Nursing remains one of the steadiest career choices in America today. There are now more than 2.7 million registered nurses in the United States, yet the profession is one of ten that is expected to grow the most within the next decade.
Many Americans are looking for a career that gives them a sense of accomplishment and that will help them find and maintain gainful employment and personal success. Nursing is one such career choice.
To succeed as a nurse, you must enjoy helping people. Being a nurse requires a scientific mind and technological skill. Nurses are independent, licensed professionals who play key roles in modern healthcare decisions.
A flexible career choice
Perhaps one of the reasons nursing remains such a popular career choice is the flexibility it offers. Nurses have the ability to work in many types of facilities anywhere in the world. Therefore, opportunities abound.
For a traditional career, nursing is extremely flexible. You can be a man or a woman. And you can work in an urban, suburban or rural setting. For these reasons, nursing has become the career of choice among high school graduates. Nursing careers are attractive to adults who are re-entering the workforce or who are hoping to make a mid-life career change.
Choose to be challenged
Most registered nurses work in hospitals, on the front lines of the medical profession. This offers you a number of challenging opportunities for success within a given specialty. You might find yourself working as a medical/surgical nurse caring for a patient during an operation. Perhaps you will become an ER nurse, responding to the needs of a trauma patient. Or how about work as an obstetrics nurse, assisting a first-time mother with childbirth.
The point is, with a nursing career, you are opening many doors to the future and giving yourself a great chance for personal happiness and professional success.
A salary that matches your skills
As you can see, nursing is a rewarding career in terms of the contribution nurses make to society and the medical profession. It is important to note that nursing is also a rewarding career from a financial perspective.
Nurses' salaries in the United States are better than ever. The average salary of nurses in this country has grown steadily over the past two decades and continues to rise. Today, a full-time registered nurse earns an average annual salary of $46,800. That number is expected to grow steadily through the next decade and beyond.
We need nurses; the medical profession wants you!
Nursing is a popular career, but it is also a career that remains very much in demand today. There are three basic reasons why the supply of nurses far outweighs the current number of trained personnel.
First of all, America's largest generation is getting older. The baby boomers' need for healthcare professionals is at an all-time high, but it will only get higher as this generation reaches old age.
Secondly, nurses are retiring in greater numbers than ever before, leaving large numbers of jobs unfilled and leaving great opportunities with trained nurses.
Finally, and perhaps most unexpectedly, is the shift away from physician care in favor of nursing care. How many of your recent visits to the doctor included large amounts of face time with a physician? The reality is that doctors are spending less and less time with patients, relying on nurses to handle most procedures.
Regardless of the reasons, the nursing profession needs you! If you want a steady and rewarding career, all you need to do is find a school that offers quality training in nursing. You're in luck there, too. The number of nursing programs available are as endless as the demand for trained nurses.
Becoming a registered nurse
You need to complete a nursing education program in order to find work as a nurse in the medical profession. There are a number of training schools that offer the training you need to become a nurse. These programs will give you the skills and experience you need to pass the RN licensure exam. Once you have earned your Associate Degree, it is often possible to later obtain a Bachelor's Degree in nursing with financial assistance from your employer.
Choosing a nursing school
Just as your decision to become a nurse offers you many opportunities for success, it also gives you a number of options when it comes to selecting a nursing school. The decision is yours but there are a number of important factors to consider. The first, of course, is location. Is the nursing school conveniently located so that you can attend class and balance your professional and personal life?
It's also important to check the facilities. Does the nursing school use cutting-edge technology? Will you be learning to use the most state-of-the-art techniques? Also, is the nursing school a comfortable place to learn?
Don't forget to ask if the nursing school you want to attend is accredited. This can affect your future chances for success. If your school is accredited, you have a much better chance of earning a license, and of being admitted to a four-year school or graduate program later in your nursing career.
Examine the programs of study as well. Are the latest practices and techniques part of the curriculum. Are there enough teachers to give you the individual attention you need to succeed?
Selecting a nursing school is perhaps the most key decision you will make on your way to your rewarding new career in nursing. There are many schools to choose from, and we recommend that you start your search today!
Upgrading yourself from RN to BSN: Worth the effort
Once you have gained the technical skills and state licensure that you need to work as a registered nurse or RN, you might soon find yourself wondering if you should take your education, and your career, to a higher level. By this we mean, should you go back to school for a Bachelor's Degree in nursing or BSN? We think the answer is clear.
Working as an RN is great work if you can find it, but the likelihood of finding a job is proportional to your education -- the more you know, the more likely you to find a position and a nice salary to go along with it.
Among the biggest driving forces behind the RN to BSN movement is the desire to live a better life. Over time, most registered nurses realize that advancement in position and salary would both come with an advanced education.
Key decisions to make along the way
If you are considering earning your Bachelor's Degree in Nursing or BSN, there are a number of factors we recommend you consider. First, examine your course options. Once you have a steady career as an RN, you will find it increasingly difficult to find time for more training. Not to mention the trouble you will have with giving up your personal and family time. Why not see if the school you are considering offers online courses? It is so much more convenient to learn from the comfort of your home. Start there.
Next, find out if the school offers special services to help you balance your professional and personal life. For instance, perhaps on-campus day-care is an option. Or distance learning programs that don't require you to become a regular presence on campus. Be realistic about what you can and cannot do.
Finally, find out how long the BSN degree will take to earn, then determine how many courses you can take in a single semester. That will help you plan your time and manage it accordingly.
Open new doors to future success
Statistically speaking, earning a Bachelor's Degree in Nursing makes you more likely to find the position and the salary you seek within the nursing profession.
A final reason to consider earning your BSN can be found in a recent opinion poll that found 76 percent of Americans think that nurses should have a four-year college education.
Once you earn a BSN in nursing, the sky is the limit for you and your career.
Not sure what types of careers would be a good fit for you? Try this career assessment test to help determine what professional fields match your personality and skills.