With the healthcare industry booming, are you worried that recent nursing grads are leaving you behind? Did the Institute of Medicine’s call for 80% of nurses to have a BSN by the year 2020 motivate you to consider going back to school? Since 2002, the percentage of nurses graduating with a BSN has increased from 45% to almost 59% today, and more importantly, healthcare organizations are increasingly requiring a BSN for job vacancies. For nurses who have yet to earn a BSN, there is often unnecessary trepidation about being able to go back to school while still working full-time. Fortunately, the efforts to increase the BSN workforce have included streamlining nursing programs to accommodate working students. Here are a few tips for earning your BSN while still working as a nurse full-time.
- Understand what a BSN focuses on. Data has shown improved quality of care when administered by a BSN over a RN. The goals for today’s RN to BSN programs are to provide nurses with intermediate and advanced skills and technical proficiencies allowing them to treat a wider array of patients. BSN programs also focus on leadership, communication, critical thinking and other skills that foster greater levels of collaboration within a nursing team.
- Know what is required to get into a BSN program. While each program contains specific requirements, generally a RN will need the following to gain access to a BSN program:
- Nursing License
- Criminal Background Check: Some RN to BSN programs require the passing of a criminal background check, physical exam, or drug screening.
- Exams: Some programs require prospective students to complete the Elsevier’s HESI Admission Assessment (A2).
- Miscellaneous: Varies by program, but some require a GPA of 2.0 or higher, completion of a personal essay, and transcripts.
No matter what your preference is for the educational setting or length, the most important decision you will make is determining which program is right for you. In researching different programs, always make sure that program accreditation is a top priority. Another benefit to choosing an accredited program is that you may be eligible for scholarships and more federal student aid.
Supplemental Health Care is an employer who understands the educational investment you have made to become a healthcare professional. We also want to help you advance your career to achieve whatever personal and professional goals you have set for yourself. Contact one of our recruitment professionals today, and learn about how we can help you find your perfect nursing or allied opportunity.