Laura Gonzalez felt stuck. A hard-working LPN with a decade's experience, she knew she had the skills and knowledge to do more—and with two kids at home, she wouldn't mind a higher salary, either. But every time Laura applied for a promotion, she got passed over. Instead, the job went to someone who had less experience than Laura, but who also had an RN certification.
Laura wanted to go back to school. She wanted to get her BSN degree and become an RN, maybe even an APRN. But as a full-time working mom, where was she going to find time to attend college classes? Or, for that matter, the money? Forget about it. She tried some online schools, but they lacked guidance and structure and left her feeling overwhelmed, unsupported, and unmotivated. After a year with a leading online school, Laura hadn't come any closer to her goal—but she had watched more less-experienced nurses with RN certifications leapfrog her as they realized their own dreams.
Then, one day, Laura saw a familiar face among the latest crop of new RNs. Mark Evans, a nurse she'd trained when he first started as an LPN not so long ago. Curious, Laura asked Mark how he'd become an RN so quickly.
“Achieve Test Prep,” he said with a smile. “Give it a try.”
Laura did. Eighteen months later, she had her RN—and a promotion. The first of many, in fact.
Three secrets to Online RN program success
How had she done it? Why had Achieve worked for her when the other options hadn't? Laura identified three main reasons:
- The program is convenient (but still comprehensive)
Nurses have busy schedules. Nurses who are also parents have even busier schedules. With most schools, that's an issue. Not here. Achieve teaches live online courses across a vast range of days and times. Our classes fit into Laura's schedule, not the other way around.
Versatile as our class schedules are, Achieve doesn't cut corners. All courses are still taught by professional instructors, still cover all the material you need to know, and incorporate the full complement of teaching aids, including PowerPoint presentations, games, quizzes, and live chat.
As a result, Laura never felt like she was getting shortchanged on her education—even though she was attending Microbiology class while sitting at her kitchen table at 9:30 pm, dressed in her pajamas and sipping green tea.
2. The program is personal
Often times, attending an online class feels like being stranded alone on a desert island. You have no help or support, no way to ask questions, no human contact. Many times, your instructor (if you even have one) teaches via a prerecorded video, or a non-interactive, one-way video stream.
Achieve is different. In our virtual classroom, Laura didn't feel like a forgotten, invisible person. She could see and hear everything her instructor—a real human being who had a real interest in seeing her succeed—said and did. Laura also had a voice of her own. When she had a question, she simply clicked an onscreen button (to “raise her hand”) and typed her question into the chat window. Both her instructor and her fellow students could read and respond in real time. It was just like a traditional classroom, except she could attend class from anywhere with an internet connection.
Best of all, Laura's instructors gave their email addresses and phone numbers to the class, enabling Laura to get extra help when she needed it by scheduling additional one-on-one instruction outside of the usual class time. With individual attention like that, no wonder Laura passed all her certification exams on the first try.
3. The program is affordable
This is a big one. Achieve saved Laura money in several different ways. For example:
- Laura learned from professional instructors—often the same instructors traditional nursing schools use—but didn't have to pay the corresponding massive tuition fees.
- Most schools make students purchase expensive text books or study guides. But course materials are always fully included at Achieve. The only thing Laura needed was a computer with internet access.
- Laura was able to use our Credit-by-Exam program to test out of many of her prerequisites, which saved her months of classroom time and thousands of dollars in tuition fees.
- An often-overlooked cost is the time that nurses often have to take off work in order to attend classes or take exams. But Laura was able to complete Achieve's program without missing a single shift or using up even one vacation day .
- Finally, the Achieve program was fast, which enabled Laura to get a promotion to a higher pay grade sooner than other programs would—so not only did she spend less money, she rode the fast track to making more of it.
Once you've done that, why not give Achieve a call and start the process of getting your own BSN or RN? After all, we're always looking for the next great Achieve student success story. It might as well be yours.
*This post has been updated with new information and republished