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Is it worth it to obtain a masters in nursing education?

Posted

Specializes in Agency, ortho, tele, med surg, icu, er. Has 5 years experience.

Hello all, well I am starting to look at rn to msn online degrees and recently sent my transcripts to walden university online. I have always been interested in teaching and a 3 year online program for rn to msn in education seems like just what Im looking for.

My background is with agency, tele float, and general float, and now a position with a Caritas facility on a med/surg ortho floor. In about a year they are opening a level 1 trauma center (er) and I am looking at transfering to it once it opens for the experience.

Now Ive been a nurse for 5 years so far, and a cna for 7 years before that. my current pay is close to 75000 a year (5 11-7 a week) and since Im at a union hospital it will only increase.

Ive done some research and it seems like Ill be making more money a year within the next 4 years than I will with my masters in nursing education... and I dont have to pay any college loans off.

I know this is rather long, but for those who have obtained a masters in nursing education is it worth it? Honestly? Im also wondering about typical 20 year retirement if I stay at the same college to teach, and also looking at those summers off... are they really off? Or do you have committees and so forth to attend none stop? (I could work agency to bump my income in the summer and keep my clinical skills active) And also do colleges in general provide free education to a child if you are a professor?

I know this is a bit but I have a lot of thinking to do concerning this. Any answers greatly appriciated

Be_Moore

Specializes in Pulmonary, MICU. Has 5 years experience.

Financially? No way. Teachers don't teach for the money. ;) If you really desire to teach, plus desire the more normal person hours it will work out for you. But don't have any dreams about making as much money teaching as you would as an acute care nurse in a hospital.

ER2Ed

Specializes in Emergency.

Well...the scoop is you won't start out making $75,000 a year. More like a base salary of $45,000 - $55,000, maybe $65,000 if you are in an area that appreciates the need for good nursing instructors at a community college with an MSN. You don't have to have an MSN in education it can be as an NP also which would give you the flexibility to earn more money if you picked up extra time outside of teaching rather than just nursing as an RN.

Summer's are really off if that is what your contract states - I've been off since May 1st and go back the last week of August. I have heard that there are a few colleges that require instructors to teach over the Summer. I am only required to report for duty 3 times during the Summer for advising, but you will want to review the contract before you accept a job to find out all the little details. Also have a month off over the Christmas and New Year break, the Thanksgiving Holiday and the Spring Break Week. That's quite a bit of time off. First semester is the hardest, after that you get your "groove" on and are able to streamline your class preps and it becomes much less stressful. The trick is to not keep switching the courses you teach so you don't have to keep starting from scratch every semester (learned that the hard way!). I did the MSN in education and went into teaching - going into my third year as a faculty member and up for tenure in the Spring. You can pick up extra classes and do classes over the Summer which they call teachign over "load" - this will boost your income and usually, if you go on to get your PHD or DNP you get another extra couple of thousands per year. Committee work is expected, but is often difficult for nursing faculty, especially if you teach clinics. At our college, nursing instructors are required to teach at least one 7 week clinic in addition to the didactic classes they teach - but we usually teach two 7 week sections - clinics pay the most money. The weekly schedule goes like this - 5 hours a week of "office hours", you get to chose when they are so you are available to students, one lecture (about 4 hours), and two days of clinic - so a typical work week is 3 days. HOWEVER, class prep time, grading papers, answering emails and all of that stuff also needs to be done - but I don't go into the office for that.

For me personally, I feel the MSN in education actually prepared me to venture into the world of acadamia, whereas, those with an NP masters often struggle with the concepts of the curriculum development, syllabus construction and the tangled web of higher education. A Masters with a focus on education allowed me to hit the ground running...I am now finishing up my Post masters as and FNP so I can also pick up extra money over the summer and other breaks working. About tuition for your children - yes, it's true, where I work, my children (up to 25), spouse and myself can attend any classes at the college for free (of course but pay for their books and incidental expenses) and I imagine it's like that for most.

Hope that helps!

Sirapples

Specializes in Agency, ortho, tele, med surg, icu, er. Has 5 years experience.

thanks for the info. You would think with one of the bottlenecks in the "nursing shortage" being the long lists of appicants to nursing school, that someone who teaches nursing on a masters level in college would get paid more.

