Are you thinking about a new career and considering going to nursing school? Nursing is a highly respected career because nurses can impact the lives of individual patients while also promoting health and wellness in the wider community. Because no two work days are exactly the same, there is a lot of potential for personal growth and ongoing learning opportunities.
We have put a short list together from among the numerous reasons why a person should consider getting a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.
Nursing is a person-centered profession, and patients often spend more one-on-one time with nurses than any other medical professional. Nurses are present for many vulnerable and intimate parts of the patient’s healing process, along with meaningful moments such as the birth of a new baby or the final days of a hospice patient’s life. Nurses truly make a difference in their patients’ lives, often saving patients by making medical interventions or noticing something that a doctor needs to be informed of. It’s not uncommon for family members of patients to express gratitude toward nurses, for caring for their loved one and keeping that person comfortable.
These are some of the reasons why nurses are so highly respected. They make an incredible impact on individual lives, which, in turn, positively affects the wider community.
Working a 12-hour shift can sound exhausting, until you factor in that a nurse only needs to work three of those shifts each week and still be full-time. For many nurses, having four days off each week is a pretty good deal. Nurses also find that it isn’t too difficult to trade shifts with co-workers if plans come up in the middle of the work schedule.
There are other ways that nursing affords great job flexibility. Because nurses are in such high demand across the country, it is relatively easy to switch jobs if your family needs to relocate or you want to experience life in a different region or state. The Nursing Licensure Compact means that a nurse can get one license and practice in 34 other states, as long as the original license is obtained in one of the participating states.
One of the greatest benefits of getting an education in nursing is that you will acquire a broad enough skill set to work in different kinds of settings and clinical institutions. Travel nursing is attractive for those who want to experience new places and meet others from very different walks of life without having to completely relocate for the long term.
Nursing is a stable industry to work in and nurses are in high demand. Because just about every department and unit in hospitals and other clinical settings cannot function without nurses, the need for them will always be there. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for registered nurses is currently 12 percent, which is considered much faster than the average rate for all occupations. The job outlook for advanced practice nurses is even higher, with a growth of 26 percent expected over the next 10 years.
Nursing isn’t just one of the most secure fields to go into—it is also one of the best paying careers. Registered nurses earned a median salary of $71,730 in 2018. Advanced practice nurses earned almost $114,000 in the same year. A person can earn overtime pay by working on holidays or picking up extra shifts.
Compared to other careers, nursing is one in which almost all positions come with incredible employment benefits. The comprehensive benefits packages almost always come with medical insurance, retirement, paid time off and Health Care Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs).
Many of those certifications and advanced degrees can be obtained through online nursing school, allowing a person to go into teaching, consultant work, research, administration or to become an advanced nurse practitioner.
Diverse Opportunities and Career Mobility
Nurses can steer their career into many different directions. Not only is there a diverse and wide range of specialties, advanced degrees and certifications, but there are numerous ways of practicing nursing beyond the clinical floor. If a person enjoys the academic side of the profession, there are options like being a clinical nurse educator, conducting research or teaching for an online nursing school or in a traditional setting. School nurses and public health nurses get to interact directly with the community, and many of them find this to be very rewarding. Some of the lesser known, non-traditional nursing careers include forensic nursing, working within correctional institutions or helping with criminal investigations. If a person is motivated to acquire advanced skills, there is also a need for specialists like nurse anesthetists, nurse practitioners and certified nurse midwives.
Nurses can work in a variety of patient populations, from labor and delivery to geriatric nursing among elderly patients. Those who enjoy working with children can choose pediatrics, ranging from preventative to acute care.
When Considering a Bachelor of Science in Nursing
It’s easy to understand why nurses have such a high level of job satisfaction. Nursing provides financial security while delivering emotional rewards, as nurses come to know that they are making a real difference in the lives of their patients. For those who are easily bored by routine, nursing is the kind of field that can provide new and interesting challenges. Ultimately, it’s rewarding to know that what you do on a daily basis positively and directly impacts other lives.
If you are considering a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, you must take a moment to make your personalized list of the best colleges for nursing school. What qualities does your ideal program have—on-campus clinicals, an abundant alumni network, groundbreaking research? Whether it’s a full-time program at a traditional 4-year college, a three-year nursing program or a program that offers flexibiliy with your schedule, you must have a clear picture of where you are currently in life and what earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing means to you. Talk to the program’s admission representatives and get in contact with current students who will offer clarity about the university and nursing program that will help you determine your best program fit.