While the economy has caused many hospitals to stop hiring new nursing grads temporarily, the overall outlook for the nursing career is good.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of registered nurses is expected to grow by 26% from 2010’s numbers to 2020 — which is faster than the average for all careers.
Even though the job market might be tough for new nursing grads as of early 2013, this is still a great career to go into. Here’s why:
The Job Market for Nurses Will Improve
The reason new grads are finding the job market tough to break right now is because the economy has forced many RNs who would normally have retired by now to keep their positions.
But with many nurses set to retire in the next decade, along with medical care becoming more accessible, nursing is set to become a great career prospect again — even for new grads.
A Variety of Specializations to Choose From
Whether you want to work in emergency medicine, elder care, pediatrics, or oncology, nursing offers you the option to specialize. The medical field is constantly expanding, and you have a wide range of options from which to choose.
As of 2010, the median pay for an RN was $64,690 per year. Nurses in highly specialized positions can make upwards of $90,000 per year.
With many other professions cutting back due to the economy, a job in the medical field can help support your family if your spouse suddenly joins the ranks of the unemployed.
Depending on what type of nursing you want to go into, training and education can range in price and difficulty.
The bare minimum education you’ll need to go into nursing is a diploma program administered in a hospital, and you may be limited in the types of nursing jobs you’re allowed to do with this diploma.
The next step is an associate’s degree, which you’ll earn after a two-year program. Most nurses with associate’s degrees look to earn a bachelor’s degree eventually, which will give you a more thorough education and open more job prospects to you.
Once you’ve got your degree, you’ll have to pass the National Council Licensure Examination, along with any tests or other requirements your state may have.
Tuition costs for nursing programs can vary widely depending on which school you go to, and which program you choose. If you decide that nursing is the career path for you, be sure to research your college options thoroughly, and choose a program that will give you the education you need without putting you too far in debt.
Nursing students who are graduating in 2013 may have a challenging time finding jobs, but the overall outlook for the nursing career is good.
If you feel that you’ve got what it takes to be a nurse, now may be a good time to start polishing up your resume and exploring your training options.
About the Author: Angie Mansfield writes on a variety of business and consumer topics, including home protection.