It’s National Nurses Week, and like many others this week, we’re thankful for this in-demand profession. I’ve recognized the importance of nurses many times in my life, such as when I had appendicitis and had to be rushed to the hospital to take out my appendix before finals my junior year of college.

Since then, the number of nurses has grown, with the projections that more than 2.9 million registered nurses will be employed in 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Our recent story notes that “making a difference” is probably one of the most popular reasons why people get into the nursing profession.

Probably the most recognized nurse was Florence Nightingale, whose birthday is May 12, now known as Nurses Day, which is celebrated across the world.

Why? She was the founder of trained nursing as a profession. In the 1850s, she learned about nursing at the Institution of Protestant Deaconesses at Kaiserswerth, Germany, then a decade later, she established the Nightingale School for Nurses at St. Thomas’s Hospital.

Although the need exists for people to follow in the footsteps of Florence Nightingale, we wanted to give you an idea of what it takes to give birth to a career in nursing.

You can plan to get a three-year RN degree, but you may need to be prepared to earn a bachelor of science degree, which groups such as the American Association of Colleges of Nursing recognizes as the minimum educational requirement for professional nurses.

You may need to use patience – a skill you’ll need to have when helping patients as well – when pursuing getting admitted to schools. The AACN found that nearly two-thirds of nursing schools that responded to a 2009 survey cited faculty shortage as the reason for not accepting more applicants.

If the idea of being a nurse gets your blood pumping, it’s worth researching the nursing profession, and this annual week devoted to nurses is a perfect time to do it.

-Lori Johnston

46 responses to “Nurses Week Turns Attention to a Caring Profession”

  1. Good to see that you have shown some attention on the nurses jobs. Just when the US recession seems to have settling down. Greece went into severe debt. I wonder how can we create more opportunities now !

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