65000 starting for a masters is nothing especially when you consider the loan payments.

Ill look into it further. Thier is also nurse educator at hospitals as well. I have to see exactly how much it may cost me in loans to get my rn to msn.

Otessa, BSN, RN

Has 19 years experience.

Good for you in investigating this thoroughly! I made more in a hospital setting but we moved to a different state and I now work in a clinic system as an educator. I have 3 more classes to complete at Walden University for my MSN in education. I will most likely continue my clinic job (salaried,M-F, no weekends, nights, holidays, or overtime). It will be nice to have options in the future, if needed. There have been furloughs in the colleges around here due to budget constraints. I have to say I feel more secure in the job I currently have.

Good luck in your decision!

otessa

Make sure the online college is fully accredited... not all of them are and you could waste your money

An MA in nursing will provide better job security since you will qualify for all sorts of positions that don't go away as quickly as BS or AS degree equivalent positions do when the economy gets rough.

As another poster said, you don't go into teaching for the money.

:)

RNmb

Has 1 years experience.

Keep in mind also that I don't believe Walden is accredited. I could be wrong about that, but that's what I have heard. So you might want to check into that before starting something long term that would require your school to be accredited.

maxthecat

Has 27 years experience.

Also keep in mind that more and more schools are mandating nursing faculty to have doctorates, not just masters degree.

Stopping at the masters level may mean you are only eligible to teach clinicals--for less money.

interleukin

Specializes in Mixed Level-1 ICU. Has 14 years experience.

In Western Mass, you start at about 48K/yr with Masters.

No such thing as 65K salary, perhaps in Boston.

Sad part, get your Phd and you only get 2K more. Typical of nursing's low work/pay expectations in education.

Otessa, BSN, RN

Has 19 years experience.

Keep in mind also that I don't believe Walden is accredited. I could be wrong about that, but that's what I have heard. So you might want to check into that before starting something long term that would require your school to be accredited.

It is accredited. http://www.waldenu.edu

otessa

Ginger's Mom, MSN, RN

Has 41 years experience.

Make sure the online college is fully accredited... not all of them are and you could waste your money

An MA in nursing will provide better job security since you will qualify for all sorts of positions that don't go away as quickly as BS or AS degree equivalent positions do when the economy gets rough.

As another poster said, you don't go into teaching for the money.

:)

A MA in nursing is pretty useless. The majority of US schools give MSNs and that is what employers are looking for. I have also found in my nursing career, the MSN jobs such as clinical specialists and some management positions are the first to go.

I am basing this on my nursing career unlike some posters here who have never worked as a nurse.

Does anyone who is a community college instructor pick up one day a week at a hospital to up your earnings?

Does anyone who is a community college instructor pick up one day a week at a hospital to up your earnings?

When I was teaching full-time in a CC ADN program, I also worked two afternoons a week in a clinical position, but I was doing it primarily to maintain/develop my advanced practice clinical expertise. (I didn't really make much money doing it.)

Moogie

Specializes in Gerontology, nursing education.

There are online programs that are far less expensive than Walden or some of the other proprietary, private schools. Most state universities offer either a MS or MSN in nursing education and, as per the trends toward online education, many offer online options either in addition to or in lieu of traditional classroom learning.

PM me if you want some additional information.

Is it possible to get a part time hospital job which you could take off a month in the summer? Or can one work part time doing agency work and specify that you want to have the summer off?

I am interested in working at a community college and picking up a weekend shift every week but traveling abroad in the summer. Is that possible?

Is it possible to get a part time hospital job which you could take off a month in the summer? Or can one work part time doing agency work and specify that you want to have the summer off?

I am interested in working at a community college and picking up a weekend shift every week but traveling abroad in the summer. Is that possible?

If you work on a prn basis (through a hospital "prn pool" or through a staffing agency), you can just tell your employer that you're not available during the time you want to travel. The trade-off, though, is that you're not guaranteed a set number of hours or a particular schedule when you want to be working.

Do you think that if one lives in a large city like Atlanta that one can find a hospital that would agree to giving a nurse August off every year? Can I find a hospital that really needs weekend nurses that might agree to give me a month off every year?

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