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Adult Students Pursue Nursing as a New Career

By Catherine Groux
Posted May 04, 2012 02:12 PM

Today, many adults are going back to school to pursue a nursing career.
Today, many adults are going back to school to pursue a nursing career.
In light of the current economy, the stereotype of the 18- to 22-year-old associate's and bachelor's degree seeker is drastically changing. Today, about 40% of American college students, or almost 6 million individuals, are 25 years of age or older, according to the U.S. Department of Education.

While these adults go back to school to study a wide range of subjects, many of them are working toward a new career in nursing. At Illinois' Heartland Community College, for example, none of the 40 students who will graduate from the nursing program this month are traditional students, the Daily Herald reports.

"I was pretty surprised when I started," said nursing student John Cook, 47. "There was virtually no one right out of high school. I remember thinking that I'd be the oldest one in there by far, and that's not the case. It's a huge cross-section of people with bachelor's degrees in other fields, including a lot of moms."

At the end of the month, students like Cook will earn an Associate's degree in Nursing, and then either move on to earn a bachelor's degree or take the registered nurse licensing exam and enter the workforce.

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