Nursing is a noble profession. One does not only need to have the caring attitude and the desire to help the sick but also the necessary education about medical science, disease process and medication administration, human behaviour, interpersonal relationship and many more.
There are many programs to attain an education in nursing. Whatever program you chose, there is an equivalent career opportunity for you after graduation. This article will focus on the BSN program, career opportunities and the present salary a BSN-educated licensed nurse receives.
What is the BSN Program?
The Bachelor of Science in Nursing or BSN is a four-year program consisting of general education and professional courses. Professional courses begin in the first year and threads through the development of competencies up the fourth year level.
The BSN program provides an intensive nursing practicum that will refine clinical skills from the first year level to ensure basic clinical competencies required of a beginning nurse practitioner.
Regardless of what college or university you will take your BSN, the aim of the program is to prepare a nurse who, upon completion of the program, demonstrates beginning professional competencies and shall continue to assume responsibility for professional development and utilizes research findings in the practice of the profession.
Leaders of the nursing profession believe that graduates of Bachelor of Science in Nursing program must be able to apply analytical and critical thinking in the nursing practice. The nurse must display competence in the different areas of responsibilities in delivering patient/client care.
This will encompass safe and quality nursing care, management of resources and environment, health education, legal responsibility, ethico-moral responsibility, personal and professional development, quality improvement, research, record management, collaboration and teamwork, and communication.
Career Opportunities and Wage Potential
Whatever reasons lead you to take up BSN and plan a career in nursing, the profession is very in-demand nowadays.
Graduates of the BSN program and NCLEX-RN certified, a beginning nurse practitioner may pursue the following career paths but not limited to:
- Clinical Nursing
- Community Health Nursing
- Private-duty Nursing
- Occupational Health Nursing
- School Nursing
- Military Nursing
- Health Education
The salary a registered nurse makes is fairly lucrative and enticing. Not to mention the perks or bonuses, and other recruitment incentives being offered by the employers. We are talking here of recruitment bonuses (ranging anywhere from $2,000 to $20,000), relocation assistance, housing assistance, day care (if you have children), and even tuition and NCLEX-RN reimbursements.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ 2012-13 Occupational Outlook Handbook reported that the median annual wage of registered nurses was $64,690 or $31.10 per hour. Of course, actual salaries may vary on several factors such as specialization within the field, location or state that will determine the cost of living, years of experience and level of nursing degree or nursing education.
In addition, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projected that employment of registered nurses is expected to grow 26 percent from 2010 to 2020, faster than the average for all occupations.
The reasons cited for this rapid growth lies on technological advancements, an increased emphasis on preventative care, and the large, aging baby-boomer population who will demand more healthcare services as they live longer and more active lives.