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Posts posted by Mom0012

  1. 43 minutes ago, GoodGrief1 said:


    If you can swing the finances for the extra year, I think that is a great idea.

    One issue some run into on the 4 year BSN track (happened to a friend's daughter recently) is that many programs require being accepted into nursing formally at the end of sophomore year. In competitive programs, even those with decent grades may find themselves without that acceptance and looking at having to wait a year to reapply or transfer schools. If you are doing a different four year degree, and then applying for accelerated, it seems like it would be much less disruptive if you didn't get in on the first try.

    I do not remember my college having to approve people taking the NCLEX past providing documentation that it was an accredited program, but that was waaaaay back in the day, so I suppose things might be different now. I actually took the NCLEX in an entirely different state than the one in which I graduated.

    Yes, if she does decide to do nursing in college, it will be a direct admit program. UAH offers this option to their honors students at a great price. No way is she going to enter college hoping to be admitted to a nursing program. I’m still thinking the extra year might be the way to go for this dd, though. Thanks.

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  2. 38 minutes ago, fourisenough said:

    Honestly, not brutal at all. My senior has reported that all of her classmates are always stressed out and panicked, but she thinks it’s because they don’t have very good work habits (and possibly didn’t have as rigorous high school educations so they’re not as well-prepared). It’s a lot (volume of material to learn) and the tests can be nit picky  (the NCLEX style questions seem intentionally tricky), but it’s isn't terribly difficult.

    She treats school like a job: she studies many hours, always shows up to class having read and studied the topic in advance, and tackles papers/projects well in advance, but she has plenty of time to exercise, shop/cook healthy food from scratch, sleep 8+ hours per night, read for pleasure, visit friends/family on weekends, etc. 

    Thank you, fourisenough! That is good to know!

  3. If I could do things over, I would skip the AP English and go with Sue Ellen Turscak’s Great Books class at CLRC. You would need to get a prep book and spend some time practicing the essay writing for the exam so that you are familiar with the types of essays (that’s pretty much what my dd did with AP Lit) last year. I paid a tutor $20 every couple of weeks for a few months to give her feedback on her essays.

    There is a ton of writing in the GB class. The students write a paper each week and then two longer papers each semester. They also answer comprehension questions fully, using quotes to support their points which is a fabulous skill to get down. And they get detailed feedback from the teacher. There is also a lot of heavy reading. That reading will prepare them well for the multiple choice part of the exam and, more importantly, for anything they may want to read in the future,

    This is the best class my dd has ever taken. I only wish I had signed her up when I first found out about it. We love Ms. Turscak. She puts a ton of work into the class. Part of what is so wonderful about the particular class my dd is in is the other students. They are all highly engaged. Right now, a bunch of them have gotten together outside of class and are doing a reading and discussion group. Others have organized a political discussion group. My dd has seriously considered continuing with the class even when she heads off to college next year. Lol!

    Roy Speed’s classes have always looked very good to me as well. We have never had the opportunity to try them, though.

    ETA: I should be more like Rootann and not “recommend” the class because, if there is one thing I have learned over the years, no matter how great my dd may think a class is, it isn’t going to be a fit for every kid. 

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  4. 3 hours ago, Mom2mthj said:

    I am interested in where you are finding out they reduce aid after freshman year.  Is there a place to research that sort of thing for various colleges?

    Here is a link that is at least a starting point for describing which colleges meet need and how much of the need and for who. It also classifies colleges by whether they consider need in their admissions process. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Need-blind_admission

    I don’t know how accurate it is, but I think it explains at least some misperceptions I have had about aid when I started this process with my dd. I did not realize there were so many different categories for “meets need” schools. For Rochester, it says they do not meet full need and also: “meets 95% of need with the exception of students who are in their senior year, for which financial aid is curtailed significantly despite slim changes in family financial situation)[44]

    There was a poster on these boards who recently had to pull her dd from Rochester because of a significant cut in aid. After that, I did some googling and found other stories where students had experienced something similar.

    The other problem with Rochester for us, is I *think* we’d be paying full freight that fifth year for the BSN (I think you can only get aid for 4 years, but maybe I’m wrong?) and their tuition is going to be $85,000 or more by then. Not something we will do.

