There are numerous reasons to go back to school for nursing.
For instance, nurses have excellent earning potential, with some disciplines making six-figure incomes.
There is also plenty of career diversity and healthcare fields in nursing.
Registered nurses can pursue over 100 career specializations in direct care and other disciples.
It includes bedside care, research, science, education, legal consulting, and entrepreneurship.
Finally, nurses have excellent job security and find their work extremely rewarding.
This article covers the numerous reasons to go back to school for nursing.
It also provides information on a nurse’s career outlook and advancement opportunities.
1. Increased Earning Potential
Registered nurses earn higher than average incomes due to their high demand, specialization, and societal contributions.
These medical professionals work in the healthcare domain.
As a result, they experience excellent job security because people will always need healthcare services.
Understaffed facilities and busy cities provide nurses with financial incentives, perks, and bonuses to keep or hire talented staff.
Sometimes hospitals hire travel nurses at a premium rate to fill vacant nursing positions.
They also offer extras like rental cars and housing, a travel stipend, and other perks to entice them to work at the hospital.
It provides nurses with flexible lifestyles to earn excellent incomes and travels to new destinations!
At the high end, registered nurses earn six figures, with some nurses making up to 300k annually!
2. Career Diversity and Specialization
As previously mentioned, nursing is a diverse occupation.
It offers registered nurses over one hundred unique specializations and disciplines.
As a result, most nurses can find carers that accommodate their skills and interests.
Registered nurses can pursue direct care positions to help patients needing medical care.
For instance, they work at hospitals, clinics, physician offices, community health centers, emergency departments, and nursing homes.
They can also choose non-bedside careers like legal consulting, research, entrepreneurship, mental health, forensics, and education.
Finally, people who obtain the highest level of nursing go back to school to become advanced practice registered nurses.
At this level, these specialists have the broadest scope of practice.
Some APRNs independently operate clinics, prescribe medications, and act as primary care providers.
Others pursue careers as midwives or clinical nurse specialists or becomenurse anesthetists.
Notably, nurse anesthetists earn one of the highest incomes in the United States, with some making above 200k annually.
There are countless opportunities for registered nurses to make a living, improve healthcare and contribute to society.
Most importantly, a registered nurse’s skills are transferable to many different careers.
It enables them to switch professions if they no longer enjoy their current vocation or need a career change.
3. Personal Growth and Networking
Because nurses continually develop their education and expertise, they’re constantly growing.
Continuous growth ensures busy nurses rarely get bored or feel complacent.
As a result, it’s an excellent career for those worried about boring jobs that quickly feel dull once they learn the basics.
There are always opportunities to work in different departments, learn new skills, and network with diverse staff.
You can work in general nursing for one year and then transfer to an emergency department or pediatric unit.
You can also shift from hospital work to a physician’s office or change disciplines and become a legal consultant.
Autonomous individuals may become travel nurses, independent nurse contractors, or entrepreneurs.
The opportunities are limitless, and new nursing careers develop every year!
4. Excellent Job Security and Stability
In addition to excellent career diversity, nursing offers great job security and stability.
Numerous healthcare facilities require highly talented staff to manage the nursing shortage.
As a result, those who provide excellent care can always find work in direct or non-traditional nursing roles.
The travel nursing industry offers a temporary solution to the nursing shortage.
However, the deficit will likely remain with an aging population, education challenges, and retiring healthcare workers.
This shortage does put a strain on the economy and healthcare system.
However, it creates excellent opportunities for nurses to earn exceptional wages and choose desirable work.
5. Rewarding Work and Societal Impact
Many nurses start their careers due to the rewarding feeling of helping those in need.
Registered nurses are uniquely positioned to improve the lives of the people they serve through various means.
For instance, they help patients through education, direct medical care, and advocacy.
They also use non-direct approaches like research, science, medical sales, technology, and academia to assist patients, healthcare workers, and the medical system.
Finally, registered nurses pursue careers in government, law, and education.
It enables them to develop better healthcare policies, practices, and procedures.
Should I go Back to School to Become a Nurse?
Some people wonder whether they should return to nursing school after 30 or 40.
It depends on whether they are passionate about healthcare and helping others.
As previously mentioned, many unique nursing disciplines satisfy individuals with different interests and preferences.
It’s never too late to change careers and become a registered nurse.
However, it would be best if you desired the healthcare profession and did not seek this job purely for the money.
It would help if you also determined the nursing specialization you want to pursue.
Not everyone enjoys bedside care; even those who do can experience nurse burnout in busy healthcare facilities.
Registered nurses are highly organized, team-oriented, timely, and emotionally robust due to the nature of the work.
As a result, nursing is just as much a mindset as physical labor.
For those interested in nursing but unsure whether to become a registered nurse starting a career as a CNA or LPN is ideal.
It enables you to start working more quickly than those pursuing nursing school.
That way, you can decide whether you enjoy the field without spending years in education and paying for nursing school.
You’ll also have the opportunity to continue work and receive an income if you return to school to become a registered nurse.
3 Things to Weigh Before Returning to School
Going back to school to become a nurse is extremely rewarding, and the benefits are highly enticing.
However, there are some challenges you need to consider before leaping.
It includes understanding the time needed to complete nursing school and determining the money it will cost.
You must also know your reason for returning to school to ensure it’s the right career.
Nursing school requires two to four years to complete depending on whether you’re pursuing an ADN or BSN degree.
You must also complete prerequisite courses to gain admittance into the nursing program.
However, there are accelerator programs for LPNs and those with a BSN in other disciplines.
It enables students to complete the nursing program faster due to their previous education.
Nevertheless, you must have the strength and fortitude to spend several years in school studying to become a nurse.
Fortunately, online programs enable students to work while earning their nursing degrees.
It’s great for those who need to earn an income but want to enter the healthcare profession eventually.
Money is another important factor you need to consider when deciding to return to school to become a nurse.
It’s not uncommon for nursing students to spend $40,000 to over $100,000 to obtain their nursing degree.
It primarily depends on the nursing program/university, full-time/part-time status, and loan fees.
That said, nurses earn excellent incomes with an average annual salary of over ,000.
Even more, nurses in high-paying states in occupations with excellent earning potential make over six figures yearly.
It enables them to pay back student loans more comfortably.
Nevertheless, it’s essential to ensure it’s a suitable carer before spending money and time pursuing a nursing education.
Every nurse has a reason for joining the healthcare profession.
Many healthcare workers joined nursing to help others lead healthier, happier lives.
You must understand why you’re joining the nursing profession.
Those who work in this discipline are intensely passionate, and the experiences they face are incredibly emotional.
People who join nursing make a difference in people alive from various positions.
Most nurses work in direct care helping patients manage their conditions and educating the community.
However, some specialists perform at a government or academic level, affecting policies and healthcare procedures.
There are also research, law, technology, sales, software services, and medical equipment/clothing production nurses.
As a result, understanding your reason for entering nursing will help center your education and carve a viable career route.
Being a nurse isn’t about money and prestige. It’s about helping others who need healthcare services, medical aid, and information.
The nursing industry is continuously developing yearly with no signs of slowing down.
New careers expand the role of nursing from direct care to technology advancement and healthcare systems.
As nurse entrepreneurs, advocates, and educators develop novel careers, opportunities will continually grow.
In addition, explorations into research, medicine, pharmacology, and technology provide new professions for registered nurses.
Essentially, there are opportunities for nurses to join or create careers that involve healthcare services.
According to BLS.gov, the growth rate for nursing positions over the next decade is approximately 9%.
However, the nursing shortage creates a high demand and steady supply of jobs for qualified registered nurses.