I am a male nurse. My wife is also a nurse. My first degree is in Business Administration. She studied Nursing from the onset. She has a BSN. Mine was an ADN. We both went back and got our MS in Nursing. She makes more than I do. She works in a Trauma ICU. Her manager hires quite a few men. Why? They usually can lift more, they are less prone to getting hurt by less than cooperative patients/visitors, and other reasons. I worked at a different hospital. I had also been a Nursing Supervisor (which my wife has not). We were both successful, both having certifications, and both moved to the highest notch on our clinical ladders. Now the hard part: Saying what I believe without insulting people. 1) Most male nurses focus on the important things in nursing care during report. Many of my female counterparts focus too much on little things during report that really have little to do with what is needed to take care of the patient. They go into a frenzy when the patient's sheets are not tucked in properly, or the activity board is not up to date. When I had a male person on the opposite shift, we'd go into the room together, take VS, update the activity board, talk with the patient, then go on to the next room. In 8 years on one unit, I never had a female nurse do this. Even when I tried, they'd say "let the tech to the VS", "why isn't the board updated", etc. 2) Male nurses can generally lift more, turn more. Not all hospitals have turn teams or equipment to lift and turn patients. 3) Most male nurses seem to like to help the other nurses more (my wife would tell you this too).
As far as pay: As I mentioned, my wife makes about $5/hr more than I do. She's been a nurse for almost 35 years now, me about 30. We are nonunion. When we left a state, one of my male nursing coworkers said, "Remember, all things are negotiable. They may tell you you get paid a certain amount for years of experience, etc, but if they want you, they'll find a way to get you more." How true. We went to a hospital that started every one as a Clin 1, with a Step equal to the number of years of experience you had. Each step was a little more money. The Clin 3 (out of 5) were part of each units' decision-making team. We both negotiated to be Clin 3s (it was tough, but it can be done).
Finally, should males be enticed into nursing programs? Personally, I think criteria should be made, and all references of gender, race, age, etc should be removed from the application. Diversity is great, but it shouldn't be obtained by decreasing obstacles for the minorities applying. You run the risk of not letting in a person who is better qualified. Do we really want that in a profession that is there to save and better the lives of seriously sick people? I don't think so. I want the best nurses taking care of me as a patient, whether she's black, white, male or female.
Sorry this is so long. I look forward to replies.