Nursing Career Advice, Please Help!

Question And Answer Series On www.NursingDegree.Net

Question: I’ve been looking online trying to find some information
and I can’t find anything, if you could please help. I have a AS degree in
Medical Assistant and I am also certified as a MA with NCCT. I would like to
further my career in nursing but can find any information on what is the next
best step. Any information would be greatly appreciated. Thank You.

- Susan, February 28, 2007 (name changed for privacy)

Answer: Hi Susan. This advice goes out to anyone planning their career regardless of field, Nursing, Healthcare or other. There are 4 ways you need to approach this, 3 of which involve the internet.

1) Search for current job postings on, Yahoo Hot Jobs and your local hospital’s website to see what they are asking for minimum job requirements. Pay attention to all of what your read: job titles, job descriptions and minimum requirements. For the job you want, what licenses do you need – LPN, RN, other – and what are the minimum education requirements?

2) Review health care salary statistics from the US government BLS web site. While your on the BLS web site, look up Nurse or Registered Nurse, for example. Does the job description look appealing to you from both perspectives – money and job satisfaction?

3) Become familiar with the entrance requirements for Bachelor and Master Degree programs you might wish to pursue in the future. The Nursing Degree Network web site can help you here. Simply find a few nursing schools in your state, and visit the school web sites for nursing degree entrance requirements.

This is a very important step for nurses looking to return to school. It’s easy to say “I’ll enroll into a Registered Nurse degree completion program next year” only to find out that you don’t meet the entrance requirements, and could have addressed the issue sooner.

4) Offline, talk to those working in the field you would like to work. For example, if you want to work in a hospital, go visit the hospital and find Human Resources or a hiring manager. Say you’re interested in working at the hospital but not sure how to get started. Everyone’s busy, so you’ll have to do you best to talk to someone. If career advancement is what you are after, speak with those who do the hiring inside your organization. Again, you’re looking for the basics: job title, job description and minimum requirements,.

Never take just one person’s advice. Just listen to what other’s have to say, then use everything you’ve learned to make your own best decision. Obtaining Registered Nurse status is great and can open up doors for you in the health care field. If that is the path you choose, you might have to back up a few steps before moving forward again.

Find a school that will allow you to transfer in your existing college credits. Watch accreditation carefully, particularly if you wish to later enter a NLN or CCNE accredited nursing school at the Bachelor or Master degree level. In other words, the entrance requirements will state “must have graduated from a NLN accredited nursing degree program.”

Good luck, plan ahead, and never give up!

- NursingDegree.Net

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