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With a Bachelor's Degree in Nursing, You'll Do Well by Doing Good
Nursing is a critically important, rapidly growing profession, full of advancement opportunities. The large generation of baby boomers is aging and people are living longer, so the demand for healthcare is growing astronomically. As a nurse, you'll have an in-demand career and may even perform procedures that used to be reserved solely for physicians. You can also enjoy the benefits of a rewarding career, knowing you are helping others all day long.
It takes one year to become a licensed practical nurse (LPN) with an associate's degree and four years to become a registered nurse (RN) with a bachelor's degree in nursing (BSN). If you're interested in nursing administration, clinical research, or college-level teaching, a BSN is a necessity. And to specialize as a particular kind of nurse--for instance, as a nurse anesthetist or nurse midwife--you'll need graduate studies. Because the demand for nurses with a bachelor's degree is greater than the supply, many states even help pay for your nursing degree in exchange for your promise to work in the state for a number of years.
Nursing studies leading to a BSN include courses in the human body, such as anatomy and physiology, other science courses, such as microbiology and chemistry, courses in nutrition and psychology, and training in nursing itself. All nursing degrees require clinical experience in a hospital, clinic, nursing home, or public health department.
Nurse salaries vary greatly by level, specialty, state, and employer, but according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual earnings of RNs in 2008 were $62,450, and the highest-paid 10 percent of RNs earned more than $92,240. Earning a bachelor's or master's degree in nursing can significantly increase your earning potential.
About the Author
Jane Greer is a freelance writer and editor and is also brave enough to teach English grammar at a community college.
- M.S. in Nursing with an Emphasis in Leadership in Health Care Systems (Bridge)
- Doctor of Nursing Practice
- Master of Science in Nursing - Nursing Administration
- Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN completion)