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Let The Memories Begin – My Own Fondest Disney Memory

Thank you for calling Walt Disney World Reservations!  My name is Caroline.  How may I help you?

Yep, my name was Caroline.  For a short time in the 90’s.  Not my stripper name – get your mind out of the gutter.  This was my telephone name as a reservation sales agent for Walt Disney World.

We moved to Orlando in 1993, right after Brighid turned 2.  It was the first time I had ever moved entirely away from my family (except for the summer I spent in the Outer Banks of NC living with my aunt, but she was family!), and I was feeling a bit lost and overwhelmed by my new surroundings.  Living in Orlando was a bit surreal for me.  This was a vacation destination, after all, and here I was, home all day with my two year old, wondering what I should do with myself.  We had annual passes to Walt Disney World, Universal, and Sea World, but at some point in between all the fun of the theme parks, I had to become a productive member of society.  I lounged around as long as I could, went to school for a while, and then decided to look for a job.

On a whim, I headed to Disney Casting. I walked in, not knowing what to expect, and by the end of a couple of hours, I was a Disney World Cast Member!  It was my dream job for my dream company – I was going to be helping people plan a fabulous Walt Disney World vacation!

The first day of training came, and our initial responsibility was to change our names.  Everyone had to have a unique name, so that if a guest had a compliment or a complaint about you, when they called in and said, “Anna is a wonderful cast member!”, there had to be only one Anna out of the hundreds of us at Central Reservations.  I went down the list of names, and not seeing my own, chose the next normal sounding one on the list.  Caroline.

My time as a cast member flew by, and job transfers for Jim prohibited me from staying very long, but I remember every day that I worked there, and I treasure them!  I loved shopping at Company D and having the opportunity to preview new attractions and resorts.  It was a job, no bones about it, but there was a lot to be said about working for the Happiest Place on Earth, and I’ll never regret having the chance to do so.

I’m going to nursing school, I just don’t know where

You know when you ponder things for a really long time, and then other stuff happens, life takes over, and the thing you’ve been debating over for forever gets pushed to the back burner?  And then you finally have time to sit down and make your decision, and the thing you wanted may not be as attainable as it would have been had you kept it in the front of your list of priorities?

Well, I’m finding this frustration with nursing school.

There is a nursing shortage, but there is also a money shortage.  Nursing programs all over the United States are having to cut back on the number of people they are admitting for a variety of reasons – they don’t have hospitals that have enough stuff to supervise clinical hours for students.  They don’t have instructors to teach the classes.  Programs are being eliminated due to funding and other issues.  That means that in some schools, there is a two year waiting list to get into the nursing program.  Or there is no waiting list, but your application will be one of four or more for every open spot they have.  Getting a seat in some of these programs is going to be like hitting the lottery!

I am also finding that even though I’ve taken courses and gotten As in them, most of them are too old.  I’m having to repeat classes that I already took.

And I am finding that all those math and sciences classes I avoided taking in college because you didn’t need them to get a degree in English are all the classes that I need now – so on top of the nursing program I need to get into, I have to tackle at least two semesters worth of terrifying classes.

I am lucky that even though my DH has retired from work early due to a vision disability, we are able to send me back to school full-time. And I have a full-time free tutor at home with nothing else to do 

But where do I go to school?

I ruled out any programs from non-accredited institutions.

Looking for a 4 year accredited school (college or university) for an BSN program that admits to the Nursing program, even if conditionally, is looking like a needle in the hay stack.

Am I missing something? Is every BSN program only taking transfer students, or students who get admitted to the College or University as -or general studies, and then roll the dice and hope you get accepted to those limited number of slots in 2 years?

Or are the $40k/year programs at Illinois Wesleyan University the only types of programs that do direct admission?