    ETA: Another interesting fact that makes a huge difference for some in FA - some colleges consider your home equity and some don’t. For middle class families, colleges like Princeton and Harvard do not consider home equity which greatly increases aid amounts. Of course, those colleges are nearly impossible to get into, lol. I’m not sure how many CSS profile colleges do not include home equity and if there is a good resource for this somewhere. FAFSA-only private schools do not consider home equity because the FAFSA doesn’t include it. I was searching for a list of FAFSA-only schools but the main thing that pops up is the list of CSS Profile schools.

    ETA 2: Another link http://www.campustimes.org/2016/09/11/students-urs-financial-aid-theories-dont-always-match-reality/

  5. 1 hour ago, TarynB said:

    You've probably already done this, but just in case (or for others reading) you might want to double-check that the schools on her list will accept her science AP/DE credits (if she has any) if she does go in as a BSN major. At two of my son's potential schools, the nursing programs will not accept transfer credits in any of the natural sciences - biology, chemistry, anatomy, etc. They want students to take those natural science classes at their campus with their instructors, so the students learn those subjects with the depth with which they want them taught.

    Thank you. I have looked at the colleges main website where they say what credits will transfer, but have not specifically checked in to whether the nursing schools will not allow certain credits. Those are all factors that will go into her final decision and that we will need to get nailed down at some point.

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  6. 1 hour ago, fourisenough said:

    I think this is a good way of looking at it. Sounds like your DD isn’t 100% sure she wants to be a nurse? That’s totally okay and if that’s the case, I think your strategy is probably very smart. It isn’t the cheapest or most efficient way to get to a BSN, but I realize that isn’t always the goal.

    Even though both my girls knew they wanted to be nurses, there have been moments where they’ve felt like their undergrad education was very ‘vocational’ with tons of multiple choice exams in the NCLEX style. Bleh! On the other hand, each has chosen to take at least one non-nursing class every semester that is purely for their own pleasure/interest (thanks to their AP credit wiggle room). This has prevented them from a double-major or minor, but has given them a broad, satisfying education. My DD’s best friend is a nursing & health care administration double major. I think this is fairly common at their school but was of no interest to my girls.

    The second degree BSN programs in our area are 4-5 semesters and they require completion of bio, chem, anatomy & physiology, and psychology as prerequisites. If your DD planned to go this route, it would be important to satisfy those prerequisites during her first undergrad and prepare to spend up to two years rather than one year earning a BSN.

    This is very interesting to hear you say and what we’ve been left thinking much of nursing school is. That has been a bit of a revelation. My dd sees many benefits to going the NP rather than the PA route, and yet she greatly prefers the PA model of education. She already has her EMT certification and went through all the training for that last spring and what we’ve been reading about the demands of nursing school sounds like exactly what she experienced in the EMT training.

    I am all about efficiency and frugality, but in my dd’s case, it may be better to wait on the nursing. The program near us is accelerated so she could do it in one year. As far as the prerequisites, my dd has already met the ones you mentioned and they will probably be “too old” by the time she may be ready for nursing school, so she’ll have to keep that in mind if she decides to go the second BS. 

    I like what your dd’s have done with carving out a class each semester where they can follow their academic interests. I thought my dd could do that with Latin but it looks like it would involve taking an overload each semester — at least for her junior and senior year. And maybe that would be okay. Many semesters, the required nursing class credits are 16 credit hours without any other classes. I know your girls are very bright and academic. Did they find the classes/clinicals as brutal as people say they are from a stress perspective? That’s a big factor here. If it is going to be majorly stressful, then maybe she’d rather do it in one year.

  7. Thank you! The more we look into this, the more I think my dd should enjoy her college years and major in the subject she loves the most and then do a one year accelerated program if she still wants the BSN. That seems to be the way she is leaning as well. It sounds like there is a lot of (unnecessary?) stress and pressure put on nursing students in the regular programs. Is that a correct perception?

    Rochester has a dual degree program that allows you to do precisely that, which my dd loves the look of, but I have now read too many stories about them drastically reducing aid after freshman year to have her apply there.

  8. 12 hours ago, fourisenough said:

    I have two DDs in BSN programs currently. One will graduate in 2020 and the other in 2022.

