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What Can Earning a BSN Do for Me?
As a working professional in the field, returning to school to earn or complete a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree might not seem necessary—but it can yield a number of advantages. And for some positions, it might soon become mandatory. New York adopted a bill in 2017 requiring its RNs to earn a BSN within a decade in order to renew their licenses. Other states, such as Rhode Island and New Jersey, are considering similar legislation, and the U.S. military already requires its practicing active-duty nurses to have a BSN degree.1,2
Taking action now to earn your BSN could open the door to more job opportunities, a broader range of responsibilities, and much more. Here are some possible outcomes:
Gain Leadership Skills
While most RN programs focus on clinical skills, BSN programs take student experiences to another level. Courses focus on leadership, research, and critical thinking. The curriculum might also explore emerging ideas like population health and information management in the digital age. For example, Walden University’s online RN to BSN program includes a course that explores improving public health for at-risk populations by working with families and local partners. Other courses consider policy implications and social justice in healthcare. BSN graduates emerge with a breadth of knowledge and experience, prepared to lead teams and work with other healthcare professionals to improve patient outcomes.
Focus on Your Strengths
As a registered nurse, you already impact the lives of your patients. But a return to nursing school could potentially expand your job opportunities in the future. BSN graduates are prepared for a variety of clinical and administrative roles in inpatient and outpatient settings, including federal agencies and healthcare foundations. And with a BSN, you’re equipped to work in maternity, oncology, surgery, cardiology, or other specialty areas. Your responsibilities and daily tasks could change, and might include supervision of teams, creating treatment protocols, and mentoring other nurses. Or you might work closely with patients, reviewing their medical history and assessing current conditions and medications. No matter your trajectory, earning a BSN can equip you with the skills to pursue your personal preferences within your nursing career—so you can use your natural strengths to make a difference.
Enjoy Job Security
A survey conducted by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing showed that 94% of nurses secured employment within four to six weeks of completing their bachelor’s in nursing program. More than 80% of employers say they strongly prefer BSN-prepared nurses, and more than 40% of hospitals and healthcare facilities are requiring that incoming nurses have their bachelor’s.3
Be a Better Nurse
Studies have shown that nurses who hold a BSN degree are significantly more prepared than those with an associate degree. One such study looked at 16 areas of quality and safety in nursing—including data analysis, project implementation, critical thinking, and health promotion. In 12 of the 16 areas, BSN graduates outperformed RNs without a bachelor’s degree.4
Clearly, nurses are in demand, and those with advanced degrees can gain a competitive edge that allows them to pursue specific interests in a career they love. In a changing healthcare environment that’s focused on primary and preventative care, it makes sense to consider pursuing a BSN—and by choosing an online RN to BSN program, you may be able to enjoy greater flexibility than with on-campus programs.
Walden University has two learning options for its online BSN program. The course-based format offers instructor-led learning and a predetermined schedule, while the Tempo Learning® format allows you to make progress at your own pace, on your own schedule.
Walden University is an accredited institution offering a suite of nursing programs, including a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN-BSN) Completion Program online. Expand your career options and earn your degree using a convenient, flexible learning platform that fits your busy life.
Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, www.hlcommission.org.
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