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health care field and skill bridge


kiana Cruz San Diego, CA

I am a boatswains mate in the Navy and have no prior medical experience but would like to pursue a career in nursing.
I am looking for healthcare related work, preferably medical assistant, that would support me using the skill bridge program to help my transition out of the military.

the link below explains the program:

19 July 2019 2 replies Military to Civilian Transition



Jodie Prieto-Rodriguez Pittsburgh, PA


Complete the Skill bridge program (see if they have a Certified Nursing Assistant program instead). Search for Nursing schools were you want to go-to school. If you have college already they will want additional Biology, Chemistry, and possibly math courses.

While knocking out your lower division or pre-requisite credits for Nursing school; research the programs you may want to enter:

o ADN-RN: Associate Degree Registered Nurse with successful NCLEX completion and state license. Entry level Nurse; often not in leadership positions, more floor work oriented.

o BSN-RN: Bachelor Degree Registered Nurse with successful NCLEX completion and state license. Mid-entry level nurse, usually ends up in leadership positions, conducts floor work, supervisory duties, and can be called upon to manage clinical programs and contribute to research.

ADN-to-BSN RN Program: Otherwise known as "Bridge" programs. Lower division credits are acquired at one school, while the nursing classes are taught at another. Usually requires concurrent enrollment at 2 schools.

ADN-to-BSN RN online: After successful completion of the ADN RN program; some nurses apply and complete the BSN courses online.

o MSN/PHD RN: usually require 2+ years experience in floor nursing and/or management. Consider application if the aforementioned career paths resonate with you.

A great deal of these paths are determined by your funding, proximity to school or choice, and other personal factors.

A few things that prospective nursing students tend to overlook when applying are the following:

o studying for TEAS test to get into a nursing school (this score is crazy important for some states, as it, and your GPA, determine where you will stand on the admission ranking.

o English and Math; for some reason a great amount of nurses I have managed and worked with thought for some reason they would not have to do either of these subjects proficiently. You dont have to be a novelist or rocket scientist, you just have to stay in the top 5th of your class ( b-grade and above). It pays off whenever you attempt to specialize or apply for leadership positions

O electives: Take them seriously and get a good grade. I have seen many prospective students get shelved on admission for barley passing a gym class... it shows a lack of discipline and follow through.

Dr. Hank mentioned some Nurse recruiters, and they are very helpful; however, they will not engage in serious conversation with you about employment until you are on track to graduate, NCLEX completed, and state license obtained. If you have a high GPA, and your deans letter confirming that your are on track to graduate speaks on their confidence with your NCLEX, the recruiter will play a more active hand in advising and guiding employment options.

Hospital Systems recruit directly from nursing schools. The Hospitals have legal agreements to provide the clinical setting in which students conduct their clinical hours and build a network to be hired. The best performing, working relationship, and local students are usually offered an opportunity to apply; each hospital has a limited number of slots, apply to more than one.

Hospital systems also offer specialty training to new grad nurses; usually at the end of their second year, or upon employment (it really depends on what position you apply for and get accepted too). The certification is transferable and helps with your career options down the road e.g. perioperative, pediatric, obstetrics, Intensive care, etc....

Volunteer as much as you can, in as many different clinical settings you can.

The military also has nursing career and educational opportunities AFTER you are qualified. you may be done with the service for now; however, many successful doctors and nurses serve in the reserve and are often a mini-network within a greater network.


Henry ("Dr. Hank") Stevens Fort Lauderdale, FL

Sorry to be so brief, but I am out of the country and grid connection is spotty. (I will be state-side >8/4/19).

I have worked with and for hospitals for many years. I cannot remember a time when I was affiliated with a hospital that DID NOT offer some kind of material support to those interested in a registered nurse career. Thus, bottom line, contact some local hospitals, seek out their NURSE RECRUITER and let him/her explain their program to you.

Feel free to contact me on the more private EM at

Dr. Hank

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