Becoming a registered nurse has long been a viable option for students who want a quick and reliable path towards a stable career in the medical field. It’s widely known that hospitals and clinics everywhere are in perpetual need of nursing staff, and the long-standing shortage of nurses in the U.S. is only expected to increase within the next five years as healthcare facilities appear to accommodate the rising population nationwide. Likewise, nursing provides the opportunity for travel as well, as nurses are in high demand in virtually every country. With that said, here are three specific reasons why nursing remains an ideal career choice, even in today’s fast-changing world:
1. Easy Entry and Fast Education
It’s possible to earn a nursing degree in just 24 months, at which point you’ll be eligible to apply for your first position as an RN. Plus, you can earn the degree from home using a distance learning program like Regis College Online. Furthermore, after you’ve earned an entry-level degree, you can later advance your career by earning a Regis MSN-DNP. In addition, once you’re part of the workforce, you’ll enjoy an unemployment rate of around 2%, which means that around 98% of nurses are gainfully employed at any given time. Unlike nursing degree programs offered by physical universities, online programs make it possible to do your studying and test work at any hour of the day or night, from anywhere with an internet connection.
2. Expected Shortage of Nurses
The medical field has been experiencing a prolonged shortage of nursing staff and other professionals for several decades due to the world population booming from three billion in 1960 to roughly 7.6 billion as of 2018. While the population has essentially doubled, the percentage of students pursuing nursing careers has stayed relatively stagnant, so the shortage is actually becoming worse rather than being alleviated by new graduates. Although all countries are experiencing a similar shortage, many analysts are predicting that the U.S. could be headed towards the worst nursing shortage in any nation.
3. Widespread Job Availability
With the American population exceeding 320 million and less than four million active nurses working to accommodate the country’s medical needs, it’s not surprising that there are open positions for nurses in just about every geographical region. Outside of the domestic openings, there are also plenty of opportunities abroad and an RN can even choose to become a travel nurse to visit a range of different destinations, rather than reporting to the same healthcare facility for years consecutively.
Opportunities for Career Advancement
Another great reason to consider becoming a nurse is that it provides you with fundamental experience in the healthcare sector, which then opens the door to many other kinds of job opportunities. In fact, many doctors, surgeons, and other advanced medical professionals begin their careers as nurses before moving on to pursue a master’s degree in their chosen specialty. The good part is that with an increasing number of online courses popping up, you won’t have to worry about squeezing in your new degree program while still retaining a lucrative position as a nurse.