When people think of nursing, they often picture bedside nursing, where a registered nurse works with multiple patients in a medical facility. However, this isn’t the only career option for current and aspiring nurses.
What can you do with a BSN? The answer spans a broad field with diverse opportunities.
The following careers are just seven options.
1. Nurse Educator
Nurse educators instruct aspiring nurses in classroom and clinical settings alike. They work in teaching hospitals as well as nursing schools. Most nurse educators work in nursing departments at four-year colleges, universities, community colleges, and technical schools. They create curricula with their colleagues and deans.
Other job duties include
- Giving lectures to undergraduate and graduate students
- Assigning homework and projects
- Grading assignments
Many nurse educators pursue the career because it provides an opportunity to work closely with students and advise them about their career paths.
People who want to become nurse educators should earn at least a BSN. They should also gain experience working as a registered nurse, which will help them prepare students for what to expect on the job.
Nurse educators earn a median annual salary of $74,600, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The job outlook is promising, as the BLS projects the employment of these professionals to grow by 13% between 2019 and 2029 — faster than the average for all careers (4%).
2. Health Policy Nurse
Another option for what to do with a BSN is become a health policy nurse. These nurses play a role in creating healthcare policies that impact nursing and public health. They work alongside policymakers in the government and healthcare organizations to improve aspects of healthcare. Making healthcare more accessible and effective is an essential aspect of a health policy nurse’s role.
Aspiring health policy nurses should enroll in a BSN degree program where they can develop their leadership skills and knowledge about public health. They should begin their careers as registered nurses so they can get hands-on experience in the field. With practical experience, they gain firsthand knowledge of what patients need and what issues affect healthcare workers.
According to the BLS, registered nurses who work in government positions earn a median annual salary of $79,790. The bureau projects the employment of RNs in government to grow by 7% between 2019 and 2029.
3. Nurse Recruiter
Nurse recruiters help recruit aspiring licensed practical nurses, registered nurses, or nursing students for positions in the field. Nurse recruiter duties include
- Posting advertisements
- Attending job fairs
- Conducting interviews
- Connecting qualified applicants with appropriate programs
Nurse recruiter and nurse educator roles intertwine. According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, “U.S. nursing schools turned away 80,407 qualified applications from baccalaureate and graduate nursing programs in 2019 due to an insufficient number of faculty.” When more nurse educators step into positions in the field, nurse recruiters can encourage more prospective students to apply for programs and thereby help address the nursing shortage.
Nurse recruiters must hold a BSN degree and may need licensure. The BLS places nurse recruiters in the category of human resources specialists, who earn a median annual salary of $61,920. The projected employment growth of HR specialists is 7% between 2019 and 2029.