What Are the Benefits of Earning a Nursing Degree?
Are you looking for a career that allows you to help others, immerse yourself in the medical field, and make a difference every day? Nursing can offer all of this. As nurses care for patients, work alongside doctors and other medical professionals, and administer medications, they help others in many ways.
And nurses are always learning on the job. But, in order to begin a career as a nurse, you need a degree. Earning a nursing degree will open doors into a new world – and there are plenty of benefits that come with your degree.
If you’re interested in becoming a nurse, here are some of the biggest benefits that a nursing degree can offer.
Nurses Are In Demand
Nurses are always needed. They’re a central component of the medical system – they’re needed every day in doctor’s offices, hospitals, urgent care centers, schools, and other settings. Because of this, nurses are always in demand.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, nursing is a job field that’s already growing. The demand for registered nurses is expected to grow 15 percent through 2026, and it’s currently growing faster than the average for all other occupations.
Nurses will become increasingly necessary – and important – as the public’s health becomes more demanding. More people are seeking preventative care, and as a result more chronic conditions like diabetes and obesity are being diagnosed. Additionally, with the Baby Boomer population rapidly aging, there will be a huge increase in the need for senior medical care.
Earning a nursing degree will give you an education that prepares you for this fast-growing, in-demand field where jobs are readily available.
You Can Earn Up to Six Figures
Nursing isn’t an easy job. But, with a nursing degree and the right credentials and experience, you can be compensated well for this tough career.
If you work in an entry-level nursing position, in a role like nursing assistant or orderly, you’ll earn an average median salary of approximately $27,000. However, these positions often don’t require a nursing degree – the more education you’re able to earn, the higher your pay can be.
Nurses’ wages only increase as you seek out jobs that require more education and more experience. For example, licensed practical and vocational nurses earn a median average salary of $44,000.
Registered nurses rake in even more, earning an average of $70,000 per year.
However, if you take your nursing degree farther and become a nurse practitioner, you’ll earn a median salary that totals six figures: the average median salary is $107,000 per year.
Your earning potential is vast when you have a nursing degree. You can choose any path, and your income can increase greatly over time.
You Can Work in a Variety of Settings
While most people assume nurses only work in hospitals or doctor’s offices, the truth is nurses can work in many different settings. Having a nursing degree doesn’t restrict you to traditional medical settings – you can actually work in just about any industry.
Nurses and nursing assistants can work in schools, camps, mental health facilities, and nursing homes. They’re also needed in prisons, military bases and facilities, blood banks, and rehab centers. Even cruise ships need nurses on board.
If you don’t want to work directly with patients, there are other ways to use your nursing degree. You can use your medical knowledge to start a totally different career, like a medical journalist, a healthcare lobbyist, or even work for a nonprofit.
You can change your career to suit your interests, whether that’s working with patients or choosing a specialization that fits your desires.
You Have Options When Earning Your Degree
There are a few different paths to earning a nursing degree.
Those who are just getting started often earn an associate’s degree in nursing, which will give you the preparation you need to work in entry-level nursing jobs. Some jobs will accept diplomas from approved nursing programs too.
If you’re looking to become a registered nurse (RN), you’ll want to earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing, or a BSN. After earning your degree, you’ll need to become licensed in your state.
No matter the path you’d like to take, there’s no one way to earn your nursing degree. You can choose from the following options:
- A traditional college or university: Many people choose to study at a traditional college or university. This means you’ll apply into a nursing degree program, and once accepted, you’ll attend classes on campus for the length of the program.
- An online college or university: Online degree programs are much more common and readily available today. Nursing students can earn their degrees entirely online, right from home. You won’t have to commute or attend classes on campus.
- A combination program: Some nursing degree programs will combine both online and in-person education. For example, you may take classes online, but have to attend labs and hands-on learning sessions at a college campus.
No matter how you earn your nursing degree, you’ll get the opportunity to put your knowledge into practice. You can get valuable experience and begin working quickly. Some programs can even be completed in as little as two years.
Earn Your Nursing Degree and Start a New Career
However you choose to earn your nursing degree, you can opt for flexibility and convenience. Online degree programs offer you the opportunity to learn from anywhere, any time – without sacrificing any of your education’s quality.
And if an online nursing degree program is the best option for you, there are plenty of available options. In order to find them, you just need to search online. You can search for online nursing degree programs for associate’s degrees or bachelor’s degrees.
Once you begin studying, you’ll be well on your way to starting your new career in nursing.