“Lord Fairfax Community College (LFCC) set me up to succeed,” said 20 year-old John Alger, one of the youngest students ever to graduate with an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Nursing (ADN) from the College. John was homeschooled, taking dual-enrolled classes at LFCC. He finished high school in December 2011 and at 17 started taking classes full-time in the health professions field. He applied to both the Practical Nursing (PN) and ADN programs at LFCC. In the fall of 2012, 25 days after he turned 18, John began his nursing career in the PN curriculum. Here is a timeline of John’s accomplishments:
- January 2013-receives his Certified Nursing Aide (CNA) license (starts working part-time as a privately hired home health caregiver)
- Summer 2013-completes PN program
- October 2013-becomes a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)
- December 2013-begins working at Shenandoah Pediatrics while still attending college full-time
- July 2014-receives his Associate of Arts and Sciences Degree in General Studies
- Summer 2014-begins the LPN Transition Program
- May 2015-graduates with an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Nursing
- June 22, 2015-passed the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Examination (NCLEX-RN) for licensure as a registered nurse
Ever since obtaining his CNA, John has maintained employment while taking classes at LFCC. The hands-on experience is invaluable, not to mention, garnering a paycheck throughout the succession. The nursing programs at LFCC are very popular (and competitive) due to the “stackable” progressions that are offered.
John recently accepted an internship with the Winchester Medical Center in their Critical Care Department and in August 2015, will start the Bachelor of Science in Nursing curriculum at George Mason University. The RN to BSN Pathway at GMU is offered as an on-line platform for students like John who have completed an associate degree and have obtained RN status. He wants to continue his studies thereafter, in pursuit of a Doctorate in Nursing Practice.
Historically, nursing was a profession grossly dominated by women, but that concept is changing. John’s quest is an example of this. The National League for Nursing’s annual Survey of Schools of Nursing for the 2010-2011 academic year indicated that 15% of associate degree students were males. This may still be a minority, but men are increasingly pursuing careers in nursing, attracted by abundant job opportunities and good salaries.
John’s philosophy, “I try everyday to make a positive difference in the world and I will strive to be the best nurse, the best father, and the best man I can be.”
He is one of seven children and resides in Front Royal, VA with his parents John and Sheila Alger, who he credits for directing him in his field of study.