What Can You Do With A Nursing Degree?

registered nurse (RN)
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According to the Princeton Review, nursing is the third most popular college major students  choose to study. Nursing is the practice of caring for individuals who are sick or disabled and their communities. If you have the passion to help others, then you should consider a career as a nurse. There are many job opportunities across the globe for people with nursing degrees. Here, you will find a sample of where nurses can practice, higher education facilities with top-notch nursing programs, and careers available to people who have studied nursing.

Where can a Nurse Work?

Contrary to popular belief, nurses can work other places besides a doctor’s office or hospital. Once you obtain your nursing degree and become a registered nurse, you may find that you qualify for nursing jobs in multiple business areas including but not limited to the following:

Cruise ships

Retirement homes

Military bases

Hospice

Schools

Nurses are needed in order to ensure the health and safety of people of all ages in public places and shared communities.

How do You Get a Degree in Nursing?

If you feel driven to assist in the care of others, then consider attending one of the following schools located in this section. All schools described here can be found on the Top 30 Cutting Edge Nursing Schools list. Never apply to just one school, however. Always submit applications to at least three colleges, especially when pursuing a degree in nursing.

The University of Colorado at Denver provides students with the opportunity to receive a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing, and it also offers a special degree program for registered nurses (RNs) to earn a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing, as well. Students take courses in everything from Fundamentals of Nursing to Nursing Care of Childbearing Families to Mental Health Nursing, choosing courses that mold their educational experiences to fit the particular field of nursing they decide to explore.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill offers students the opportunity to earn a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing as well as a Master of Science Degree in Nursing. Students can also earn a doctoral degree, as well. In 1955, the university was the first school in the state to offer a masters degree in nursing. Its School of Nursing is one of the top accredited nursing schools in America and has clinical partnerships with some of the greatest health care organizations throughout the country.

The School of Nursing at the University of Rochester in Rochester, NY, offers RN to BS programs in nursing as well as the chance for students to earn a masters degree in nursing, and doctoral degrees for nurse practitioners in specialties like psychiatric and mental health, family care, and acute care. Classes for undergraduates can range from Population Health to Contexts of Health Care: Finance and Regulatory Environments. Many courses are both in-class and online, only meeting in class a handful of times per term. In addition to the classroom and online experiences, students are required to complete two field study observations while obtaining their bachelors degree in nursing.

What are Some Careers in Nursing?

The field of nursing is constantly expanding. Once you earn your nursing degree and obtain your certification, you will qualify for many career options. Just a few of them are listed below.

Entry Level Nursing Careers

With an associates degree or bachelors degree in nursing, you can earn a comfortable living while doing what you love. Some career options available are described here.

Certified Nurse Assistant

In order to become a certified nurse assistant (CRN), all you need is proof of experience from working in a health care facility for a set time frame. A college degree is not required for this entry level position, because the position is meant to provide you with insight as to what registered nurses (RNs) do for a living in order to improve your learning experience while you are in the process of earning your associates degree or bachelors degree in nursing. A CRN does work for a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) or RN, helping the nurse with his/her daily responsibilities. CRNs often observe nurse interactions with patients and have the dirty job of emptying catheter bags and helping patients readjust themselves so as not to develop bedsores if they are bedridden. A CRN needs patience and good communication skills.

CRNs make around $16,000 to 28,000. It is not a permanent position. This is a position meant to prepare you for further education and certification in the nursing field.

Registered Nurse

associates degree in nursing
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A registered nurse (RN) is heavily involved in working with patients on a daily basis. Registered nurses are responsible for creating treatment plans for patients, and they can work in anywhere from pediatrics to neurology. Some serve a rather diverse patient base, whereas other RNs specialize in specific fields (i.e., neurology). There are plenty of fields to choose from, so you are not limited to one specific registered nurse position upon earning your bachelors degree in nursing. Registered nurses are passionate about their job and dedicated to their patients. They have excellent written and verbal communication skills as well as a strong attention to detail and analysis.

Registered nurses can make anywhere from $43,000 to over $96,000 annually, depending on what specific field they work in and how experienced they are.

Advanced Careers in Nursing

After gaining an excessive amount of experience and/or earning a masters degree or even a doctoral degree in nursing or a related field, many more career paths will open up to you. Your choices will expand, as will your qualified salary.

Flight Nurse

A flight nurse, also known as a transport nurse, cares for patients who have been injured and are being transported to a medical facility. They are essentially the go-between nurses. Flight nurses serve in ambulances, helicopters, and often serve on military bases as well. Injuries may be sport-related, military-related, or caused by purely reckless behavior. Flight nurses have patience and the ability to pay close attention to detail.

Flight nurses can make around $48,000 a year.

Rehabilitation Nurse

A rehabilitation nurse works with patients who are recovering from serious injuries or diseases. Duties include supporting and motivating patients with their everyday activities, working closely with patients and in some cases the families of patients in addition to other health care providers to make sure that patients receive proper care necessary for recovery. Rehabilitation nurses have excellent communication, management, and leadership skills. They are also registered nurses.

Rehabilitation nurses can earn around $56,000 annually.

Midwife

Midwives provide various health care services specifically for women throughout their lives, including throughout the trimesters of pregnancy. They provide gynecological care and help women make wise decisions on birth control and pregnancy options. They also assist women during the birthing process and after the baby is born. Upon earning your bachelors degree and certification in nursing, you can go on to study midwifery in graduate school in order to become a certified midwife. Midwives are compassionate and caring with excellent communication and analysis skills.

A midwife can earn around $90,000 annually.

What Kinds of Places Hire People with Nursing Degrees?

Much of the world of nursing is contained in hospitals and health care facilities throughout the world, but it is also possible, as noted above, for people with nursing degrees to get jobs on cruise ships, in schools, and other highly populated locations. Some specific companies that hire people with nursing degrees are listed below.

Hospice of St. Francis – established in 1977 and located in Titusville, FL; hires positions for registered nurse case managers, certified nurse assistants, licensed practical nurses, etc.

Ware Visiting Nurses Service – located throughout the state of GA, one office in SC; services provided include medicare, speech therapy, workmen’s compensation, nursing, home health care, etc.; hires positions for registered nurses, certified nurse assistants, and other health care professionals

Methodist College Unity Point Health – located in Peoria, IL; hires nurse educators with practice in clinical nursing, etc.

Maximus – locations across the globe; hires positions for school nurses

Kindred Healthcare – founded in 1985 in Louisville, KY, with multiple locations; positions available in nursing centers, rehabilitation centers, assisted living programs, etc.

A degree in nursing is perfect for people with the passion to promote healthy living and help individuals reach their health goals. Always remember to apply to multiple nursing colleges. The field of nursing is constantly growing with no predicted shortage of jobs over the next few years, so consider a career in nursing.

Author: Rose Boettinger

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  • mneeley

    Great post! I was fortunate enough to finish nursing school and work in the ER in my early days and switched over to travel nursing, which is an awesome career choice as well.

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