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How to Become A Registered Nurse

As a registered nurse, you would be joining the largest healthcare occupation, already accounting for 2.7 million jobs, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and projected to grow much faster than the average between 2010 and 2020. The following are some career specialties you may consider and their basic job descriptions:

Rn Registered Nursing
    1. Nurse practitioners provide nursing and healthcare services in a variety of areas.
    2. Nurse-midwives monitor future moms and assist in labor and delivery.
    3. Nurse anesthetists assist with anesthesia during surgery.
    4. Critical care nurses care for patients with serious illnesses in intensive care hospital units.
    5. Home healthcare nurses care for patients after discharge from hospitals.
    6. Clinical nurse specialists care directly for patients in areas such as psychiatric-mental health.

     

      As a registered nurse, you could specialize in the treatment of a particular ailment, such as diabetes, HIV/AIDS, or cancer; or a particular organ or body system, such as the heart, the skin, or the reproductive system. You could also provide preventive and acute care to a specific population, such as babies or the elderly; or treat military personnel or under-served communities worldwide. You could even assist with criminal investigations, become a medical writer or a public policy adviser.

      Nursing schools

      To become a registered nurse, you should possess a diploma, associate or bachelor's degree from one of the approved registered nursing schools, as well as a registered nurse license. Advance practice nurses, including clinical nurse specialists, nurse anesthetists, nurse-midwives, and nurse practitioners, must have master's degrees. It may take you two to three years to complete diploma or associate degrees and four years to finish a bachelor's degree.

      If you already possess a bachelor's degree in another field and are interested in becoming a registered nurse, schools often provide accelerated bachelor's degree programs that can be completed in 12 to 18 months, or master's degree programs that can be completed in about two years. It is important that you pass a national licensing examination, known as the National Council Licensure Examination or NCLEX-RN, in order to obtain a registered nurse license in the United States.

      Registered nurse: salary expectations

      For a registered nurse, salary depends on the level and the location of the job within the United States. In 2011, the BLS reports the following mean and top-paying annual wages for nursing careers:

        1. U.S. average--$69,110
        2. California (highest paying state)--$90,860
        3. Vallejo-Fairfield, CA (highest paying metropolitan area)--$120,540

         

          As a RN, your salary should increase as you advance in your career. You could start as a staff nurse in a hospital and become chief of nursing. You could also pursue a master's degree and become an advance practice nurse. You may also have the option to move into the business side of healthcare, managing ambulatory, acute, home-based, or chronic care businesses, or marketing pharmaceutical or insurance company products or services. Teaching potential registered nurses or conducting research are two other career paths that you may also consider as a RN.

          Sources:
          Bureau of Labor Statistics, OOH, 2013, Registered Nurses: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Registered-nurses.htm
          Bureau of Labor Statistics, OES, 2013, Registered Nurses: http://www.bls.gov/oes/2011/may/oes291111.htm

          Program outcomes vary according to each institution’s specific curriculum, and employment opportunities are not guaranteed.


          Registered Nurse Training

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                    Bachelor of Science in Nursing
                    West Coast University , North Hollywood
                    • Began in 1909 as a single classroom in Los Angeles.
                    • Offers no-cost dental clinic in Anaheim, where students gain experience by offering a selection of free dental services.
                    • Involved in philanthropy, through partnerships with several organizations, such as the California Institute for Nursing and Healthcare (CINHC) and Shriner’s Hospital.
                    • Accredited by The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) Senior College and University Commission.
                    • Has 4 California campuses and 2 other campuses in Florida and Texas.
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                    Master of Science in Nursing - Nursing Education
                    • Helps students advance their education with a graduate degree, including a Doctor of Education, Executive MBA, and more.
                    • Home of the Harold D. Buckingham Graduate School, which offers flexible study options for master’s programs in business, management, and nursing.
                    • Students may choose online or on-campus programs to better accommodate their work or personal schedules.
                    • Programs are designed to help students take what they learn in class and apply it at work the next day.
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                    Nursing (Post-licensure) - Bachelor
                    • Average class size is 25, allowing for more one-on-one time with instructors.
                    • Has a 97% employment rate among available graduates.
                    • All  graduates receive Lifetime Employment  Assistance—free and forever.
                    • Michigan's largest independent college.
                    • Most instructors are working professionals in the fields they teach.
                    • Programs are continuously updated to ensure classes are career-relevant and in sync with what's needed in the industry
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                    Master of Science in Nursing Online
                    • Study at a university accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc.
                    • Immediately apply what you’re learning to current workplace challenges
                    • Experience the convenience and flexibility of online learning—access coursework 24/7
                    • Take advantage of four start dates per year
                    • Benefit from no required GRE/GMAT 
                    • Enjoy small class sizes and students from diverse backgrounds
                    • Earn your degree from a respected institution in as few as 18 months
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                    Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing
                    • Ranked one of the Top Public Schools in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
                    • Founded in 1766 as a public institution; it has a main campus in New Brunswick, New Jersey and offers many programs online.
                    • Has an average freshman retention rate of 91.8%.
                    • Its student-faculty ratio is 14:1, and 38% of its classes have fewer than 20 students.
                    • Has famous alumni including chef and restauranteur Mario Batali, author Junot Diaz, actor James Gandolfini, and former U.S. Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky.
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                    Master of Science in Nursing - Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner
                    • Ranked 23rd among the Best Online Graduate Education Programs in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
                    • A public research university with an enrollment of more than 42,000 students.
                    • Its student-faculty ratio is 16:1, and 43.1% of its classes have fewer than 20 students.
                    • Has been the source of many discoveries creating positive change for society including co-op education and the oral polio vaccine since its founding in 1819.
                    • Provides distance learning advisors to assist students.
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                    Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)
                    • Ranked among the 2015 Best National Universities by U.S. News & World Report.
                    • Designated as a Military Friendly School every year since 2012 by Victory Media.
                    • Offers credit for prior learning and experience through assessment tests.
                    • Provides a short term Leadership Certification program in partnership with EQUIP®.
                    • Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
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                    Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing to Doctor of Nursing Practice (BSN to DNP)-Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AGACNP)
                    • Ranked among the Best National Universities in 2015 by the U.S. News & World Report.
                    • The student-faculty ratio is 12:1, with an average class size of 15.
                    • The average freshman retention rate, an indicator of student satisfaction, is 83.8%.
                    • 90% of faculty hold Ph.D or terminal degrees in their field.
                    • Offers more than 75 degrees at the undergraduate, masters and doctoral levels to students from 49 states and 28 countries.
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                    RN to BS

                    • Offers accredited online bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, and doctor of nursing programs to help both working professionals and recent graduates advance their careers.

                    • Provides graduate nursing programs that teach cutting-edge professional knowledge and skills to prepare students for today’s dynamic, evolving health care industry.
                    • Teaches through an online learning system that allows students to complete coursework with the flexibility to fit their schedule, while a cohort structure helps them to collaborate with fellow students.

                    •Provides scholarships, grants and other forms of financial aid to those who qualify.

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                    B.S. in Nursing: RN to BSN
                    • Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs by U.S. News and World Report in 2015.
                    • Founded in 1890, it has a campus in Waterbury, CT and offers online degree program in eight-week modules, six times a year.
                    • About 800 students are enrolled at the main campus, and about half of them commute.
                    • Online courses help make it possible for students to earn a bachelor’s degree in as little as 24 months and a master’s degree in 12-18 months.
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                    • Flexible Scheduling
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