What Can You Do with a Nursing Degree?

Millions of people have pursued careers in the medical field. It is undoubtedly one of the best ways to give back to your community, and there are many different ways in which to do it. Many people choose a career in nursing as a way to quickly move into the medical profession. There is much studying and work involved in becoming a nurse, but the risk is worth the reward. Being a nurse opens up the doors to a variety of different career choices. Which one is right for you? We’ll look at a few of the many professions you can consider pursuing with a nursing degree in hand.

Doctor’s Office Nurse

A doctor’s office nurse, or physician’s nurse, is probably the most common form of nurse you have interacted with in day-to-day life. These individuals work alongside physicians in private practices and tend to have a more regular work schedule than nurses who work in hospitals or elsewhere. Many nurses have entered this profession after just two to four years of schooling. It is now easier than ever to study and prepare for you nursing degree, thanks to online courses such as those offered by Bradley University.

School Nurse

Perhaps one of the most rewarding professions you can pursue with a Master of Science in Nursing is a school nurse. Many schools are understaffed when it comes to those willing to serve in this capacity, so there is plenty of growth in the job market. As a school nurse you will have much more time than the average nurse due to the nature of the school year. This is a fantastic benefit for nurses with school-age children.

Diabetes Nurse

There is such an increase in diabetes in the country today that an entire specialized form of nursing is developing around it. A diabetes nurse specializes in treatments and diabetes planning for those affected by the disease. These nurses may work out of a diabetic clinic or may perform house calls, depending on the nature of the patients. The primary role for diabetes nurses is to manage the conditions of those who are facing diabetes, and to provide plans that help mitigate the effects of the illness.

Occupational Health Nurse

Occupational health nurses focus on providing health-oriented solutions to large numbers of people within a medical setting. This job is most commonly found in hospitals and very large businesses. The role for the nurse is to ensure that working conditions and outcomes are healthy and sound for employees, with the goal being to maintain mental, emotional and physical well-being. This role is commonly used to lower overall operating and healthcare costs for larger companies.

These four nursing occupations are just a sample of the many dozens of different professions that a nursing degree can open up to you. Whether you intend to pursue an associate degree or a Master of Science in Nursing, there are many different careers waiting for you in a field that is growing by leaps and bounds every year.

9 Things Nurses Do — And Why You Should Appreciate Them


Nursing is often an under-appreciated profession. While nurses spend more time on average caring for their patients than doctors, they often take home significantly less pay. About 89 percent of nurses feel ineffective in their work due to indifferent or argumentative physicians and staff, and most nurses rarely have enough free time to eat healthy meals or sleep soundly more than three nights a week.

Despite all this, nursing remains one of the most attractive careers for people looking to contribute meaningfully to society. Nurses are amazing workers who provide infinite amounts of care to their patients and society in general. To prove the point, here are nine common activities you didn’t know nurses do.

1. Collect Patient Histories

Whenever you visit a doctor’s office or hospital, before you are admitted and taken to an exam room, you usually fill out a few forms inquiring about your recent health. Though the doctors may glance at this information for a quick background, most of your history goes straight into the minds of the careful and caring nurses.

2. Perform Physical Exams

In the past, the physical exam was strictly the realm of doctors. Because it requires the careful measurement of dozens of vital signs — including blood pressure, heart rate, temperature, and respiration rate — the physical exam was one of only a handful of methods doctors could use to diagnose disorders. Today, with technology like blood work and scanning, the physical exam is no longer held in high esteem, and it has been relegated to the duty of nurses. Read the rest of this entry »

Jobs with the Highest Depression Rates

It doesn’t matter if you’re 10, 21 or 55; it’s hard to decide what career path you want to take. Personally, I have changed my mind at least a dozen times. The only things that consistently keep me happy are my family and my writing. Speaking of being happy with your job, did you know that some careers are more likely to produce depressed workers? Although it’s true, that doesn’t mean I’m discouraging anyone from pursuing these higher-than-normal depression-causing careers. Hundreds of factors can contribute to the cause of depression, so it’s important not to choose your career based off this list. However, it’s some interesting trivia and may prove helpful for those of you who are already susceptible to the blues.

Child Care and Nursing Home Workers Almost 11 percent of the nursing home and child care workforce report having symptoms of depression. This particular field can be very rewarding, but it’s important to remember that the caregivers often do tremendous amounts of work for people that are unable- or in some cases, unwilling- to provide praise and thanks. For many people, the stress of this job piles up over the years.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Top 10 Nursing Schools in the US

nursesSo you’ve decided you want to go into the medical field, but you don’t necessarily want to be a doctor. It’s a lot of school, crazy hours, and the possibility of being sued for medical malpractice every day. Talk about stress.

Maybe you should go to nursing school. Registered nurses make close to $50,000 a year. Nurses also interact more regularly with patients, have set hours, and can specialize in any field they want.

If you are considering going to nursing school, you want to go to the best school possible, right? Here’s US News’ list of the top 10 nursing schools in the country.

