How to Get Into Nursing: A Step by Step Guide

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Nursing can be an excellent career choice that can take you in many different directions. And since the need for nurses in every area of the medical field is ongoing, this is a career path where you will be guaranteed job placement and success. If you think nursing might be the role for you, here’s how to get started.

Decide which nursing career you want to pursue

You should consider what kind of work you will be best at, and the kind of career environment you can thrive in. Do you prefer to work independently or on a team? Is caregiving your calling, or are you better at administration? The choice of education you pursue will help determine the kind of role you will have. As an RN, you will be qualified to work in a variety of venues, including hospitals, nursing care facilities, outpatient clinics, physicians’ offices, schools. You can also decide on an area of specialization, such as pediatrics, ambulatory care, or hospice.

Get the necessary education

Probably the most common degree nurses pursue is a BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing). However, there are other degree options as well. There is even a track to working in nursing without entering a degree program: you can study to be a CAN (certified nurse assistant) by participating in a state-approved training program.

A step up from this is the LPN, or licensed practical nurse. If you want to become an RN (registered nurse), the shortest path to this is to get a two-year associate degree in Nursing, though pursuing a four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing will open more opportunities.

If you’re interested in taking on leadership roles in the field of nursing, however, you may want to get a Master of Science in Nursing degree. Or if you are interested in research or education work, and executive leadership, you could aim for a doctoral degree after achieving your BSN or MSN. If you’re concerned about whether you will be able to juggle all this education with other career or personal obligations, online education may be a good choice for you, so long as the program you enter is fully accredited.

Many students have to take on loans in order to afford their education. If you have to take out loans, be sure to stay on top of them with apps that use a bank loan API. This will keep you apprised of all the relevant information about your loans in order to pay them off in a timely fashion.

Get licensed to practice

To practice in the field of nursing, you need to get a license after completing your degree and certification. Each state has its own requirements, so you should look up what your state’s nursing board has established as prerequisites for licensure, depending on your area of specialization.

To obtain your license, you will need to pass the state-administered exams. Additionally, in many states, you will not be permitted to work as a nurse until you have passed the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).

Find employment

Given the demand for nurses, there will be no shortage of job openings for you to consider. And you won’t be limited by geographical or regional considerations, since nurses are needed everywhereβ€”though, if you are interested in career advancement, you may want to go for a job in an area with thriving medical communities, such as those based near research centers or universities. If you need help on your search, enlist the professional services of MJW Careers. When you apply for jobs, read reviews on prospective employers, and try to find out whether salaries offered are competitive.

Whether your skillset tends more towards caregiving, or whether you feel you might thrive better in a leadership role, or in education or advocacy, nursing provides an array of opportunities for service and advancement.

This article is brought to you by MJW Careers, which makes it its mission to provide a career transition that’s as seamless as a freshly written resume. Founded in 2009 in Wilmington, NC, the company focuses on outplacement support, career coaching, interview prep, and resume writing for individual job seekers. With customized services, reliable personnel, and a commitment to quality, MJW Careers guides its clients to the right career path and a better, brighter future. For more information, please visit our website or contact us today!

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