Hi all! I have a bit of problem and a site full of nurses seems to be the best place to look for advice. I'm a 30 year old male from Canada currently working in the law enforcement field (special constable) and I'm considering going back to school to get a degree in Nursing (I currently have an Advanced B.A.). I have a full time job making $45,000/year CDN with a great pension plan and good benefits but I would have to give it all up if I decided to go back to school for 3-4 years. As you can see, this is a big decision for me.
I hear that nurses are in high demand all over the world and the pay is very good (not that I'm in it for the money). My mom is currently a nurse and my dad is retired from nursing (he was the first male nurse to graduate from his hospital and finished his career in the administration side of nursing).
The shiftwork I am doing now is sucking the life out of me and I don't know if I want to work another job that involves shiftwork (although, the time off is great: 4 days on, 4 days off). How demanding of a career is nursing? I've been reading some of the posts here and people are talking about stress and politics and management not backing up their nurses, but I guess you will get politics and garbage like that in any job.
Anyway, I just wanted to get some feedback from any of you to see if nursing is as rewarding as people say it is. Also, how easy/hard is it to specialize in certain fields of nursing? Is there a lot of room for lateral and upward mobility?
Any thoughts or comments would be greatly appreciated.
Sorry for the long post and thanks for taking the time to read all of it. Feel free to drop me an email with any thoughts you might have. Maybe we could even chat about nursing on AIM/ICQ or MSN one day. Thanks and take care!
Jan 7, '03
I worked at a small not-for-profit community hospital in Charlottesville, Virginia, and one of my colleagues was a former police officer. He's now a senior dialysis R.N. and is very happy with his career change I believe because the flexibility and income is better. He said he made nearly $80,000 last year, which is incredible for the central Virginia cost of living, but I know that was for a lot of overtime; I think he worked an average of 55 hours a week. He maintains that many of the qualities that make a good police officer are the same as those that make a good nurse -- judgment, attention to detail, ability to work with a wild range of personality types and dispositions. You may especially like emergency or psychiatric medicine, as there's often a significant forensic component to those specialty areas. The neat thing about nursing is that if you don't like your work in one capacity, there are a million others in which to specialize. I don't think there's a more flexible profession out there.
Hope this helps!
Last edit by Woodchuck on Jan 7, '03