If you’re looking to get ahead, one of the best pathways is still advanced academic programs. Nothing impresses a potential employer more than a degree from an accredited college or university. This goes for current employers who may be considering promotions, raises or in extreme cases survivors of layoffs.
In general, nursing is a high paying and very stable career option. Demand for nurses continues to rise year over year and is projected to grow by more than 30 percent in the next decade. This is clearly good news to nurses already in the system, but it also means more entrants can be expected as word gets out in a troubled economy that nursing is where the jobs reside.
Experienced nurses who want to determine the direction their future takes rather than leave it to fate will want to identify a specialty that appeals to their own style and substance and pursue that option.
There are many nursing specialties available including: Ambulatory care; cardiac care, dermatology, pediatric, flight/transport; emergency; home healthcare; midwifery; instruction; orthopedic and psychiatric nursing to name just a few. Other less obvious concentrations include law and business.
In making decisions on which avenue to pursue, consider strongly multiple factors. You must decide first what field appeals to you most and then factor that against your known personal abilities and qualities. If chaotic and high stress scenarios aren’t your thing, for example, you won’t want to pursue emergency care as a specialty. Once you’ve decided what you really want to do, you should consider whether the field is going to experience growth or possibly stagnate. You don’t want to invest time and money into a degree that won’t serve your needs. It’s only once you’ve closed the gap separating your desire from what will be most advantageous to your career that you should make the move to enter an academic program.
Many of the above mentioned specialties require additional instruction and may necessitate a master’s degree or law certification – both of which include entrance exam scores as deciding factors. Nurses considering taking the LSAT or GMAT tests, for law school and business school respectively, may want to consider preparatory classes like Los Angeles GMAT prep that are frequently offered in medium to large cities.
As new hospitals, clinics and doctor’s offices open in order to serve the increased Baby Boomer demand, professionals with specific skill sets will be highly sought. Nurses who can demonstrate proven ability to add value to the organization’s mission and bottom line will advance readily in comparison to colleagues who have paid less attention to continuing education.