My wife is graduating as a BSN on Sunday. Recently a friend told me a low number like that so I started searching. Finding reliable data has been difficult, but I finally found data that is updated quarterly by the National Association of Colleges and Employers which stated the average starting pay for a graduating nurse is $52,800 as of April this year. While they do sell more detailed products, that gives me some peace of mind that if that was broken down it's slightly over $1,000/week $25+/hr (if averaged at 40 hours a week) and it has gone up about $600/yr from their last report. This same source was quoted on CNN.com and this is specific to 4-year grads.
From the public (free) report:
While engineering students are the highest-paid, students
majoring in the health sciences saw the largest overall
increase to their average starting salaries, which bumped
up 9.4 percent to $49,713. Fueling the increase was
not only the fact that nursing salaries rose 4.3 percent to
, but also that general health sciences majors
salaries rose nearly 20 percent to $45,200.
Data source: http://www.naceweb.org/uploadedFiles...ve-summary.pdf