Nothing beats the feeling of accomplishment from achieving a milestone in life. Behind the exhilaration of the moment and the excitement over the possibilities that now lay open is the effort that went into the realization of your hard-won goal.
As you begin an online RN to BSN program, or if you are just considering it, take a moment to think about the accomplishment to come. There will be challenges, but persistence and hard work will pay off for you both personally and professionally.
The Professional Benefits
There are many professional benefits of a BSN, according to Nurse Journal. To begin with, there is a substantial difference in pay, with an ADN-prepared RN making an average of $69,000 a year and a BSN-prepared nurse making an average of $83,000, reports PayScale (March 2020).
Without a doubt, some of this difference in pay may be attributed to the greater career options with higher pay open to nurses with a BSN. On top of the clinical skills, you will gain the critical thinking and communication skills — and the required bachelor's degree — that will help you in graduate school and beyond if you should decide to pursue a career as a nurse practitioner, administrator or teacher.
A BSN is becoming a requirement for nursing jobs. For hospitals seeking Magnet recognition by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), the education level of their nurses is an important consideration when hiring. And of course, having a BSN makes you eligible to pursue specialties such as pediatrics, surgery, oncology and more.
Perhaps the greatest professional benefit is what it does for you in your practice. Extensive research shows that nurses who have a BSN have better outcomes with patients under their care. Their greater aptitude for making the right treatment choices means their patients have lower mortality rates.
The Personal Benefits
Aside from a sense of pride, there are other deeply personal benefits that come from earning your BSN.
Pursuing a BSN puts you into contact with other nurses across the United States, all at different stages of their careers, from different backgrounds — all as passionate about nursing as you are. The value of that sense of community can't be overstated. You have a lot to learn from, and share with, your fellow students, which will give you greater perspective in your own practice. And more importantly, you will know that you are not alone.
Applying yourself in an RN to BSN program may reignite your passion for learning. You can better hone your ability to synthesize new information, form opinions and express your newfound knowledge. The confidence this gives you can flow into your practice, making you a more capable professional.
The general studies courses — a requirement of the BSN degree — can make you a more well-rounded individual, empathetic and capable of critical thinking. Your instructors and your cohort will likely expand your knowledge base, deepening your appreciation for cultural differences and the individual journeys of those whom you treat.
The Benefits for Your Family
Completing an RN to BSN degree program on top of working and raising a family can seem daunting. But the long-term benefits outweigh the relatively short-term stress and strain. For sure, the professional benefits can put you in a better position to provide an improved life for your family, and there is no doubt that becoming a better you through the personal gains will likewise benefit those nearest and dearest to you.
There are still other ways your family benefits by your pursuit and completion of an RN to BSN program. The National Center for Education Statistics published a study that shows the positive impact a parent attending college has on their offspring. The children tackle more difficult courses in high school and are far more likely to go to college themselves. Children of parents with a bachelor's degree themselves go on to graduate with a bachelor's of their own 93% of the time.
As difficult as it can be to manage the current demands on your time, an online RN to BSN program like the one offered by the University of Maine Fort Kent puts the degree within your grasp. Designed with working nurses in mind, it is delivered online through seven week-long courses to suit anyone's schedule.
When you come to the end of the journey and reflect upon the hard work and dedication you put into earning your BSN, you'll look back on this moment and know you made the right decision.
Learn more about the UMFK online RN to BSN program.
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