Becoming a nurse is a life-changing experience. However, finding the right accelerated nursing program for you isn't always an easy task. Our students at Utica College love the accelerated nursing program in Florida and New York. Below you will find an accelerated nursing program review from a current nursing student - Sarah Muth. Sarah is currently enrolled in Utica's accelerated nursing program in New York.
What is your expected graduation date?
I started the accelerated program in January of 2014 and I expect to graduate in April 2015.
I can’t believe that I am already in my fourth semester; I feel as if the program has flown by. When I reflect back on the previous semesters, I’m amazed at how much I have learned and feel as though I am well prepared to graduate to become a registered nurse.
What type of nurse do you want to be after graduation?
I plan to start my nursing career working in a hospital on a medical/surgical floor.
I would like to get a few years of experience of medical/surgical nursing down before I choose to move on to something more specialized. I love that nursing offers options in so many different fields to choose from. One of the many strengths of the ABSN program is the variety of courses and clinical rotations offered. This program really helps you explore each field of nursing. So far during this program, I have loved my medical/surgical and pediatric clinical rotations!
What was your previous bachelor’s degree in?
I received my previous bachelor’s degree in kinesiology with a concentration in exercise science and I minored in biology.
Kinesiology is described as the study of the kinetics of human movement, specifically the physiological, anatomical, mechanical, and psychological aspects. I have always had an interest in the way the human body works and my favorite undergraduate courses were anatomy and physiology & biomechanics. I was looking into careers such as physical therapy, occupational therapy, and chiropractic before I finally decided on continuing my education to nursing school. I find myself quite often relating what I have learned from my previous degree to my course work now, and many of my classmates who received degrees ranging from psychology to neuroscience will also agree with me.
Why did you want to become a nurse? What inspired you to pursue a career in nursing?
Nursing had always been a career path that I considered. I always knew that I wanted to do something to help others and I want to feel that I am making a difference in people’s lives. I also love nursing because it’s never the same from one day to the next, and it proves to be a challenging career where I would learn something new everyday. I think that knowing how much of an impact you can make by taking care of someone while they are ill or going through a hard time really attracts me to nursing.
Also, my mom was one of my biggest inspirations to pursue nursing. She has been a nurse for over 25 years and I have seen how many people she has helped. She works in a plastic surgeon's office where she is the only nurse on staff. She sees a wide variety of patients, many dealing with issues ranging from traumatic injuries to breast cancer. She has shown me that nursing isn’t just helping doctors or treating patients physically, it’s also about caring for them mentally and emotionally.
So many of the patients I meet say my mom held their hand at the most difficult time of their life and they couldn’t have gone though their experience without her. Being able to see how my mom’s hard work and the compassion she puts into caring for her patients makes a difference in their lives is what has led me to pursue nursing.
Out of all the nursing programs out there, why did you choose Utica College?
I chose Utica College because they offered the best course to completing a BSN. After graduating from my first undergraduate program, I was eager to continue my education and enter the work force. I looked to my mom for guidance since she is a nurse, and she directed me to look into accelerated nursing programs.
As I was looking into different programs in New York State, I decided I would have to relocate since there were no programs offered within a reasonable distance around my home that I would be able to commute to. I already had a bachelor’s degree, and I knew most hospitals would prefer an applicant who holds a BSN rather then an associate’s degree in nursing. Not only did I want an edge for employment, but I also wanted to receive a higher level of nursing education so I would feel well prepared and confident to take care of my future patients.
I chose this program knowing that I would receive this degree in just 16 months.
I chose Utica College because they offered the best course to completing a BSN.
I also chose Utica College because of the amount of clinical and skills hours the college offered. Since most accelerated programs are on average a year to two years, I was looking for a program that would give me the most hands-on experience possible while finishing my degree quickly. I have always been familiar with SUNY Upstate Hospital in Syracuse and knew that they had a great reputation as a superior hospital. Knowing that I would be participating in clinical hours at this teaching hospital, and others surrounding it, was a big deciding factor for me.
When I contacted the college to find out more information about their program, they were nothing but welcoming and happy to know I took interest in becoming a nurse. They sent me information about all aspects of the program, from courses to relocating. My admissions advisor contacted me just about every week to answer any questions through the admissions process and help me figure out my relocations details.
What advice would you give to anyone looking to become a nurse?
If nursing is a career you are passionate about, then pursue it. Nursing has the potential to be an extremely rewarding profession. Any nursing program is going to be tough, but if you have the desire and strong will to become a nurse, you will be able to get through it. Just like any other profession, you should take the time to research and explore the different fields that nursing has to offer. Once you find a few options that interest you, try and find the time to shadow a nurse in your chosen different fields. Also, reach out to nurses that you come in contact with and ask them about the profession and why they chose nursing.
The accelerated nursing programs at Utica College offer many benefits. One of them is that the students in the program are passionate about nursing and the ABSN program. If you would like to learn more about some of the other benefits of the ABSN program at Utica College, contact an admissions advisor.