Best cities for nursing opportunities

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    I am seriously considering relocation given limited nursing job opportunities in my current Midwest location. I am an experienced RN with an MSN. I've always wanted to relocate and my husband may consider if the opportunity/location offers significant IT opportunities for him as well (he is the primary breadwinner) making it worth moving our children and going through the trouble of selling our home We are considering greater Atlanta area as we already have friends there to help ease adjustment to a drastic move. Also considering Austin, TX and west coast (Portland area). Looking for real feedback regarding job markets in those areas as well as whether they are ideal for raising a family. Additionally is it an absolute to gain State licensure prior to applying for a bedside position in that state?
  2. 7 Comments so far...

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    Although Austin is a very pretty, clean, well-kept, hip city with a lot going on, I wouldn't relocate there as a nurse. It has the highest cost of living in Texas and some of the lowest nursing wages. Since masses of people have been relocating there, the local labor market has been flooded with nurses, so nursing wages are lower than what they really should be due to oversupply.

    I've been living about 150 miles north of Austin, in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, for the past 8 years. As an LVN in Fort Worth my highest wage was $27 hourly back in 2010 prior to earning my RN license, which is more than what many RNs in Austin are earning in 2014.
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    If you're looking for the most robust IT environment, it would be the DFW area - HQ for many international companies, so there are a lot of 'real' jobs with career potentitl as opposed to contractor positions. (source of information is my software engineer child) It also has less expensive housing & higher nursing salaries than Austin. I'm a die-hard Houstonian, so I don't even have a dog in this hunt.
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    Sorry - forgot to answer your second question.....

    Yes! You need to be 'eligible to work' in Tx before applying. If you have specialty expertise &/or management experience, employers may want to hire you very quickly!!! If you are in a compact state, this will not be a very difficult transition for you.
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    Anything but Chicago. Avoid Chicago like the plague...
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    Quote from Concerto_in_C
    Anything but Chicago. Avoid Chicago like the plague...
    More info please??
  8. 0
    Quote from skylark
    More info please??
    Although I'm not the poster who said to avoid Chicago, I know that the city has a glut of too many new nurses and not enough nursing jobs for every new grad who wants to work.
  9. 1
    Quote from skylark
    More info please??
    Local nursing glut. Too many nursing programs in the city, very few good jobs, large numbers of middle aged professionals lost their jobs in real estate, banking, finance, etc and entered the nursing colleges in the city, which are like 30 in number. It's ridiculously hard to find a job, but ridiculously easy to borrow money for college loans to get a BSN.

    Many of Chicago's hospitals have had several rounds of nurse layoffs which is pathological. In most areas of the country, nurses (esp. BSNs) are in very high demand. You don't lay off nurses, it's hard enough to find replacements because it's a high mobility profession, young people always running away to pursue better opportunities or to live in another state.

    The recovery from recession has been uneven throughout the country, while certain cities like Seattle or Phoenix or Houston have done great, other cities like Chicago and Las Vegas actually declined as the country was recovering.

    When a state/city is doing well (like Texas or Arizona) then middle class professionals move in, to work in the high tech industry and the like, which creates lots of opportunities for nurses as well...
    Last edit by Concerto_in_C on Feb 22
    TheCommuter likes this.


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