Whether you’re at school choosing what to studying in college, or are looking for a career change later in life, you may find yourself toying with the idea of becoming a nurse.
There are a huge number of reasons why people choose to become a nurse. Sometimes, it’s a personal experience with a nurse or in a hospital that inspires someone. Other times it might be a case of being told ‘you would make an amazing nurse.’ It might even be just the idea of giving back that draws you to a career in nursing.
If you’ve got any doubts about becoming a nurse, or want to understand more about why people choose this profession, here are 11 reasons to consider a career in nursing.
Nurses are in high demand
As baby boomers become retiring age, hospitals are becoming shorter staffed than before and require more nurses to join their team and makeup numbers. But even then, most health organizations are still short-staffed. Nurses are always in high demand, which means when you have finished your training, you can quite quickly enter the workforce. This is something that’s really unique to healthcare, while other graduates can take months – even years – to gain a job in their studied profession.
You have the chance to really help people
Nurses are an integral part of any health establishment. While providing care to the most vulnerable of patients, nurses are also able to play the ‘middle man’ role between doctors and families. Whether the family or patient is receiving good or bad news, nurses are there to lend a hand, be a shoulder to cry on, or provide comfort to those that need it.
Aside from providing empathy, nurses have a real chance to help people get the care they need, whether that’s in the emergency room, delivery room, or ICU.
Although money isn’t everything, and it’s certainly not something to consider as the main reason to get into nursing, the job does pay the bills. According to the US Bureau of Labour Statistics, the median salary for registered nurses (RNs) was $73,300 a year. For licensed practical nurses (LPNs), the median salary is $47,480.
There are so many ways to specialize
As well as being a general registered nurse, nursing has a huge spectrum of specialisms that can be studied. Everything from midwifery and dnp neonatal courses to family nurse practitioners, mental health nursing, and pediatrics can be studied to propel your career.
There are also possibilities to continue in the nursing industry even after the physical job becomes too taxing. For example, Nurse Executives work with the key healthcare decision-makers to improve services for staff and patients alike. In a more managerial or administrative nursing role, you can advocate for the nursing community and push for the changes you want to see.
Nursing offers a huge community of support
From unions, online forums, blogs, and community groups, nursing has a huge support system to help you reach your career goals and provide the best service possible to your patients. Nurses will quickly become close with other nurses on their work shifts and support each other through tough days. Nursing can be an incredibly emotional and taxing job and requires everyone to support each other.
You can benefit from great flexibility
Nursing isn’t just a standard 9-5, and offers plenty of shift flexibility. But this isn’t the only way flexibility comes into nursing. As well as shift schedules and specialisms, nurses are needed in just about every location on the planet. This means becoming a nurse opens a huge door of opportunities no matter where you find yourself. From traditional locations like hospitals and GP practices, to home care, school, and community options, there’s a need for nursing in small and large organizations. You could even find yourself working as an emergency flight nurse.
Flexible Studying Options
Unlike a dentist or doctor – which only really has one academic path available – studying options to become a nurse are quite flexible and can be developed over a short on a longer period of time. Plus, once you’ve gained your initial qualification, you can then continue to specialize and study other niches to further your career.
Nursing courses also require in-work placements, meaning you are able to continue with your current health care role while studying. For example, taking a course to become an LPN will open the door to several job opportunities. With this, you can continue working while training to become a Registered Nurse. After, you can then gain your bachelor’s in Nursing or study midwifery, pediatrics, or other specialist courses.
Nursing is a well-respected profession
According to Gallup research polls, nursing is consistently rated the most respected profession. Nurses are known for ethical and honest work and as a result, are respected worldwide. Nursing is a profession you can be proud of.
Every day is different
If there’s one thing you can guarantee with a career in nursing, it’s that you’ll never be bored. Every day will be different and feature a huge number of patients, incidents, and responsibilities. No two days will ever be the same.
Nursing is an exciting profession that couldn’t be further from a standard office job. While there are levels of admin and paperwork required, most of the job will focus on being up on your feet, interacting and caring for patients, and creating a positive environment across the department.
You can make a real difference
The real difference between nurses and other health professionals is their ability to provide compassion and comfort to patients and their families. Nursing is much more than dispensing medication or treating injuries. Everything from making conversation with patients or entertaining children and being a shoulder to cry on can bring reassurance and positivity to someone’s life. Every day, nurses make a difference in at least one person’s life.
There’s high job satisfaction
With all these reasons to consider, it’s no wonder that job satisfaction is incredibly high in nursing. When registered nurses from AMN Healthcare were surveyed in 2017, 83% of nurses stated they felt truly satisfied with their decision to pursue a career in nursing. And, two-thirds of nurses interviewed said they would encourage others to train as nurses.