Career Planning

I am as you all may know, 35 and married. No kids. Currently I am a CNA in a skilled nursing facility. I’m debating whether or not to undertake training to become an LPN. I think RN is too long and out of the way. LPN is 1.5 years that I can take concurrently with premed courses.

I know my end game is to become a physician.

Why then become an LPN? A CNA in a rehab unit is very arduous and physically demanding. While I can handle it I don’t want to risk “tweaking” anything. Sure I can just be a CNA for three years and then hit medical school. Or I can work as a CNA for the 1.5 years and the other 1.5 years as an LPN. I’m really not worried about LPN’s being “phased out” as it doesn’t affect me long-term.

I want to see what everyone’s opinion is. I do like what our LPN’s do at our facility and to gain a bit of pharmacology knowledge can’t hurt either! I guess I just want to know if I should just forgo the LPN training and keep my eye on the prize. Or perhaps the LPN training could somehow be beneficial.

Please help. I am deeply confused on this…


I had at first thought of putting myself in a similar postion and decided not to. I was thinking nursing as a back up if I didn’t get into med-school. Next semester I was thinking of taking the last two pre-nursing classes w/ the kaplan and Org Chem 2. I decided against this for reason that I didn’t want to bite off more than I could chew. That would be my advice for you as well. Working and taking your prereqs is hard enough without taking classes that you will only use for 1.5 years. Hope that helps.

I would tend to agree with Bailey. I would save myself some time and focus on my primary goal. You will inevitably get diverted and who knows what will happen.

Shoot for your dream. Go for it and do not hesitate.

Good luck

Would you like to spend the rest of your life as an LPN if you don’t go to med school? If so, become an LPN. I doubt if it will hurt your chances at medical school. But if you don’t want to be an LPN, don’t do it as a “stepping stone”. I am sure that admission committees will see right through that, and I doubt they’ll think too highly of it. Just my opinion.

I hear you about the arduousness of the work - I remember! Maybe you should instead consider switching the unit where you work.

The LPN classes will NOT help you in any appreciable way for medical school. I helped write the curriculum for an LPN program as well as teaching in two RN programs, and the level of information would not be helpful (based on my 2 months of med school so far, of course !

Take a genetics, embryology, or biochemistry course in addition to the minimum prerequisites if you want to help yourself - that will be more helpful IMHO.