    No, it doesn’t matter where you earn your BSN as long as you can pass the NCLEX. Graduate school admissions are based on your undergrad gpa, work experience, references, and in some cases GRE scores. 

    My girls each entered college with a good amount of AP credit. Minors and double majors would have been options for both of them, had they chosen to pursue them. 

    NCLEX pass rates are a bit of trick. Schools generally won’t give students permission to sit for the exam if they haven’t demonstrated that they will pass. Basically, a school can control their pass rate by weeding out (and requiring remedial coursework of) anyone who is unlikely to pass the test. Also 2nd degree BSN programs are filled with adult students who, by definition, have already earned a degree and may have many years of work experience. These adult students may be more mature and career-focused than typical undergrads.  

    After I posted, I realized the higher NCLEX pass rate (it was 100% last year) is likely due to it being a highly sought after selective program with mature students.

    I’m really not seeing double majoring as a possibility at the schools I’m looking at even though my dd will have a lot of AP/DE credit as well. At some schools, she’d be coming in with 60 credits. At UAH, where the NCLEX rate is fairly low at 84% and also has a pretty big attrition rate, they specifically state you may be able to minor in another subject. It just seems odd to me, but maybe regular undergrad programs include a lot more clinical hours than accelerated second degree programs?


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  9. My dd and I are continuing to look at nursing programs and this is something we are wondering about.

    Does it matter where you get your nursing degree if your long term goal is to become a Nurse Practitioner? 

    Also, why are the undergrad BSN’s so demanding that it is difficult to squeeze in a minor and impossible to double major when an accelerated second degree BSN can be obtained in one year? Interestingly, the accelerated BSN program we are looking at has higher NCLEX pass rates than some of the highly regarded schools that offer undergrad nursing as a 4 year program.

  10. 2 hours ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

    I'd much rather deal with individual school apps than the CA. I'm so glad my Dd isn't applying to a CA school bc the U app is so much easier to deal with.

    FWIW, I personally cannot imagine making a 4 yr educational decision based on whether or not a school uses its own app or the CA, especially since my kids received huge merit awards from schools where they filled out the individual school app. 

    Uh, these schools were not her top choices or even in the middle. They were schools we were thinking about as back ups to her safeties and decided we didn’t need them. Perhaps I was being too flippant if I left you with the idea that I am so inept that I would refuse to put in applications to schools that would be great fit for my dd because the app isn’t through the CA. Not what I meant at all. Just trying to commiserate on the commiseration thread. 🙂

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  11. 1 hour ago, Another Lynn said:

    Actually I’m really happy that several of the schools ds is interested in don’t take the CA because it let us avoid it altogether and those schools typically have simpler applications, fwiw. 

    I have noticed those applications are simpler. But, since we’ve already invested hours and hours in the CA, the last thing we want to tackle is extra applications. But, I can see it would be a definite advantage if none of the schools you were applying to were CA schools. 

    I would think not using the CA would really reduce the the number of apps a school would receive. Maybe that is the point? It makes weeding through applications simpler for the school? But then, think of all the application fees they’d be forgoing.

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  12. On 10/10/2019 at 7:05 PM, mirabillis said:

    We're in CA and they have their own special app... that hasn't even begun yet! (That ends Nov 30) This is just the standard Common App for the vast majority of ds's schools.... 

    Can I reiterate JoJosmom? Noooooooooooooooooooooooooo............. 😅

    What is it with the schools that don’t use the common app? One of our state schools that my dd was considering doesn’t use it and we decided to just skip it. There are a few schools like that and as soon as I see they aren’t using the CA, I’m like, forget it. Not worth it unless it was a school on the top of my dd’s list.

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  13. I can definitely commiserate. I started on my part last spring and just finalized everything a few weeks ago. My dd got her CA essay and one of her longer supplemental essays done over the summer thanks to Maya’s college essay class. She’s knocked out more since then, but she still has a few essays left, depending on how many more apps we decide to complete.  It seems that many of the colleges she is applying to have 2-3 supplemental essays in addition to the CA essay. Yuck!

    We have done a bunch of college visits and knocked a few off of our list. Between the two selective state schools she’s applied to and the non-selective school my ds is at, I actually think she’d be happier at my ds’ school in their honors program, which is quite a surprise, but nice because it takes some of the pressure off and has led us to apply to fewer schools than we’d originally planned. 

