At Joyce, we believe a baccalaureate education is so important to nursing that we created an online RN-BSN degree completion program as a compliment to our well-known associate degree pre-licensure program. As the Future of Nursing report and other studies have demonstrated, earning your BSN degree makes you a better nurse and better prepared for the changing world of healthcare. It also opens up many more career doors. While many specialties require a master’s degree, there are many that don’t. These are five of the top nursing specialties you can pursue as soon as you earn your BSN degree.
One of the primary reasons nurses decide to earn their BSN degree is to become eligible for nursing management positions. For RNs who have worked for many years and want to advance their career, nurse manager is a wonderful specialty. As a manager, you have more authority and a more powerful voice for leading others into the future of nursing. A BSN degree prepares nurses for leadership, and specializing in nurse management gives you the authority to direct other nurses, recruit and retain staff, and occasionally collaborate with doctors about patient care. It’s important work, which is why it requires a baccalaureate education.
Related Resource: The Lesser-Known Benefits of Being a Nurse Manager
All nurses advocate on behalf of their patients in some way, but the nurse advocate specialty is often a role devoted to advocating between patients and providers. This role is especially important when the patients have unique preferences, circumstances, or beliefs that may conflict with a doctor’s wishes. As a nurse advocate, you need to remain current on legislation and policy as they relate to patient rights and health. You also need to have particular strengths in empathy and creativity, since you may often find yourself collaborating with providers to find alternative treatments for individuals.
A small but competitive specialty, a nurse informaticist deals with the data and statistics that every hospital and health clinic generates. It’s like nursing IT. You work with information technology as it relates to patient care and efficiency in healthcare systems. Informatics nurses can work in an array of healthcare settings, but their goal is always the same: improve patient outcomes by assembling and interpreting healthcare data.
Related Resource: 5 Reasons You Need Your BSN Degree
Many nurses enter the healthcare field after watching a family member or loved one suffer, and cancer is an illness that affects many if not all of us. As an oncology nurse, you provide care, counseling, and treatments like chemotherapy to cancer patients or patients with a high risk of developing cancer. Because the disease affects so many people and comes in so many different forms, the work is always different, and always rewarding.
Also known as surgical nurse or operating room nurse, there are many names for this rather famous nursing specialty that works with patients before, during, and after surgery. As a perioperative nurse, you’ll work alongside surgeons as a critical part of the surgery team by maintaining a sterile operating room, all the while being client-facing. You will be a patient’s primary point of contact as they prepare for a surgery, and you’ll meet with them and their family afterward, outlining recovery tips and care. For that reason it can be incredibly rewarding work, and fulfilling. Many of the fictional nurses you see on television and movies work as surgical nurses, and once you earn your BSN degree, you can count yourself among them.
Ready for a career upgrade? Learn more about our online RN-BSN degree completion program.