7 Reasons to Pursue Your RN to BSN
According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), the number of nurses holding a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is at an all-time high. For the first time in history, nurses with a BSN make up over 70% of the U.S. workforce.
So why are nurses beginning to prioritize a higher level of education? And what makes the BSN worth it? Let’s take a look.
1. High Employer Demand
A study done by the AACN found that 71.7% of employers expressed a strong preference for nurses with a BSN, and 41% of healthcare employers actually require nurses to have completed a bachelor’s degree or higher level of education. They also found that 76% of students with a BSN had a job offer by the time of graduation. Interestingly, this is a higher employment percentage than both Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) and Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) graduates.
2. Higher Earning Potential
Nurses with a BSN have two distinct advantages when it comes to leveraging salary:
- High demand from employers means higher salary from the start.
- Having a more comprehensive education allows you to work in higher-paying specialty areas.
But what is the actual salary difference for those with and without a BSN? According to Payscale, the average salary for those with a BSN is around $91,000, while those with an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) earn around $75,000. That’s a pretty hefty difference!
3. Improved Patient Outcomes
One of the reasons that employers view BSNs so favorably is that they’re often linked with better patient outcomes. An Institute of Medicine (IOM) report found that a 10% increase in nurses with a BSN led to a 4-5% decrease in patient deaths. Several studies spanning multiple countries have concluded that a higher number of BSNs was associated most strongly with lower surgical patient mortality, including post-surgical complication care. This was attributed to a more comprehensive technical foundation as well as a higher level of communication skills.
4. Leadership Positions
If you’re looking for leadership positions, a BSN can help you prepare and get ahead of the competition. Management positions include roles like patient care director, nursing supervisor, lead charge nurse, chief nursing officer and more.
Not interested in a management-level position? Academia might be your calling. Many nurses with BSNs go into education, working in environments ranging from teaching hospitals and nursing schools to four-year universities and technical schools.
5. Positive Work/Life/School Balance
It’s fairly common for working RNs to go back to school for their BSN without taking time off from their jobs. This means that RN to BSN programs must take into account the professional and personal lives of their students—resulting in flexible degree paths that work with your schedule. It’s also common for employers to provide tuition reimbursement for nurses who want to go back to school, making it both an affordable and attainable option.
6. Positive Future Outlook
In 2010, the AACN released an initiative that recommended 80% of RNs have BSNs by the year 2020. Clearly, the U.S. did not hit the target, but significant progress was made. The need for nurses with BSNs has become a national priority, and healthcare providers are striving to meet the goals set out by the AACN, even if it takes longer. This means a promising, high-demand future for nurses with a BSN.
7. It’s Achievable!
At UTEP, we strive for maximum flexibility and affordability. Our RN to BSN program is 100% online, meaning that you can work at your own pace without sacrificing your job or personal life. The program was designed for working nurses and can be completed in as few as 12 months, so that you can start reaping the benefits as soon as possible. We’ve also got a world-class faculty, led by Dr. Janise Tinsman, who recently gave a helpful interview on the difference between an RN and BSN.
Check out our program page to see if our online RN to BSN might be right for you. Find student testimonials course lists and any other information you may need. And don’t be afraid to reach out! Our enrollment counselors are here to help you with any questions you may have.