BSN-MBA advice


Hi everyone, I want to start out saying that, as a novice nurse, I'm realizing that bedside nursing is not what I see myself doing forever. I have about one year of experience at a rehabilitation hospital and recently, secured a staff nurse position on a rehab floor of a hospital. That's not to say that I hate the profession, I've loved the science and pathophysiology of it all, and enjoyed researching EBP topics during my BSN. Sure it was all tough, but the content was enjoyable.

That being said, I'm looking for the next step, and I'm finding that it's been hard to consider what I might do since I only have a general vagueness for the roles and responsibilities of other healthcare positions filled by unit managers, supervisors, administrators, officers and directors. I understand any of these would require additional school and experience, but I just don't have the foundational understanding of what these positions entitle.

I've been playing with the idea of pursuing an MBA, which I understand would be a lot more business oriented, but I can't conceptualize what a person with a BSN-MBA would do, and what positions would be available to them. I also have minimal nursing experience and no leadership or managerial experience. I wonder if I should wait to have more of both before I even try to advance my degree. I'm attracted to the broadness of an MBA not limiting me to just the hospital setting, but I worry I won't enjoy the rigors of a business centered curriculum or work place; or maybe I'll love it. I know that an MSN degree is also an option, but I don't think I would mind stepping away from the nursing side of things.

I have plenty of time, I'm not married, I don't have children, and my job will pay for a significant amount of the tuition of the degree I choose. I really just want to move forward, but so much of what's in front of me feels obscure. I plan to research the job descriptions I'm not familiar with and reach out to my office of employee advancement at work to possibly speak with those in leadership about what they do and what is required for their position.

I'm interested to know what this online community has to say about hospital organizational structure. I also have many questions about the direction I should take with grad school. What can be accomplished with a BSN-MBA degree? What roles would a MBA degree open up as opposed to an MSN, and vice versa? Is it best to gain RN and leadership experience before attempting to pursue a higher degree? I would appreciate any advice! Thanks!


Ruby Vee, BSN

67 Articles; 14,022 Posts

Specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching. Has 40 years experience.

As stated in your other thread, an MSN with a leadership focus or an MSN/MBA combination will be more marketable than an MBA by itself. That said, I'd encourage you to figure out what you want to do before embarking on a course of study that will cost you time, money and energy and potentially not advance your objectives. In order to figure out how to advance your objectives, you need to first figure out what you want those objectives to be. "Away from the bedside" is not really a career goal in and of itself. With only a year in, you're still a novice nurse. It takes two years or so to become competent. Since you've changed jobs already, it will probably take you longer -- you're starting all over again. Use that time to get to know nurses in some other roles, pick their brains about their jobs and figure out where you want to go from here. THEN start looking for a graduate school program.