So a lot of you are wondering what your compensation will be following nursing school. I can't speak for each state but in Texas, nurses are paid very well, combine that with an unrelenting passion and proficient skills set, it's money in the bank. (BTW I didn't go to school for grammar and I'm notorious for extra commas)
So, where I started working right out of school in July 2017 nurses are paid 24.25 an hour, I started in an ICU. I don't count the full year of 2017 since I was a tech making 11.70 an hour for more than half a year and by the end of the year without OT I made 45000.
In 2018 however, my first two checks were >5000 after taxes. How?
Well, my base was 24.25, my hospital gives $1.00 raise every six months for the ~3 years for residents plus your annual increase. So after six months, I was making 26 something. I work nights so that is automatically and extra 3.25 per hour for the first four hours of your shift and then an extra 4 per hours for the next 8. So right off the bat, I was making at ~30 an hours. I worked weekends so my job gives another 6.50 an hour for weekends, so guess what? I worked on weekends. So just for my differentials + base, I was averaging 36 an hour for 36 hours a week. There is always overtime and I only picked up when they offered 10 dollar bonus, which means they tack on another 10 an hour on top of my base, differentials and time and 1/2. I picked up an extra 1-3 shifts a week and for holidays they automatically pay time and 1/2. When you are in overtime and already getting paid time and a 1/2, plus holiday pay + base + differentials + bonus, that's money in the bank because you are getting double base pay plus everything else.
Although, I will disclose I had no children and no pets so I was only obligated to myself and my bills lmao. If you have a family or other familial responsibilities it can be difficult unless you have a dedicated partner or support system whom/who are sympathetic to your financial goals. Also, some people love nursing and some people find out it is not for them, I am definitely one of those people who absolutely love my team (physicians, RTs, fellow nurses, social workers, administration, NPs, just everyone) and my profession. I had people who were willing to teach (nurses who were/are 30+ years in the game) as well as a younger nurse who knew the new tricks of the trade. I was never unsafe, for instance, I inquired with my manager about all my OT shifts and she agreed to cancel me if I didn't feel rested enough to work because I was doing the hospital a favor. Your environment has a lot to do with your work satisfaction. I don't mean to rant BTW I'm just telling you all my truth. I never felt burned out and took a 2 1/2 to almost full month vacation every 3 months. I've been to Germany twice, Hawaii, traveled to various parts of the country. Now that I have an extensive skill set, I travel but I still keep my job at my first hospital. I probably will never leave haha
I never imagined making almost 6 figures as a brand new nurse and if I can do it, so can you!