!) and was mistaken for a high schooler no less than ten times. I graduated from Ohio State with an honors Neuroscience B.S. and moved back home to Cleveland. We threw my younger sister her high school graduation party, where I decided that if planning a wedding is anything as involved as that affair I’m eloping. I backed my poor car into a pole, and a long standing foot injury finally got fixed. And through it all, I’ve been steadily preparing to begin Baldwin Wallace’s Accelerated BSN program, starting August 24th.

Transitioning into this program wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. I felt like I took three steps backward when I graduated, and was initially surprisingly sad. I was the only one out of my friends who moved back home, and while my parents are great, it’s very weird living under someone else’s roof with their rules again. I’m also going into a second Bachelor’s program, not a Master’s or Ph.D. Even though it’s the program I really want, it still made me feel inferior to my friends’ upcoming graduate degrees. People began asking me why I was going through all this trouble to “just end up a nurse” since I was smart enough to be a doctor. Ouch. I ended up throwing myself a little pity party after graduation. But soon the emails with onboarding requirements for the program started flooding in, and I knew I couldn’t wallow anymore. I picked myself up, brushed the dust off, and moved on. This was the program I wanted, I decided that anyone who made me feel inferior to it had better get out of my way.

There was a lot to do to prep for the program. Physicals, TB tests, uniform orders, drug screenings, CPR classes, calendars, geez. The director of the program is former Navy, and runs the program in a very military-style way. I got a taste of this military logic when I decided to purchase my own white (who picks white?!) scrubs instead of the school-issued ones, because the school ones are ill-fitting and made of itchy fabric. I had to return them because my purchased scrubs might have different pocket sizes than the official ones, making me unrecognizable in the hospital as a student. It was then that I learned it might be better to beg for forgiveness than ask for permission. I went out on a limb and started a Facebook group for the class, hopefully creating a place where we can get to know each other and make study groups. Or at least learn the best way to get stains out of those awful uniforms. Turned out everyone loved the idea and we’re already making friends before Orientation has even started! At least that’s one thing to cross off the list.

There’s still a lot to do. I don’t have my class schedule or a parking pass. I still need to visit the campus a few more times to learn where I’m going. I may have had a few setbacks, but I learned it’s OK to feel a little down as long as you can pick yourself back up. I’m so excited (and a little nervous) to start this intense program, and get on track to starting my career as a Nurse Practitioner!

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2 thoughts on “From Post-Grad Setbacks to Pre-Nursing Success”

  1. Hi, Ashley! I also live in Ohio and graduated with a B. A. in Psychology from OSU back in 2005, and am currently in the process of taking the required prereq courses for accelerated nursing programs. My ultimate goal is to become a PMHNP. I am vacillating between applying to direct entry MSN programs vs. ABSN programs. What made you decide to do the ABSN program first and then go on to an NP program? I would love to hear your input! It is a very difficult decision, given the fact that I have been out of academia for so long and just turned 32!

  2. I am so glad someone posted about this subject. I’m in the same boat in everything you just wrote. I have no idea how to or prepare for my absn program in the fall. I’m going over general concepts in anatomy and physiology so I hope that’s okay. My goal is to become a nurse practitioner and even though I could’ve done the direct entry program I wanted to make sure I knew which path of nursing I wanted to pursue before spending tons of money on a graduate program. I’m still in a little funk about getting a bachelor’s but I hope that once the program starts I can see my career path starting. Thanks again!

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