Read the rest of this entry »

Consider a Nursing Career in Recessionary Times

nursesWith near daily news of layoffs and an economy in the tank, it can be tough to choose a career path that will have a job waiting for you when you graduate. To that, consider nursing.

Nursing can be a challenging job with long hours and stressful situations, and it’s not for the faint of heart (or those who faint at the sight of blood). In fact 20% of nurses quit within their first year. But these facts could make the field perfect for you for several reasons.

First, there is a national shortage of nurses and an ever-growing demand. Read the rest of this entry »

Walden University Expands Degree Offerings

cap and gownStudents of online school Walden University now have three more options when it comes to choosing a degree program. The first is a new Bachelor’s degree in nursing, being offered for nurses who already have a hospital diploma or an Associate’s degree in nursing.

The second is a Bachelor’s degree in instructional design and technology. It is designed for students seeking a career as a curriculum designer, a course editor, an instructional coordinator, or even for someone interested in desktop publishing. With this degree you will be able to evaluate your organization’s training needs and then design a solution for them. Areas of concentration are three-fold: general, business and organizational change and human factors, and interface design. Read the rest of this entry »

Associate Degrees Can Offer a Great Return on Your Investment

Associate degrees can be much more valuable than many people realize!  According to Yahoo! Education, here are the five college degrees that offer the best financial return–that is, the highest financial rewards for the least amount of money.  Note that #4 and #5 on the list are associate degrees.

  1. Masters of Business Administration (MBA)
  2. Bachelor’s of Science in Engineering
  3. Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing
  4. Associate Degree in Paralegal Studies
  5. Associate of Applied Science in Information Technology

nurseYou’re probably not surprised by the MBA, but did you know that associate degrees in paralegal studies and IT can really pay off–especially considering how little you’ll pay to earn these degrees?  Experienced professionals with these two year degrees average over $60,000 a year, and can potentially earn quite a bit more.  This is great news for students with these interests who aren’t crazy about the thought of going to school for years, and who want to get into the workplace now.  Two year degrees can really pay off.

So why isn’t the two year degree in nursing on the list?  If you’re interested in nursing, keep in mind that the four year nursing degree–which is #3 on this list–has really become the standard in the nursing field.  Two year degrees haven’t lost all their value, though– especially because you can get an associates degree in nursing, work for awhile, and then go back to finish a four year degree.

Of course, some associate degrees are more valuable than others, so if you’re interested in or attending a community college, talk to an advisor about the financial prospects of majors that interest you.  But don’t think that a four year degree is absolutely necessary to make yourself valuable in the marketplace.

How to begin your Nursing Career

There are certain types of people that are just naturally caregivers. These people are generally compassionate, motivating and kindhearted. Nursing is a popular career option for these types of people. For those thinking of becoming a nurse the research process can be quite overwhelming.

Bachelors and Associates Nursing Education
The first step to starting a nursing career starts with the preliminary research. Becoming a nurse requires an advanced education. Although you do not need a college degree to become a nurse, those who have a nursing degree will make more money and have more career options in the future.

There are many options to obtaining a nursing degree. The most common is a Bachelor of Science Nursing which is a 4 year degree at a traditional university. Usually a Bachelor of Science Nursing degree is required for admission to a Masters of Nursing program. By completing a college degree individuals will become a Registered Nurse and will have many career paths they could take. Individuals choosing not to become RN’s can also obtain an Associates Degree from a community college and work taking care of the sick, injured or elderly in special needs programs. Make sure the nursing program is accredited with The National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission and Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education before enrolling.

Advanced Nursing Education
Licensed Practical Nurses care for the sick, injured and disabled under the direct supervision of physicians and registered nurses. An LPN is responsible for taking basic care, taking vital signs, monitoring equipment and changing dressings. Getting an LPN degree usually takes 1 year and can be found at vocational schools. Some universities offer accelerated programs for students who already have some other degree but wish to pursue nursing. These programs usually last 1.5-2 years in length. There are many advanced degrees as well such as Degree Completion Programs for RNs, Master, Doctoral and Post-Doctoral Programs. Getting a degree is the first step in a meaningful nursing career.

Once you have a degree in nursing there are many different certification programs available to further ones career. Some Registered Nurses are required to complete certification classes on a regular basis to show competence of their job skills. There are no set standards for every hospital or clinic but rather each employer can choose to participate in ongoing training/certification. Online programs do exist and our gaining in popularity due to their reduced cost and time.

It Pays to be a Nurse
A nursing career is one of the most popular and most needed jobs in America. Currently there are more than 100,000 RN openings in the United States. By 2020 there will be a need for 800,000 RNs. The increased need is due to the world living longer and an increase in the geriatric population. Registered Nurses earn an average of $49,840 a year according to the U.S. Department of Labor. With such a need for nurses many hospitals are giving out huge signing bonuses up to $30,000 in some cases. If you enjoy taking care of people it definitely pays to look into nursing.


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