Nurse Scientist?


Hi. I am a new RN grad and am still trying to figure out what type of nursing job I would love. I really did not like med/surg while I was in clinicals, and even though I know it's a good idea to start there, I think I'd be MISERABLE and I just don't think it's worth it. However there also isn't any other area of nursing that I am really attracted to at this point. The little experience I do have is with addictions, and I just don't think I'll be happy in this area for very long.

I *loved* the science classes that I took...especially microbiology and biochemistry. Does anyone have ideas for jobs in which I could work as an RN but work in a lab-type setting? I know there are Nurse Researchers, but are they doing more research design and paper writing and less of the really interesting stuff (hands-on with the microscope)?

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!


allnurses Guide

llg, PhD, RN

13,469 Posts

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 46 years experience.

I think your observations are pretty much on track with reality. The people who actually do the technical, laboratory, "bench work" are rarely nurses. They are lab techs or people with degrees in the basic sciences such as biology, etc. Even if a nurse researcher chooses to do research on some highly technical topic, the time spent actually doing technical things is just a portion of the time spent at work.

If none of the nursing specialties appeal to you, maybe you should consider going to graduate school in a non-nursing field.

Though, I wouldn't jump to that conclusion quickly. There are lots of different types of nursing out there -- and you don't have to work adult med/surg if you don't want to. I started out in NICU ... and then went into Professional Development.


3 Posts

Hello sunny,

I agree with llg Guide, you might want to try grad school. Masters of public health with a focus in epidemiology. I feel the same as I am not really interested in bedside nursing and may want to go into research.

Hope this helps,