    Anyway, it feels like it is a never ending process and I’m starting to think some of her reach schools may not really have been worth the effort. I’m kind of starting to wish selective colleges had never been put on our radar when I see how happy and low stress the experience for her could be at my ds’ school. We just attended a day there where she got to hear a panel of students in their honors and leadership programs and she sat in on an upper level Latin class where the students were far more engaged and welcoming than at our state flagship/public ivy. And she wouldn’t have to spend 9-16 hours a day on academics as recommended by the student she shadowed at the other public ivy! 

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  14. 11 hours ago, Matryoshka said:

    Yes, exactly this.  I did the same thing for my kids - I helped them map out what they had to do when based on what they said they might want to do.  They have indeed changed things up, but because there was a plan, and a plan B, and they knew how to plan after seeing what I did to put it together, they're in good shape.

    Some majors have a lot of wiggle; others have almost none.  Easier to go from the latter to the former than the other way 'round...  And if they want to do an internship/coop or study abroad or other interesting thing - what needs to be done when to have that be possible and still get done in time  - unless you or they have lots of money and no worries about finishing in 4 years (rather than 6 - how/when did that become the benchmark??!!)  Most Advisors these days spend no time getting to know the kids; they just give them a standard template based on minimum requirements for the least demanding majors.  Which only works if that's what the kid ends up wanting to do.  Seems like it used to be Advisors were profs in the department who knew the requirements, but it seems like nowadays they're young, virtually untrained grad students who may well have no experience in the major they're advising in, and can steer you very wrong.

    The internship is a another big thing that has to be worked in. My ds needs to do an internship the summer before he takes a certain class which is tied to his scholarship. There is no way I would have understood all the planning required at this age. Things were much easier to navigate when I was in college.

    I guess I’m a bit of a weird one in that I love figuring this stuff out. My ds was worried about his last accounting exam and thought he had done poorly, so he wanted me to go over the history degree requirements while he’s home on break. I went through and planned out scenarios for just a history degree, history with a public policy concentration and history on the path to teaching, lol. Then he found out he got an A on his test and decided maybe accounting is for him after all.🙂

    I’ve tried to get the dd of the guy that cuts my hair to meet with me so I could help her figure out her classes since she was telling me what crappy counseling they have at the cc. I figured out all the classes my niece needed to take at the cc and researched degree options for her. When my dd goes to college next year, I’d love to work as a guidance counselor at the cc, but I don’t know what kind of credentials I’d need to do that.



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  15. 5 hours ago, Matryoshka said:

    Yes, all of this.  I am not at all a fan of telling kids what to do - but I do think asking them questions that help them at least narrow down their options is time very well spent.  I'm a hands-on Advisor with my kids, especially the first year or so as they're settling in.  By asking them questions and showing them how to figure out different course progressions based on their potential interests, they have quickly become adept at figuring out on their own how to navigate this.

    Yes, I think there are many, many kids that need help with the planning and are getting very little guidance from an advisor. I’ve spoken with a few young adults locally who are frustrated with the poor advice they’ve been given at the cc. 

    I figured out the whole 4-year plan for my ds during his freshman year so that he would meet his gen ed requirements (of which there were many!) and the business prerequisites AND get in all the classes for his leadership minor which his scholarship is tied to. This involved planning for a couple of summer classes last summer in order to keep his workload manageable. There is no way ds would have done this during his freshman year and there is very little wiggle room for error if he is to graduate in 4 years.




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  16. OP, if there is a chance your ds may want to be a business major, you might at least encourage him to start with meeting the prerequisites for the business school while exploring other options. My ds was torn between between history and accounting. We told him it was his life, his choice and that we would fully support him in whatever direction he went, but that if he didn’t want to teach, he needed to get over to the career center and figure out what he could do with a history degree. I don’t want to be a dream crusher, but not having a marketable degree could be just as much of a dream crusher further down the road, IMO.

    This year, he decided to go with accounting. But, had he not been willing to start working on some of the required classes for the business school last year, I don’t see that he would be able to graduate in 4 years. There are about 25 required classes for an accounting degree but only 11 required for history. I had no idea there could be such a big difference! 

    If my ds changes his mind, he can easily still get a history degree.

