How to Become a Registered Nurse

Working as a registered nurse is a very fulfilling career. Nurses help people every day and get to be a part of patients’ recovery every step of the way. If you are interested in working in the medical field but aren’t too excited about the thought of attending school for several years, becoming a registered nurse would be a wise decision for you.

Earn Your Degree

As with many careers, the first step to landing a nursing job is to earn your degree. Some nurses earn an associate’s degree, and other’s earn a bachelor’s degree. Both paths will help you become a nurse, but with a bachelor’s degree, you may have more opportunities.

Your nursing program will include classes about human anatomy, biology, medical procedures, medications and first aid, among other topics. You will also participate in hands-on labs and may be required to do an internship or clinical before you can graduate.

Get Some Experience

The more experience you gain the easier it will become to launch your career. In a tough economy, employers look for candidates who have some experience in the industry. They like employees who can hit the ground running and who have experience they can draw from.

Look for internships and volunteer opportunities to help you build your experience. You may not be required to do an internship for your nursing program, but you may want to consider doing one anyway. Learning nursing procedures while on the job can be a very affective way of learning. If you aren’t able to do an internship, see if you can volunteer at your local hospital or a medical center.

Join an Association

Joining a nursing or health care professional association may be one of the best things you can do for your career. Of course, it is always great to connect with people who you can learn from, but these connections may also lead to a job some day. Networking is a very common way of landing jobs, and you can make a nursing association work for you if you go about it the right way.

Join a group and attend events and get to know the other members. Go to lunch with other professionals and connect with them outside the association. These actions will help you foster a strong relationship that may help you down the road.

Starting a nursing career can be a challenge, but it’s not impossible. There has always been, and likely always will be, a great demand for nurses. This field is full of opportunity and with these three tips you can get your career up and running in no time.

Jill Hardy writes for, a website that helps future students learn about all kinds of careers, from legal and business to art and medical careers.

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