If you are thinking of nursing as a career, there's no better time than now to make an entry into this profession. There's a growing demand for nurses, not just in the United States but all over the world. For those who love to travel, nursing opportunities could even await you in exotic locations.
On the home front, it is estimated that the need for nurses can only be adequately met if there is a 90 percent increase in the number of students enrolled for nursing programs, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.* Because of this, nurses entering the field today should have a wider range of specialized options to choose from. A shortage of nurses also means you might find yourself advancing more quickly in your career than you anticipated.
As jobs in other fields become harder to find, more men are also expected to enter the nursing field. The "female nurse" stereotype is being gradually dispelled as men, too, are making a mark in what was once considered to be a profession dominated by women.
Drawn to a career which holds job security despite a troubled economy, both men and women can look forward to a rewarding career in one of the fastest-growing sectors of the economy: The employment demand for nurses is expected to increase by 22 percent through 2018, resulting in 581,500 new jobs.**
To meet the growing need for qualified nurses, many colleges offer online and campus-based curriculums that combine classroom theory with training in a variety of real-life settings. Courses offered in nursing include an associate's degree in nursing education, bachelor's degree in nursing administration, and a masterís in nursing administration, to name a few.
Having nursing skills doesn't necessarily mean you have to work in a hospital environment. Many nurses take up jobs as case managers for managed care companies or work as research assistants for pharmaceutical companies. Opportunities are also open for travel nurses, forensic nurses, surgical nurses, legal nurse consultants, or for educators in nursing schools. If you have a natural aptitude for caring for and serving others, an exciting career in nursing could await you.
* Rosseter, Robert J. "Nursing Shortage Fact Sheet." American Association of Colleges of Nursing. Sept 2009. lchc.org/research/documents/NrsgShortageFS.pdf
**U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics. "Registered Nurses." Occupational Outlook Handbook 2010-2011. bls.gov/oco/ocos083.htm