I'll try to help you out since I do know the Denver market. It is one of the most competitive markets in the US since:Believe it or not I live in south Florida, not rural at all, and there is a big job market for RN's with only an ADN down here. Most of the people I know after passing the NCLEX had a job offer only a couple weeks later. Ive looked into nursing but I don't want to stay here in Florida. I want to move to Denver and I have contacted a few nurses/students who are out there and they say it is almost impossible to find a job with just an ADN after school unless you are already enrolled into a BSN program. I don't know why it varies so much but it does. I plan on working as a medic out there and finish my pre reqs and then apply to an ADN program shortly after. Im sure I will learn more about the job market when I actually move there, so things might change. Who knows.
1. Denver metro area overproduces nurses
2. Front range students who can't get in school in CO leave the state for school and return to compete for jobs
3. Tons of people want to move to CO, like you, and move here after school to compete for jobs
Don't come to CO to work as a medic in order to apply to an ADN program to get into a BSN program while trying to get a job. Here is why:
1. In general, the CO ADN programs have less desirable clinical placements which makes you a less competitive applicant. (eg, fewer ICU or ER practicum placements, med/surg may be lower acuity/LTAC/SNF, and your pysch and peds may be outpatient clinics instead of inpatient specialty)
2. CO ADN programs are either competitive or have wait lists lasting years. Do you really want to pay out of state tuition for an associates degree?
3. An ADN new grad in a BSN program is not as competitive of an applicant as a BSN new grad. (However, an experienced ADN in a BSN program is more competitive than any new graduate, except at the VA)
4. Only BSN new grads with <6mo experience AND <1yr post licensure are eligible for most new grad residencies (that is how you typically get hired into a specialty unit like ICU or ER straight out of school instead of starting in a nursing home or med/surg floor). ADNs who earn a BSN are NOT considered BSN new grads.
5. Your nursing school will NOT work around your job (pretty true anywhere). Your job may not be willing to work around your school if you are a new employee.
So if you want to be in Denver, let me propose these plans:
A. Come to Denver once you get accepted to a Denver BSN program (CU and Regis are my recommendations) and pick up per diem medic work.
B. Stay in FL and get your ADN, then get one year of experience while simultaneously starting on your BSN, and then start applying to Denver jobs.