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But It Will Take Years to Get My Degree!

July 30th, 2010 by – Marijke Durning

How many times have we heard a nursing collegue say he or she wanted to go back to school part time but they lament how long it would take to finish? Let’s say it would take seven years: “But it will take me seven years, I’ll be {insert age} by then!” Well, yes, that’s true, but in seven years, won’t you be seven years older even if you don’t follow the nursing program? Would you rather be many years older with your degree or that many years older but no farther ahead?

It’s hard to imagine how long it can take to finish a university degree. And part-time studies do take much longer than traditional full-time programs, but if you choose to take your time, studying slowly, the classes and courses begin to come together and, before you know it, the work is done and you’ve met your goal.

Unless your college or university has a set amount of time that is the deadline for completing a degree, then it doesn’t really matter how long it takes, does it?

The important thing is to have a plan. Look at the nursing program you would like to follow and make up a roadmap of where you see yourself going and in what direction. Figure out how many courses you can take and how often you can take them. Be realistic – too many nurses go back to school and then burn themselves out because they take on an unmanageable load. As you start taking your courses, revisit your plan regularly. You may need to slow things down, change the order of the courses you take, take a break, or even – you may feel you can speed things up a bit, even by a course or two. The whole idea of having the plan is so you don’t feel overwhelmed by how long it can potentially take to complete your nursing studies.

If you want to go back to school and are daunted by the amount of time it will take, just imagine how you will feel that many years from now if you don’t do it.  Don’t let yourself become discouraged before you even begin.

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