Becoming a nurse for the money...

  1. ...just wondering who's becoming a nurse for the eventual excellent pay???
    I am.
  2. Visit Marc86 profile page

    About Marc86

    Joined: Jun '09; Posts: 15; Likes: 5

    180 Comments

  3. by   mommy.19
    I do have to say I feel there is absolutely nothing wrong with factoring the pay into your career decision. I would be lying if that was not a reason I considered the healthcare field. I do know people that don't quite have my "omg I want to do nothing but be a nurse" attitude that are very competent and safe nurses. But I do feel that long-term, you'll be dissapointed and may get burnt out pretty quickly if you don't have a genuine interest in nursing. I mean, MRI physicists make over 500,000/yr but I'm not exactly hopping on that train . Just my .
    Last edit by mommy.19 on Jun 8, '09
  4. by   TheCommuter
    You are probably going to catch some flack and criticism in the responses that follow, because many people remain convinced that people need to enter the nursing profession only if they were "called" to this line of work by some higher power. I'm assured that some would scream, "You shouldn't be worried about the pay!"

    Well, I am certainly no angel of mercy. I feel that if a person is competent, skilled, able to engage in critical thought, reasonably intelligent, and capable of bringing a sense of caring to one's patients, then it is nobody's business if the person entered nursing for the money.

    It is strange that we don't seem to belittle doctors, lawyers, accountants, therapists, scientists, engineers, and other educated professionals for entering their respective career pathways for monetary reasons.

    The bottom line is that I do not work for free!
  5. by   llg
    I take a middle ground view of that debate. We all deserve to be reasonably paid for the work that we do. However, if you don't have some basic interest in doing nursing work, you will be very unhappy in your job -- and we spend too much of our lives at work to spend it doing things we don't enjoy or "believe in."

    I wasn't "called" to nursing by some higher power or religious beliefs. However, using my talents to help people is consistent with my personal philosophy. I wouldn't be happy with my life if I were to spend it making no meaningful contribution to society. For example, I would not be satisfied if I spent my day making or selling a product I believed was harmful to society.

    So ... I had mixed motives. I chose nursing many years ago because it was one career (among many possibities) that involved making a positive contribution to society -- AND because of practical reasons such as career flexibility that were important to me. The money is generally OK but not great.
  6. by   Silverdragon102
    Yes money is a factor but there also should be feeling and compassion for the profession
  7. by   Lovely_RN
    The pay is excellent? I don't care why a person decides to become a nurse and I also don't work for free but I gotta break it to you. You're going to be pretty mad when you finally graduate, get your first job, and find out that the pay really isn't excellent for all that you do and are responsible for. If you are looking for a career solely based on the income why don't you pick something that pays better than nursing w/o all of the responsibility?
  8. by   Marc86
    I already have a BA in Communications, and a minor in creative writing. I have great people skills and am academically competent. I live in California's Bay Area which is one of the top paying regions for RNs. Yes, i know i will have a few years that aren't so glamorous. But after the first years, i'm sure everything will be alright. I know nurses that are making low 100,000 a year after working only ONE years in a long term care facility, then moving on to a hospital. So yes, the first few years might be a bit "dirty" but after that, getting into a area of interest will become enjoyable. Also, i would love to be a doctor or a lawyer, but that takes time. I'm all about the instant gratification, and right now about 3 years in nursing school are as instant as they get for sooner than later 100,000+ salary range.
  9. by   Lovely_RN
    I'm not discouraging you and I have almost the identical credentials that you have (freaky coincidence isn't it?). I'm just letting you know that as long as your at the bedside it's going to be dirty work no matter how many years you have under your belt. To get away from the bedside (the dirty work) it's going to require more education and you will also need experience to get that promotion. At the end of the day it's 6 of one half a dozen of another. People think that nursing is the fast track to a good income and job stability and it doesn't work quite that way. Trust me there are no shortcuts in life and no one is paying anyone big bucks to do an easy job. If nurses are making good money in your area it's because they can't fill the positions for less not because the employers feel altruistic. If they could pay a monkey minimum wage to do our jobs they would...trust me you will be making what you make for a reason. It's because the job is demanding and stressful. YOU WILL WORK for every nickely you earn and if you think other wise you are just fooling yourself.

    However, I think that experience is the best teacher and there is no use trying to explain it to people who think they have it all figured out. Welcome to the profession and enjoy your journey!
    Last edit by Lovely_RN on Jun 8, '09
  10. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from Marc86
    I live in California's Bay Area which is one of the top paying regions for RNs.
    The Bay Area is also a very problematic region of the country if you actually want to find a job as an RN. There are not enough RN jobs in that area for everyone who would like to work. Some people have been searching for years for an RN position without luck. Click on the link to read the thread below. The respondents live and work in the Bay Area.

    https://allnurses.com/california-nur...ow-371409.html
    https://allnurses.com/california-nur...ea-272530.html
    Last edit by TheCommuter on Jun 8, '09 : Reason: added a sentence
  11. by   CBsMommy
    This is a kind of slippery slope right now. If you do not like the work that a nurse does, while you may get paid well, you will also be miserable. I worked in the mortgage industry for many years prior to this journey of nursing and made over $100K a year for a lot of those years. I hate it and I mean HATE it! Quite frankly, it isn't worth the pay. It's constant drama, drama, drama. I've always said they should make a reality show out of mortgage. Anyway, I think I would rather make $50,000/year and live in a smaller house but enjoy my life more. Also, keep in mind that the money might not always be there. If the government does a reform of healthcare, workers may be capped in their pay.
  12. by   Marc86
    Quote from TheCommuter
    The Bay Area is also a very problematic region of the country if you actually want to find a job as an RN. There are not enough RN jobs in that area for everyone who would like to work. Some people have been searching for years for an RN position without luck. Click on the link to read the thread below. The respondents live and work in the Bay Area.

    https://allnurses.com/california-nur...ow-371409.html
    https://allnurses.com/california-nur...ea-272530.html


    I don't quite understand why people say that the Bay Area is a problematic region. I am personally speaking for San Francisco. I have many friends in nursing and they all started working as RN's within a couple of months. With the Oakland Childrens hospital expanding, the new UCSF Childrens, tons of new positions will open up. Also, those respondents who say they live in the Bay Area must not be competent to follow up on interviews or applications submitted. Hiring managers in hospitals are too busy, some are nurses! So they have to be reminded!! So to say, "some people have been searching for years" is a bit too much. If they dont have any "connections" to get the foot in the door at hospitals (luckily i do) they can work in hospices, long term care, nursing homes, etc. to get the "experience" many hospitals say they are looking for. To get a job one must be persistent.
  13. by   Marc86
    Oh, and the pharmaceutical companies will NEVER allow the USA to socialize medicine. They are far too rich and powerful. So that is out of the question.
  14. by   hiddencatRN
    Quote from llg
    So ... I had mixed motives. I chose nursing many years ago because it was one career (among many possibities) that involved making a positive contribution to society -- AND because of practical reasons such as career flexibility that were important to me. The money is generally OK but not great.

    I agree with everything you said. I want a career where I'll be helping people, where I'll have a usable skill to make measurable and tangible improvements in people's lives. I also happen to like science a lot, and wanted to be able to work where I live, not live where I work. But of course my timing is pretty bad for that now, as I'll graduate next September if I stay with my current school choice.

    To Marc86- good luck to you. I hope everything goes as smoothly for you as you expect it to. When one person can't find a job, it's likely due to their attractiveness as an employee. When a significant number of people can't find jobs, it's usually an indicator of a bad job market.

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