It takes a lot of work to get into the medical industry. School, clinicals, exams, and the work hardly stops after graduation. Most registered nurses are filtered out of the classroom and into a life of arduous twelve shifts, some of which take place at night.
It’s hard to imagine any nurse chomping at the bit to complicate their lives even further. And yet a very compelling case can be made for why nurses should consider continuing their education to advance their careers.
DNP Online Programs
DNP online programs are an accessible way for nurses to grow in their understanding of their profession while still maintaining a professional schedule. Online classes typically benefit from an enhanced level of flexibility, making it easier to manage coursework even during a nurse’s infamously arduous twelve-hour shift schedules.
Online DNP courses are just as educational as their brick-and-mortar counterparts, giving students access to a high-caliber education that can boost their financial prospects while also allowing them to grow in their profession.
A DNP course-load can be completed in its entirety over five semesters and can be made available in flexible 8 or 16-week increments making the classes as accessible as possible to busy professionals.
Career mobility isn’t quite the same in medicine as it is in other professions. Typically, there is no corporate ladder to climb. Advancement opportunities are rare and quite gradual.
DNPs have more opportunities available to them. In addition to being able to take on more responsibilities and leadership positions within hospitals, DNPs may also be able to perform more responsibilities with patients than their RN counterparts, giving them more options in what direction to take their careers.
As with most continuing education endeavors, A DNP rewards its recipients with a higher salary. Actual numbers will vary depending on a DNPs placement, as well as what stage of their career they are in. However, it is not uncommon for DNPs to earn almost five figures more than nurses who only have a master’s degree.
Incorporate the fact that nurses have been experiencing a steady increase in income thanks to shortages and a general rising demand for healthcare workers, and it becomes clear that a DNP has the potential to be very lucrative indeed.
Of course, there is also just a degree of pedigree that comes naturally included with any advanced degree. Nurses considering their DNP should note that it is among the very highest educational distinctions in their line of work.
There are in fact, only several doctoral-level certifications that nurses can pursue. Of them, the DNP is the most deeply rooted in the actual practice of medicine, making it the perfect choice for people who want to continue their education without assuming the professorial role that post-graduate degrees often inevitably lead to.
Improved Patient Outcomes
Every nurse wants their patients to do well. Furthering your education is among the best and most sure-fire ways to improve patient outcomes. In fact, continued education is destined to be part of every medical provider’s life at some point. Remaining certified tends to require educational hours and periodic evaluations.
Pursuing a DNP simply takes something that every nurse is already doing anyway into the next level. When it comes to patient health, it’s a worthwhile pursuit. Even very talented healthcare providers will inevitably struggle to stay up to date with new developments and techniques as they focus on family and their careers.
DNP coursework allows nurses to pursue high levels of learning in a structured environment, studying at the knees of certified, experienced professionals.
Working towards a DNP is also a great way to network. The program itself will feature a high concentration of local professionals working within the world of nursing. Having contacts at other hospitals and practitioners’ offices can be a great way to further your career options and pivot quickly into a new opportunity should the need arise.
Doctoral-level educational programs also often serve as an opportunity to connect with other professions that are related to your own. For example, a DNP candidate might find themselves meeting people in hospital administration.
Ironically, a DNP could also serve as a way out of traditional nursing and into the world of academics. Nurses with a doctorate are both qualified and highly sought after to assume a role as an educator. While you may not wish to pursue this path immediately, it can be a dependable alternative to nursing should you ever find yourself interested in a change in career paths.
No Time Like the Present
Nurses are in high demand right now. Salaries and benefits are soaring, opportunities, increasing everywhere. Now is a great time to capitalize on the surge in demand. With an advanced degree, you can further improve your marketability and take full advantage of this unprecedented demand for nurses.