From emergency medicine to pediatrics, nurses provide vital care to patients needing all kinds of medical assistance. However, nursing jobs aren’t without challenges. You’ve probably heard a few stories from different types of nurses about overnight shifts, stressful cases, and packed schedules.
Considering all that, what makes nursing a good profession to pursue?
While nursing can be a challenging career, it can also be an incredibly rewarding one. Those within the profession have exceptional nursing skills that positively impact—and even change the lives of—the patients they interact with. And that’s not the only benefit.
If you’re considering a career in nursing, consider these top benefits of becoming a nurse.
One incredible benefit of nursing is your array of options when entering the field. While most employers will prefer (and potentially even require) a bachelor’s of science in nursing (BSN degree), you can start your nursing career with a licensed practical nurse degree (LPN) or an associate degree in nursing (ADN).
- Licensed practical nurse degree – If you’re looking to begin your nursing career right away, an LPN typically only takes about a year to complete.1
- Associate degree in nursing – An ADN typically takes two years to complete, about half the time it takes to earn a BSN.2
Both options provide an excellent entry-level introduction to the nursing field and can help prepare you to earn your BSN later. As you study deeper in nursing education and apply for a BSN program, you'll discover different pathways to further your professional development. You can work as a certified nursing assistant, a travel nurse, or get involved with various nursing organizations dedicated to advancing your nursing profession.
#2 Career Growth
As the healthcare industry continues to evolve and expand, nurses are also encouraged to grow. For instance, as a nurse, you could explore career growth opportunities in:
- Advanced degrees, like a master’s of science in nursing or doctor nursing practice
- Leadership positions, like nurse manager, nurse supervisor, or director of nursing
- Teaching and nurse education in academic or on-site settings
- Research in patient care and outcomes studies
Nursing leadership roles and nurse educator positions are a few career opportunities you can explore if you are less interested in direct nursing practice.
#3 Positive Impact
Some heroes wear capes; others wear scrubs and stethoscopes. In other words, as a nurse, you can positively transform a person’s health and livelihood.
Through effective practice and emotional intelligence, nurses can create better patient outcomes. In fact, research shows that adequate numbers of educated nurses can improve health markers like:3
- Patient mortality risk
- Chronic health problems
- Patient treatment adherence
- Patient satisfaction
#4 Schedule Flexibility
Although nursing may come with long shifts or overnight work, the actual week-to-week schedule of most nursing jobs is often flexible.
In hospitals, nurses are usually assigned a three-day work week of three 12-hour shifts. This allows four days for nurses to work other jobs, take care of family members, or attend to any personal needs.
However, job flexibility can be impacted by the specific field of nursing you choose to pursue. For instance, certain public health roles and job locations, like schools or clinics, may have a more typical 9-to-5 schedule. On the other hand, travel nursing, facilitated by professional organizations, can offer great flexibility by allowing travel nurses to fulfill short-term contracts in various locations nationwide. Some nurses may find work in nursing homes, taking care of elderly residents.
#5 Specialization Opportunities
Another exciting benefit of being a registered nurse is the opportunity to pursue a specialty. Specialties allow nurses to dig deep into an area of medicine they find particularly fascinating or profound. While some specialties require a certification, most do not.
These specialties may include:
- Ambulatory care
- Cardiac care
- Substance abuse
Exploring a nursing specialty may involve collaboration with a certain nursing organization dedicated to that specific health science field.
#6 Transferable Skills
In their studies, nurses acquire information and skills that can be extremely useful in real-world situations. For instance, a nurse's understanding of physiology and various medical issues may help them provide care to loved ones at home.
Further, because nurses gain experience providing care quickly and efficiently, they may be better equipped to act calmly in medical-based situations in their own lives (for instance, if someone they’re with breaks an ankle or has an allergic reaction to food).
Many nurses also become excellent communicators while on the job—a valuable skill to have in various situations.
#7 Hassle-Free Wardrobe
While it may seem inconsequential, not having to worry about picking out an outfit before work every day can provide a great deal of convenience and even save nurses time when preparing for their shifts. Not to mention, scrubs and sneakers (the daily attire of most nurses) provide a far more comfortable option for hours of work than traditional business attire.
#8 Job Security
The world will always be in need of nurse practitioners. There will always be opportunities for the skilled and empathetic healthcare professional. Regardless of your location globally, the expertise and wisdom you possess as a nurse will remain important and indispensable. Given the constant evolution of diseases, the ever-changing landscape of medical technology, and the projected surge in the elderly population, the demand for both experienced and starting nurses will remain strong.
Learn More About the Benefits of Nursing at Alliant International University
A career in nursing can offer many benefits, like the opportunity to improve people’s lives, a flexible work schedule, specialization options, and more. The future of nursing is growing and expanding. If you’re considering a career in nursing, you’ll need to start by acquiring the right education for your nursing degree. Luckily, that’s where Alliant International University can help.
At our School of Nursing and Health Sciences, our bachelor’s of science in nursing program and master’s of science in nursing direct entry program are crafted to meet your needs regardless of your former education.
Explore our School of Nursing and Health Sciences programs today to discover the top benefits of nursing for yourself.
- “Nurse.org Career Guide Series – Licensed Practical Nurse.” Nurse.org. July 04, 2022. https://nurse.org/resources/licensed-practical-nurse-lpn-lvn/. Accessed February 23, 2023.
- “What is an ADN Program? – The Complete Guide.” NursingProcess.org. 2023. https://www.nursingprocess.org/adn-programs/. Accessed February 23, 2023.
- Coster, Samantha, Mary Watkins, and Ian.J Norman. 2018. “What Is the Impact of Professional Nursing on Patients’ Outcomes Globally? An Overview of Research Evidence.” International Journal of Nursing Studies 78 (February): 76–83. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2017.10.009. Accessed February 14, 2022.