I've been considering going into that field after high school. I was wondering if anyone here is a nurse and could tell me how hard it was to find time for horses while going to school/working? I'd love to be able to work a few days a week and have time for my ponies, too
I have been a RN for about 25 years. I have worked everything from management, ICU, medical sales and now have been working with hospice for about 8 years. I presently take on-call for hospice patients from 5pm - 8am Monday thru Thursday nights. I take the calls from home and each night varies on how busy I might be. Some nights I don't get any calls, some nights I am busy. I am salaried and get paid for 40 hours per week plus mileage and on-call visit time for anything after 3am.
This schedule is great for the horses. I ride every day and since I essentially have every Friday and Monday off as well as every weekend, it's great for the show season. I sleep in the mornings when I am busy and then tend to ride and fit in errands and household chores in the afternoon. It works for me but my kids are grown and I have a husband who is rarely home in the evenings.
There are so many options with nursing and right now it is a fairly recession proof profession. Good luck!
I graduate in May from nursing school. I still found time to ride in the afternoon/evening. I had lecture 2 mornings until about noon and one clinical day that was all day. I had to keep riding to keep my sanity!! LOL You will need plenty of time to study because I am not going to lie to you, it is a very demanding course but it is going to be well worth it. I have a 6 yr old, a husband, give lessons, and ride during the week, it can be done.
I have been checking into the job market and it seems that in most hospitals the nurses work 3-12hr shifts so that will leave plenty of time for riding. I think I will end up working every other weekend so that will put a damper on the showing but I will still be able to show some this year, until I get into a job where my weekends are mine I will deal with it.
I am currently finishing up my first year of nursing studies after deciding to go back to school to retrain. I worked full-time nights the whole time and maintained ownership of my five lovely horsey children.
First semester only had time on weekends as I attended class all week and had to allow sleep time. Second semester I have a bit more time as the two clinical days are earlier in the day.
Three live at home (2 young one to be broken in the spring and the old broodie mare-never been ridden a day in her life). the other two are boarded out. I broke the one young horse on weekends (bless her heart she has never tried anything with me and seems to retain what she learns so doesn't repeat the experience). My older gelding also lives there and I started the BO 5 yr. old gelding on weekends-which I had to leave his training behind in teh fall.
So when I have ridden it has been my young mre and the older show gelding.
Basically I look at it as, if you want to have time for horses you will keep your school work, work schedule to a time table or management so that you can participate in teh activity to whatever level you can. There were times I just went to the barn to say hello, groom for a bit and offer a treat. To them they still see you and know who yo are.
Thanks! I'm so glad that you've all found time to ride along with having time consuming majors. I'm just worried about the studying and finding time to do the things I love. But I guess anything is possible
I am finishing up my BSN degree this May. Yes, it is a demanding program, but will be worth in it the end. My first semester was hard to fit in ride time, 1-2 rides a week was all I could do, but there were some semesters I rode more than others. It will just depend on your schedule. In my final semester, I have lecture 1 day per week and clinicals on another. Plus I have a part time job at a hospital as well. Since I don't exactly own a horse (people have been very kind to me and have let me ride theirs) and don't have the extra money to show, it works. One of the perks of nursing is that you don't have to work in a hospital, you can do a bunch of different things
The best part is that I already have a job lined up after I graduate. I will be working on a bone marrow transplant unit. It will be two 12 hour shifts and two 8 hour shifts. I'll make it work with horses!
I just finished my RN last May. I also own/manage a show barn. Starting in August, I'll be working on my Masters. Going to school was the easy part! I had more time on my hands than I knew what to do with. Once I was hired as an RN, I asked for 32 hours per week, broken down into four 8 hour shifts. I thought that would give me plenty of time to train and show; it didn't, so my students are currently sitting on the back-burner until May, when I start two 12's and an 8 each week for a total of 32 hours. I work every other weekend, but my students are advanced enough they don't need me to hold their hand at every show. My husband does the farm work and I have someone that cleans stalls for me. If I need to have a weekend off that I am scheduled to work, I simply trade with someone. It's not a huge deal. The pay is fantastic. I just received an 8% raise and will get another in June. I'm an ER nurse and it is truly my calling. If you want something bad enough, you will find a way to do it!
Member of the "I Ride A Chestnut Thoroughbred Mare, So You Don't Scare Me Clique"
In Delaware I was making about 70K/year. That included second shift differential of 20%, weekend work, overtime, and charge premium. I really don't remember what base salary was.
I was a floor nurse on a physical rehab floor. I lasted all of 18 months. I hated the job, and although I don't regret getting the education (it's a "plan B" in the event I ever get laid off) I hope never to have to do it again.
I wasn't riding at the time and there is no way I could have. I regularly worked 45-50 hour weeks and we were required to attend all sorts of training that we had to schedule on our days off (got paid, but still).
I was so physically exhausted that I had to go around to my back deck to get into the house because I needed a rail to haul myself up the stairs and my front steps don't have one. My knees, neck, and hands hurt all the time. I couldn't have ridden if someone put me on the horse with a chain hoist and led me around.
I wouldn't wish nursing on my worst enemy (well OK, maybe my worst). Certainly experiences vary but I don't recommend it. Just my 2 cents.
thru nursing school giving lessons/training evenings and weekends, and hauling all the kids to the local shows about once a month. Hardest thing I ever did but I will never be out of work, and after you graduate you'll have the same amount of time as you would with any other job for the horses.
