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Nursing Continues to Offer Many Job Opportunities

One of the great things about nursing is the variety of options that are available. There are part-time positions, graveyard shifts, and opportunities to work in different departments in a hospital. Other specialties allow you to work primarily with children, with seniors or with certain ailments. Let’s face it: the possibilities are endless for students getting health care career training.

The Las Vegas Review Journal highlighted this topic and had great examples about how many people are changing their career paths by furthering their education. One example is as follows: “Back in 2002, Bob Bassett was working as a retail store manager in Elko when the business went bankrupt. He looked for work at large companies in the area that seemed like a sure thing, such as Walmart, Pepsi and Dolly Madison, but there just wasn’t much there. Finally he decided to entirely change direction and get his associate’s degree in nursing — a different kind of customer service, you might say. One may look at becoming a nurse with a bachelors of science degree.

“He worked on the medical/surgical floor of Northeastern Nevada Regional Hospital in Elko for a year and went on to get his bachelor’s degree. Then the opportunity came to work in case management, coordinating care for patients. He did that for five years before taking a new position as the hospital’s infection-prevention specialist a few months ago.

“Now Bassett, who is 50, runs a one-man department writing infectious disease prevention policy for the hospital in a job that allows him to be ‘an instrument for change and an advocate for patients,’ he said.”

Depending on your specialty, one great thing about nursing is that it focuses on your skill and education levels, not just your age. Nursing also allows you to change assignments within the medical field if you think that you would be suited better in a different department. The article explains, “Unlike a lot of fields, nursing provides the opportunity to change direction. It can come in the form of additional on-site training, continuing education, advanced degrees or by taking the initiative at the workplace in a profession with both varying specialties and the continual need to adapt to advancements in medical care.”

Nursing provides endless options and great potential for growth. If you are in a Bay Area nursing school, carefully consider every area of study and opportunity to see where your passion and skills line up. The old saying still holds true: If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.

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Nurses Have Lower Job Turnovers

One of my aunts has worked at a children’s hospital for almost 30 years. Before retiring, my other aunt worked as a nurse in a dialysis clinic for over 20 years. My husband is working at a detention facility as an LVN for almost ten years. These seem like pretty impressive numbers to me; a lot of people I know switch jobs every few years due to layoffs, better opportunities or they just don’t like their job or company. So what makes nursing different? What can an Vocational Nursing student expect when he or she enters the job market?

There is an article written on by David Ruth that discusses a new study that was published by Rice University, the University of Pittsburgh and Baylor College of Medicine. Ruth explains that, “In a comprehensive study of certified nursing assistants, researchers found that attitudinal factors such as job satisfaction and emotional well-being are better predictors of turnover in long-term care facilities.”

Now I know that this study focused on nursing assistants working in long term care facilities, but I think there are some valid points to why people in general choose to stay at a company or facility for a long amount of time. Although money is unarguably an important factor, there are many more reasons why people develop job loyalty.

“Mittal and his co-authors identified three distinct groups among the 620 certified nursing assistants they studied: stayers, who were in the same job for the same organization a year after they were first surveyed; switchers, who continued to work at least 30 hours per week as certified nursing assistants but for a different organization a year after they were first surveyed; and leavers, who were no longer in the direct-care industry or left the workforce entirely… Switchers were similar to stayers in terms of job factors, such as the amount of paid leave and health insurance they received, but differed from them in terms of key attitudinal factors and reported greater emotional distress, lower job satisfaction and less respect for their supervisor. The switchers reported positive outcomes — lower emotional stress and greater job satisfaction after switching jobs — even when switching resulted in lower pay. Job satisfaction remained unchanged for stayers.”

Aren’t these factors that we all look for when determining where we want to work: benefits, positive environment, manageable stress, job satisfaction and a great boss?

As a student in an LVN program in the San Francisco Bay Area, it’s never too early to think about where you would like to work. Keep these standards in mind and you’ll find a job you’ll love.

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