  17. I agree it is very common, but with the cost of college now, it’s something I wish I had begun exploring more directly with my dd earlier on. I went more with the idea that it is a common issue and it’s one I had myself and I figured it out, so she will too. Then the reality of the costs set in and we started investing some time in career exploration.

    Some things we’ve done over the last year that have led to her narrowing down her interests to a couple of fields:

    Volunteer work in the medical field

    Meyers Briggs Test

    Interviewing people who have careers she is interested in - nurse practitioner, SLP, CPA, Latin teacher

    Birkman Careertyping test https://birkman.com/the-birkman-method/careertyping/ - This is about $100 But was well worth it IMO. The results seemed right on for my dd’s interests and personality.

    I am considering having her do the Johnson O’Connor aptitude testing. Yes, it is $1,000, which is a lot of money for us but when I think one year at college - $25,000 vs aptitude testing - $1,000, it seems like a no-brainer. My dd has narrowed her interests down to the point where it may not be necessary, depending on the college she chooses, though.





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  18. The school profile gets uploaded in the profile/general profile/school profile section — not the student-specific section.

    Mine was two pages. The first page addressed our geographic location, local demographics, my educational background, our approach to home schooling and our grading guidelines. 

    The second page listed graduation requirements and I also had a section for educational partners, such as Lukeion, CLRC, etc.

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  19. The pace that Lukeion goes is unnecessary and not really conducive to long term success with a language, imo. As you know, my dd shares a love of languages with your DD1, but we were fortunate to have done Latin 1 and 2 elsewhere at a much slower pace. Those first couple of years of a language are so important for a strong foundation, and rushing through it doesn’t serve many students well. My dd took Greek I last year with Lukeion and the main comment she made to me was how it felt like they were just rushing through the material. She did well in the class and on the NGE, but she really doesn’t feel it gave her the best foundation.

    And, yes, I know they cover the material even more quickly in college classes, but I do wonder if that is why so many students in this country never truly master a second language.

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  20. Thanks, Lanny, for the heads up about the forms being available. I spent much of the last couple of days completing the FAFSA for each of my kids and the CSS Profile for my dd and then uploading all the required docs for the CSS in Idoc. Much of that time was spent requesting forgotten passwords for multiple accounts. What a pain!

    Anyway, I feel a great sense of accomplishment. Applications are in and FA documents so now we just wait and see what happens and hope for the best.🙂

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  21. Can colleges see which other colleges my dd is applying to on this? I know they can’t on the FAFSA, but I wasn’t sure about the CSS Profile and if there is any thought involved in how they should be listed.

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  22. 1 hour ago, Frances said:

    My son took classes at the local LAC during high school. The program he was part of allowed him to take a half load per semester almost for free. At the time, he was surprised that students in general didn’t seem as engaged as he was in the classes and all of the extra outside academic opportunities offered, such as talks by visiting professors. He understood all of it much better once he was in college full time as a STEM major in an an honors college program where the majority of honors college requirements were reading, writing, and discussion intensive humanities courses. That heavy course load combined with adjusting to college life away from home made him understand the behavior of the full-time undergrads at the LAC much better. 

    I think your daughter will be able to find her tribe and plenty of academic challenge at either of the schools under discussion. Taking graduate courses, choosing upper level courses to meet distribution requirements where possible, adding another completely unrelated major, taking 300 and 400 level courses outside the major, doing independent study with a professor, getting involved in research, studying abroad, etc. are all ways people I know have done this at a variety of schools. 

    I definitely think she’ll find academic challenge. But, what she really wants is to be around other students who are academically engaged. Her two favorite classes, by far, over the years have both been with other students who inspired and motivated her with their own level of engagement and with the unique perspectives that they enthusiastically brought to the class. I guess she’s lucky to have experienced that twice in high school.

    And I hope my post isn’t coming across as knocking the other students. I’m sure those students are doing what they need to succeed and many of them will go on and be very successful. A lot of people look at college as a means to an end and their focus is mainly on their grades. That’s definitely how I was in college and I have had a wonderful life. But since we’re applying to colleges for my dd, I’m trying to find the best fit for her. I’m thinking UVA and W&M are both great colleges, but offer very different things and trying to weed through which might be the better for her, assuming she even gets in.

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