Nurses were the stars of 2020. This year, nursing professionals faced a global pandemic, and the world learned how essential nursing is.
Nursing professionals overcame challenges they could never have imagined they would face. Across the globe, nurses demonstrated a tremendous amount of inner strength that positively affected many people’s bodies, minds, and spirits.
On the frontlines of a global pandemic, nurses showed far more courage, resilience, and strength.
As more nurses sought higher pay and job advancement, the nursing profession became increasingly autonomous, career-focused, and career-advanced.
Although advancement in nursing can occur in various ways, most of them require an advanced nursing degree.
To evaluate the benefits of an advanced nursing degree, we must first understand it. Because education, regardless of what field you are in, always pays off in the long run.
Hence, getting a higher education and advancing your degree will always be beneficial down the road.
- 1 What is an Advanced Nursing Degree?
- 2 Benefits of Nursing Education
- 3 Moving Forward
What is an Advanced Nursing Degree?
Degrees that serve to advance a nurse’s education or level of training are considered advanced nursing degrees.
By obtaining an Associate’s Degree in Nursing (AND), Licensed Practitioner Nurses can reach a higher level of training and become Registered Nurses (RN). RNs can advance further in the field by studying for a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing (BSN).
Another path that nurses can take is going for an RN to BSN Degree to pursue further advanced specializations if they wish.
Having a BSN can also lead to higher salaries and more employment opportunities. As a BSN nurse, you will gain nursing knowledge and prepare for graduate study or advanced practice nursing.
Nursing professionals with a BSN can provide higher-quality patient care and qualify for positions with greater responsibility and leadership duties.
Now that we know what skills and training a higher education in nursing offers, let us explain why one should opt for it.
Benefits of Nursing Education
1. Career advancement opportunities
Nurses who complete a BSN can go on to complete an MSN degree—in addition, having an MSN may open up additional career opportunities.
With the increasing academic achievement, nurses can work on developing their skills in a variety of areas. As a result, nurses with master’s degrees are often in higher demand.
To become a nurse practitioner or a nurse-midwife, individuals must obtain a master’s degree in nursing.
2. Opportunities for specialized knowledge
As nurses advance in their education, they develop sophisticated critical thinking skills and a deeper understanding of research.
Gaining new skills allows you to become more autonomous beyond the bedside. In addition, gaining new skills will enable you to advance your career.
In addition, if you would like to concentrate your work in a particular area of nursing, you may consider an MSN.
Nurses who earn an MSN can specialize in various nursing fields, including child health, maternity care, geriatric nursing, etc. You may be able to pursue your passions at an advanced level by focusing on a specific area of nursing.
3. Better Job Prospects
Payscale believes leadership and supervisory positions are the most lucrative BSN jobs. For example, an RN director could earn as much as $92,000 by May 2021. Clinical nurse managers make $87,000 per year, while nurse educators make $77,000.
The salaries of some RN specialties are also higher. Nurses working in critical care earn, on average, $75,340 a year.
Nurses in surgery earn, on average, $81,590 a year. It is not uncommon for emergency room nurses to make over six figures.
4. Flexibility in working hours
As nurses work during evenings, holidays, and weekends periodically, they devote most of their bedside nursing hours to these shifts.
However, with experience, these rigorous hours tend to decrease, as working overnight, on holidays, and on weekends becomes less necessary.
5. Opportunities for Career Advancement
Although leadership is the most preferred path in a nursing career, it is not the only path. Completing a doctorate or master’s degree can allow you to take on a wide range of career paths, like becoming a nurse practitioner or an educator.
6. Providing healthcare for a need
Higher education will enable you to provide patients with a higher standard of care. You’ll also be able to detect a broader spectrum of health problems ahead of time.
As a result, you create a more favorable environment for your patients while feeling fulfilled by the impact you make on their lives.
Moreover, the current and projected shortage of physicians in healthcare is a source of anxiety. Increasing one’s education and becoming a nurse practitioner allows nurses to fill that need within healthcare.
Increasing their education can also enable nurses to assume roles that used to be assigned to physicians. A shortage of nurse educators is also expected to worsen soon and the nursing shortage. You can help meet this need by obtaining higher education.
7. Improves teamwork
Health care teams consisting of professionals with different levels of education benefit everyone. Nursing staff with more experience and expertise can act as guides and pass on their knowledge and wisdom to less experienced staff members.
The process is reciprocal. The mentor gains knowledge from the process as well as inspiration for others. Others get to learn from experts firsthand through hands-on activities.
In addition to applying your skills in the field, higher education offers you the opportunity to inspire and mentor others.
8. Establishing credibility
Nursing is a profession where employees have a great deal of responsibility without a bachelor’s degree. We recognize that ADN and diploma nursing education are demanding courses that teach you the skills needed for the job. Because of this, some don’t bother to look beyond a degree.
By advancing your education, you can compete more effectively with other professions. The issuance of a degree also removes some difficulties with patients.
Patients often look down on you or ignore your advice, no matter how important it is, simply because you are a diploma holder rather than having a bachelor’s degree.
In all, gaining more knowledge can boost your confidence and assurance. In other words, it offers no drawbacks, and, as a nurse, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
In addition, you can pursue advanced nursing degrees online, so you can further your education without sacrificing your career.