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Start over with WGU MSN or transfer credits to a non-RA MSN?
#1
So, after dropping out of NP school for the second time, I've decided that I'm done with the NP path. It's just not working out for me at this point in my life, mostly because I cannot go to clinic and go to work every single day, and can't afford to take time off of work. Maybe I'll revisit the idea in a few years, but not today.

I have racked up 18 graduate credits with a 3.88 GPA. I've done really well at getting halfway to an MSN. I definitely want to finish my MSN, even if I'm not going to be an NP. But, here's my problem -- I have three options, none of which are ideal:

1) Transfer all 18 credits to American Sentinel University. I won't have to repeat any coursework, and the tuition is pretty affordable. It will cost me about $9,000 to complete, and I will probably finish in under a year. The downside is, ASU is only Nationally Accredited (in addition to CCNE). If I ever wanted to teach, I probably wouldn't be able to with an NA degree.

2) Enroll in WGU's MSN (Nursing Leadership option). None of my credits would transfer, so I would have to take a LOT of courses over. Seems like it wouldn't be a big deal, because I likely already know much of the content. However, what I've read on the new MSN curriculum is a little disheartening, with lots of students having problems. I could probably finish this program in under a year, because I'm familiar with the WGU model and have already completed a BSN and MBA with them. Which, by the way, creates another problem with academic incest. Again, not good if I ever want to teach.

3) Enroll in some other program and transfer, if I'm lucky, 12 credits. Would probably take 2+ years to complete, and would probably be nowhere near as affordable as WGU or ASU, due to the need to complete 24+ credits.

What are your thoughts? Is there a magical unicorn option that I haven't found -- an RA school that is reasonably priced that will accept all 18 of my graduate hours for transfer?

dmjacobsen http://donaldjacobsen.com
MSN Executive Leadership - The University of Memphis - 2016
MBA Healthcare Management - Western Governors University - 2015
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#2
Have you looked at Excelsior?
Not sure about nursing, but some of their masters programs allow 50% of the credits to be transferred.
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#3
chorizo Wrote:Have you looked at Excelsior?
Not sure about nursing, but some of their masters programs allow 50% of the credits to be transferred.

I did check out Excelsior. They're quite a bit more pricey than WGU and ASU. In addition to the higher tuition cost, they have several seemingly unnecessary fees tacked on (enrollment fee, graduation fee, and excessively costly application fee). Also, a couple of their courses are 4 semester hour courses, and my equivalent courses were only 3 semester hours, so I doubt that I would be given the higher credit level.

I did use Excelsior for my ADN. It served a purpose, but I'm not a big fan of Excelsior by any stretch of the imagination.

dmjacobsen http://donaldjacobsen.com
MSN Executive Leadership - The University of Memphis - 2016
MBA Healthcare Management - Western Governors University - 2015
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#4
dmjacobsen Wrote:I did check out Excelsior. They're quite a bit more pricey than WGU and ASU. In addition to the higher tuition cost, they have several seemingly unnecessary fees tacked on (enrollment fee, graduation fee, and excessively costly application fee).
You may wish to check out Eastern New Mexico University. They're a regional state university that is RA, and since the MSN program is so new, they're in the process of obtaining ACEN/NLN accreditation (their BSN program is already ACEN/NLN accredited).

It is free to apply, so you will not be wasting anything but your time. In addition, out-of-state students like myself are charged $230 per credit hour, which is dirt cheap for graduate level tuition.
• Master of Science in Nursing - Eastern New Mexico University (in progress)
• Bachelor of Science in Nursing - Western Governors University (3/2015)
• Associate of Science in Nursing - Platt College (3/2010)
• Diploma of Vocational Nursing - Casa Loma College (10/2005)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
• Professional licensure: LPN/LVN (1/2006); RN (5/2010)
• 16 brick & mortar credits from Oxnard College (2000 to 2001)
• 38 brick & mortar credits from Tarrant County College (2006 to 2008)
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#5
dmjacobsen Wrote:So, after dropping out of NP school for the second time, I've decided that I'm done with the NP path. It's just not working out for me at this point in my life, mostly because I cannot go to clinic and go to work every single day, and can't afford to take time off of work. Maybe I'll revisit the idea in a few years, but not today.

I have racked up 18 graduate credits with a 3.88 GPA. I've done really well at getting halfway to an MSN. I definitely want to finish my MSN, even if I'm not going to be an NP. But, here's my problem -- I have three options, none of which are ideal:

1) Transfer all 18 credits to American Sentinel University. I won't have to repeat any coursework, and the tuition is pretty affordable. It will cost me about $9,000 to complete, and I will probably finish in under a year. The downside is, ASU is only Nationally Accredited (in addition to CCNE). If I ever wanted to teach, I probably wouldn't be able to with an NA degree.

2) Enroll in WGU's MSN (Nursing Leadership option). None of my credits would transfer, so I would have to take a LOT of courses over. Seems like it wouldn't be a big deal, because I likely already know much of the content. However, what I've read on the new MSN curriculum is a little disheartening, with lots of students having problems. I could probably finish this program in under a year, because I'm familiar with the WGU model and have already completed a BSN and MBA with them. Which, by the way, creates another problem with academic incest. Again, not good if I ever want to teach.

3) Enroll in some other program and transfer, if I'm lucky, 12 credits. Would probably take 2+ years to complete, and would probably be nowhere near as affordable as WGU or ASU, due to the need to complete 24+ credits.

