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Advice on nursing...

Hollett, Lisa trauma-list@trauma.org
Wed, 26 Jun 2002 07:55:20 -0500


Russ,
Trauma is great.  I've been in nursing for over 20 years and have worked in
a variety of areas and I always circle back to ER and trauma.

With regards to the education aspect I would say go for the AA and then work
on your Bachelor's if you want to with your hospital helping to pay part of
your tuition.  My ex has a diploma degree from a hospital nursing school and
11 years of experience.  He is making about the same as I am with a BSN and
21 years of experience.  That is in no way a put down for education.  I have
gone ahead and gotten my Master's and still plan on doing more school when I
can afford it.

I know you want to jump in and hit trauma hard but spending a year working
ICU after you get your RN is a great place to hone your skills so when you
start working in the ER the "basics" will come easier (vents, hard sticks,
ICP monitors etc etc).  I've worked ICU,SICU,ER, OB, Flight, community and
ran a community college paramedic program......and I still come home to
trauma.

Best of luck.  Let me know if I can be of any assistance.

Lisa Hollett RN, BSN, MA, MICN, CEN
Trauma Case Coordinator
Trauma Service
Methodist Medical Center
1441 N. Beckley
Dallas, TX 75265
lisahollett@mhd.com
214-947-8408
214-947-8422 fax


-----Original Message-----
From: Russ Pasley [mailto:rpasley@marmotmountain.com]
Sent: Tuesday, June 25, 2002 4:16 PM
To: trauma-list@trauma.org
Subject: Advice on nursing...


Greetings,

I have a quick question to shoot out at any trauma/emergency room nurses
that would be kind enough to take a moment to offer me some advice or
insight.

I am about to pursue a career in nursing, more specifically working in
trauma.  I have had experience in the past as an EMT with the National Park
Service as a ranger.  Working on certain incidents in Yellowstone made me
realize that I wanted to follow a career path in trauma nursing.  I worked
well with my fellow colleagues (rangers, nurses, and doctor) , was
respected by them, and encouraged to pursue a career in emergency medicine.


My question is how does one work their way into trauma?  I do not want to
get into nursing to be a floor nurse in a hospital, work in a retirement
home, or in a doctor's office.  Is there a danger of being "pigeon-holed"
early in your career?  Right now I am starting to volunteer in the ER at
San Francisco General.  This is the main trauma center for this side of the
bay.  My plan is to reinstate my EMT and to then work my way into a tech
position in the ER if possible. This way while I am in school the ER staff
will get to know me, my character, and my abilities.  Does this sound like
a good plan?

The only other question is that of an Associate's degree vs a Bachelor's
degree.  Both qualify you to sit for the state exam for an RN.  For the AA
I have my prerequisite classes done, can get into a program now, and be
done in 4 semesters.  Pursuing the BS will take quite a bit longer.  I'm 40
and want to start things happening right now!  I guess what I am asking is
will the AA hinder my goals as opposed to getting the BS?

Again, I would be very appreciative to any of you out there who could take
a bit of time out of your busy lives to offer me some advice.

Thanks much and peace to you,

Russ Pasley







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