What Can I Do with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree?
A Bachelor of Science in Nursing*, also known as an RN to BSN, is more versatile than you may think. Whether your home state has mandated you return to school for your degree, or if you see college as a necessary step to enhance your career opportunities, a BSN will give you greater control over the direction you want to go.**
Yet the question for many students and graduates remains: What can I do with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree?
Nurses with a BSN Are in Demand
More and more hospitals are seeking magnet designation to attract and signify to patients that their facility provides quality health care, and many RNs are being asked to return to school to earn their BSN degree. What’s more, in 2017, researchers highlighted four factors that would drive demand for qualified nurses in the United States for the next two decades. They are:
1. Aging Baby Boomers
The generation born between 1946 to 1964, which sits around 76 million strong, has reached retirement age, and though advancements in medicine and therapies has improved quality of life, seniors will continue to rely on healthcare services for decades to come.
2. Retiring Physicians
Among those retiring are experienced physicians, researchers determined, and they say a shortage of primary care and specialty care doctors will increase the burden on the nurses.
3. Retiring Nurses
Likewise, many of those who have been in the nursing profession for decades are also opting to retire. Researchers estimate that one million registered nurses will retire by 2030, leaving behind a talent gap that can only be filled by a new generation of workers.
4. Healthcare Reform
With expanding insurance coverage, evolving technology, and changes to patient care procedures and policies, educated nursing professionals are in demand. Though the first three factors explain why you may see more opportunities available when starting your post-college career, the fourth truly emphasizes the importance of your college degree.
Career Options for BSN Graduates
Registered nurses are already among the most in-demand health professionals in the country, with the occupation growing much faster than average, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The BSN is designed to bring you to the next level and expand your post-graduate career opportunities. Among those positions you may consider:
- Clinical Director
- Director of Nursing
- Nurse Manager
- Practice Administrator
- Program Manager
- Public Health Nurse
- School Nurse
- Nurse Educator
- Home Health Nurse
- Telehealth Nurse
Additionally, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts healthcare occupations as a whole to grow 14% through 2028, adding about 1.9 million new jobs – more than any other occupational groups. The majority of those occupations require a college degree.
The Nursing Skills You Need to Succeed
Much like the healthcare industry itself, nursing education has changed in recent years. Ashford University’s BSN degree for example, hones in on the tech-related skills, policy knowledge, and vital practical experience that today’s registered nurses need to succeed. Here are the main 4:
1. Leadership and Decision-making
If your goal is to lead or manage people, courses such as NUR 406: Leading and Managing in Nursing will help you gain essential soft skills, such as delegation, supervision, teamwork, the healthcare ethical decision-making processes, strategic planning, and business negotiation.
2. Knowledge of Communities and Cultures
As travel has become an essential component of the nursing occupation, courses such as NUR 302: Transcultural Nursing Care examines cultural differences and similarities that you must be prepared for in your day-to-day work.
3. Health Informatics and Tech Experience
The rapid adoption of electronic health records has spurred a demand for nurses with experience in basic database architecture, design and file structure, and data warehousing and data mining. Ashford’s HIM 301: Introduction to Health Informatics course allows you to build a foundation of tech knowledge and remain at the forefront of a rapidly changing industry.
4. Policies and Regulations
As healthcare is a highly regulated industry, and regulations are always changing, it is imperative that today’s nurses understand concepts of risk management, continuous quality assurance, guardianship, Institutional Review Boards, and the needs of special and diverse populations. HCA 322: Health Care Ethics & Medical Law is an essential course for every healthcare professional.
Move Forward with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree
The nationwide demand for qualified and educated healthcare workers — nurses, specifically — was well-documented before the onset of the 2020 Coronavirus pandemic. With hospitals and healthcare clinics in several states stretched to the limit, there has never been a more important time to apply your education to an honorable and sustainable career. If you are a Registered Nurse ready to take the next step, contact an Ashford University advisor about your Bachelor of Science in Nursing today.
Written by Ashford University Staff
*Certain degree programs may not be available in all states.
**Applicants to this program must have earned a nursing (hospital) diploma or associate degree in nursing from a regionally accredited or approved nationally accredited college or university including the following coursework or equivalent: Microbiology (with lab). Applicants must possess an active, unrestricted license to practice as a Registered Nurse or its equivalent in at least one U.S. state. All students must maintain this licensure throughout the program of study. Failure to do so will result in dismissal from the program. Students are responsible for informing Ashford of any change to the status of their RN license. In addition, Ashford may perform routine, periodic validations of student RN licenses to ensure compliance with this requirement.