I truly believe nursing is a calling. It isn't a "I need XXX days off, but need to make XXX money, so I'll be a nurse" sort of job. There ARE those nurses out there, but I wouldn't want one looking after me
Half my class dropped out the first year. It IS tough, and not just in an academic, time-consuming way. It is physically demanding (though there are units worse than others). It is emotional. You are dealing with people at their absolute worst. They will call you names. Hit you. Throw things. The families will tell you that you suck. The patients will tell you that you suck
BUT there are the other patients, the 80% of them - whose lives DEPEND on you. And they know it. And they are grateful. And kind. And tell you that you were there for them, when no one else was. You will see people come into the world, and you will see people leave. You will be their voice when they have none. And you will be their strength and companion when they are totally, utterly alone.
My advice to you is this: the money is good. The flexibility is great. The options are limitless. But if you aren't the right type of person, it is pointless. By all means, shadow a few nurses, in different areas, to get a feel for it. Volunteer at a local hospital. If it's for you, you'll know
I have been a nurse for 30+ years. I was horseless during school(father made me sell my horse). My first two semesters I was too busy with classes and of course some partying to have had much time for riding. I guess if I still had a horse, I would have made time. My summer and 2nd two semesters, I would have had time. There are so many jobs that you can get as a nurse and if you really don't want patient contact you could work for a company as a drug rep or giving clinics on using equipment. I have worked the same job now for about 28 years. I work permanent nights and always find time to ride most days of the week. Of course, I have no kids or SO to have to divide my attention with my horse. The pay has been good(Think I am around the $90,000 mark). I work 5 eight hour night shifts have every Friday and Saturday off. I get plenty of holiday time and sick pay. Even in these trying economic times it is hard for hospitals to do without nurses.
I am a new BScN grad (finished April '07) working in Critical Care. I love it! I work 12 hour shifts, which means I get my hours in while working fewer days than if I was working 8 hours. I honestly don't find 12 hours to feel any longer than 8 (I worked a lot of 8's when I first started, but they're phased out to only 12 hours now). I currently am a part-timer working full-time hours, and manage to ride about 4 or five days a week. In a few days, I switch to a temporary full time line, which will be two days, two nights, five off. This will allow me to ride a minimum of 6 days out of 9, and most likely more than that once the weather is really nice.
Riding during school was easy, except on days when I had a 12 hour clinical. I started out University in a "regular" BSc program, and found the BScN course load to be much, much lighter than the BSc ever was. Yes, there's a lot of work, but as long as you keep on top of it, there is no reason to not have time to ride.
The only downside to the profession is that it eats a lot of weekends (in comparisson to Monday to Friday, 9 to 5's) which can make showing difficult. Be kind to your coworkers though, pick up extra shift and do favours in the off-season, and you'll most likely be able to switch your schedule around to even accomidate getting to shows.
It is a great profession if you get into an area you love. It's challenging, rewarding, well paying and secure. The variation within the profession is fantastic as well, which means that you will most likely be able to find a specific area that fits you perfectly, as well as move around if you need something a bit different without looking at a career change.
I got my RN over 40 years ago. Although I haven't worked in a paid position in years I would never regret the chance to have a nursing education. It carries over into every part of your life from sick kids and family to having an extensive working knowledge of lameness and illness in pets and horses!!! My father often joked that he sent me to Yale to nurse horses!! YUP!!!
It's a job that will never go away, too!!!
Thanks for the replies! I'm really interested in OB or labor/delivery. I think I could do it if got to do what I liked, like one of what you said. Even if I worked as a school nurse I would have really good hours. It's what I'm shooting for so hopefully it'll work out
Not a nurse, but I used to be in healthcare management. Starting salary for nurses at my facility was around $60K per year If you work a lot of overtime or get into management, you can make six figures. It's a great career path- high pay, flexible schedules (usually), and always in demand.
35+ years as a nurse, i worked and went to school and was a single parent at the time, so no horses until i started working
nursing has been a great choice for me, you can pretty much find a job that suits your needs as far as schedules, currently i work 3 12's, i'm thinking about going back to 4 8's, mon to thurs night shifts, that worked best for me in the past
i am still doing patient care and still love my job, i work in crisis psych right now in an inner city hospital, i hope i can keep working until i'm 70, it gets closer every year, altho i did tell my co workers if i start acting senile to pull me aside
you really can always find a job, you can ususally find some kind of tuition reimbursement if you want to go back to school, you have many opportunities in a variety of settings
in order to last 35 years tho you really have to love what you do, i can't imagine doing this if you don't love it
I'm a nurse. I have a combination of 2 part time jobs to keep things interesting. I work in the PACU (recovery room) and also the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit). I work between 24-36 hours a week, a combination of 8 and 12 hr. shifts (no nights). I like both units because they're so very different. That's one of the good things about nursing, it's so versatile. I didn't ride during nursing school because I took a break from horses during college, but I probably could have done both if I really tried. Nursing is a tough major though, and takes up a lot of time. Although there are days when I'm sick of the whole gig, I couldn't imagine doing anything else. I also can't think of another job as flexible as far as the horsey thing goes. I have my own farm with 4 horses and lots of other critters too. I also ride and event 2 of my horses full time. Right now, I'm lucky enough not to have to work any weekends, but I am on call for the PACU 1 weekend night a month. Even when I did have a weekend requirement, it was never a problem to switch weekends if I needed to be off for a horse trial. I say go for it! Good Luck!