What are your thoughts? Is there a magical unicorn option that I haven't found -- an RA school that is reasonably priced that will accept all 18 of my graduate hours for transfer?

My thoughts are to make yourself take a break. I think the risks are pretty high and there are clearly lots of things that swirl around in the decision to find the best program, but if you sit out for a bit -3 months maybe? Then you'll have a bit of time to reflect on what happened before, what you really want, what makes sense, and how you can find the best path for you.

That happened to me (sort of) in a change-direction kind of way, and long story short, I knew that the path I was one was the wrong one, but I was letting momentum carry me forward anyway. It took a bit of time to realize I was going in the wrong direction, but once I did, it was smooth sailing. I wouldn't have found that if I were distracted by hurrying. When I was an apprentice chef, my chef used to tell me the busier you are the slower you should go. Being rushed by sense of urgency -when the best option isn't clear- will usually end in a bad decision. Good luck with whatever you decide!
Jennifer
10-year member

MS Applied Nutrition, 2014 Canisius College, NY
Premed/Prenursing Sciences, 2011 Ocean County College, NJ
BA Social Science, 2008 Thomas Edison State University, NJ
AA General Studies, 2008 Thomas Edison State University, NJ
AOS Culinary Arts,1990 Culinary Institute of America, NY

Homeschooling for College Credit
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#6
I understand the importance of an MSN under certain circumstances, but why is the MSN important to you? Do you have a specific goal that requires an MSN over your MBA? Creating more options? The COO at the hospital where I work is a BSN, MHA. He is not qualified to teach nursing at a community college or properly credentialed to be the Director of Nursing, but he is still at the top of the chain.
CLEP: Principles of Management (70), Info Systems and Computer Applications (61), Principles of Marketing (66), American Government (52), Analyzing and Interpreting Literature (56), Introductory Sociology (69), Introductory Psychology (69), Introduction to Educational Psychology (68), Human Growth and Development (68) DSST: Drug and Alcohol Abuse (60), Here's to Your Health (455), Introduction to World Religions (469), Management Information Systems (415), Ethics in America (443), Criminal Justice (434) ECE: Abnormal Psychology (B), Organizational Behavior (B) STRAIGHTERLINE: Business Statistics, Medical Terminology

BS Nursing, WGU - In progress
BS Liberal Studies, Excelsior - Need Capstone, on hold.
AS Nursing, St. Petersburg College - Dec. 2014
AA, Coastline Community College - Aug. 2009
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#7
TheCommuter Wrote:You may wish to check out Eastern New Mexico University. They're a regional state university that is RA, and since the MSN program is so new, they're in the process of obtaining ACEN/NLN accreditation (their BSN program is already ACEN/NLN accredited).

It is free to apply, so you will not be wasting anything but your time. In addition, out-of-state students like myself are charged $230 per credit hour, which is dirt cheap for graduate level tuition.

Thanks for the info on the ENMU program. I checked it out, and looks like their only concentration for the MSN is Education. I don't really care what the concentration is. But, looking at the curriculum, it looks like only two of my courses would transfer in. The price is dirt cheap, but would take me nearly two years to finish the program.

I know I'm being picky. But, I also know that I can't get something that's fast and cheap and also good.

dmjacobsen http://donaldjacobsen.com
MSN Executive Leadership - The University of Memphis - 2016
MBA Healthcare Management - Western Governors University - 2015
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#8
cookderosa Wrote:My thoughts are to make yourself take a break. I think the risks are pretty high and there are clearly lots of things that swirl around in the decision to find the best program, but if you sit out for a bit -3 months maybe? Then you'll have a bit of time to reflect on what happened before, what you really want, what makes sense, and how you can find the best path for you.

I think that this is great advice. I don't need the MSN right now. I just want to finish the MSN before my credits expire, as some programs won't accept credits for the MSN over 5 years old.

But, yes, a short hiatus is definitely in order to evaluate the options. I just need to take time to collect info on the options that are out there.

dmjacobsen http://donaldjacobsen.com
MSN Executive Leadership - The University of Memphis - 2016
MBA Healthcare Management - Western Governors University - 2015
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#9
Gaz Wrote:I understand the importance of an MSN under certain circumstances, but why is the MSN important to you? Do you have a specific goal that requires an MSN over your MBA? Creating more options? The COO at the hospital where I work is a BSN, MHA. He is not qualified to teach nursing at a community college or properly credentialed to be the Director of Nursing, but he is still at the top of the chain.

The MSN is more of a want than a need, for sure. I recognize that I'll actually have more opportunities with my MBA than I would with an MSN. However, because I'm 18 credits in with a pretty decent GPA, I feel an overwhelming need to finish it. Also, the MSN is more respected by other nurses than the MBA -- although, again, the MBA is actually more useful in my opinion.

dmjacobsen http://donaldjacobsen.com
MSN Executive Leadership - The University of Memphis - 2016
MBA Healthcare Management - Western Governors University - 2015
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#10
How about moving to Nashville, getting hired by Vanderbilt University Medical Center, and obtaining a Vanderbilt MSN for almost free as an employee benefit?
63 CLEP Sociology
75 CLEP U.S. History II
63 CLEP College Algebra
70 CLEP Analyzing and Interpreting Literature
68 DSST Technical Writing
72 CLEP U.S. History I
77 CLEP College Mathematics
470 DSST Statistics
53 CLEP College Composition
73 CLEP Biology
54 CLEP Chemistry
77 CLEP Information Systems and Computer Applications
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