A Growing Demand for Nurses

  As you’ve probably heard, the American job market has been somewhat unstable since the recession of 2008. Unemployment rates have improved slightly, but even the White House has admitted that the new Affordable Care Act will leave many Americans without jobs. This news might make any high school or college student nervous.   So, how can you improve your own job prospects? The best solution is to choose a career that is in high demand. However, no one should choose a career solely on that basis; a career must also match your interests and passions.   Nursing tops the list of careers that are in high demand right now. The Bureau of Labor Statistics is projecting over one million job openings for nurses within the next decade. This demand comes from current nurses retiring and the growing number of elderly people in need of healthcare. So, if you love biology, are interested in healthcare, and want to make a difference in the lives of others, then becoming a Registered Nurse (RN) might be the right fit career for you!   As a nurse you will need to have patience and be able to show compassion. You must also be able to prioritize tasks and work at a fast pace. Full-time nurses usually work three 12-hour shifts per week, which has its pros and cons. Most nurses enjoy their jobs, but they may have to deal with difficult patients, and difficult cases when patients cannot be cured.   While some nurses start with an associate degree, CAA suggests earning a bachelor’s degree in nursing (BSN). Why? According to an article in The New York Times (Richard Pérez-Peña, 2012) hundreds of hospitals now require their nurses to have a BSN and many more prefer it. A bachelor’s degree also opens doors in specialty areas such as pediatrics, ICU, or the emergency room, which pay better. The average pay for a registered nurse with a BSN is about $65,000 per year, which is about $11,000 more than nurses with only an associate degree.   And nurses with a master’s degree in nursing (MSN) make even more per year and demand for them is growing as well.  Nurse practitioners, midwives, and supervisors make an average of $89,000 per year and all require an MSN.  According to an article in Forbes, as the healthcare system changes and more people request medical services, there will be a shortage of doctors.  The Affordable Care Act will create a new system for primary care that will use nurse practitioners and physician assistants to fill in that gap. According to whitehouse.gov, the government will support 600 nurse practitioners by 2015 with training and financial assistance.   So what type of nursing makes the most? Nurse anesthetists are the highest-paid nurses, making around $148,000 per year. If you are interested in an advanced degree in nursing, some colleges offer a BSN to DNP (Doctor of Nursing Practice), which will save you time if you want to skip the master’s level degree and move straight toward a doctorate.   CAA Coaches recommend that all students research their career choices fully. As always, CAA clients are welcome to contact us with any career questions.