Pros and Cons of military nursing

Specialties Government


Hello All!

I am currently a ADN graduate working on my BSN and was thinking of joining the military after graduation (if accepted). I am really interested in hearing from current military nurses on how they perceive their work. More or less are you happy with the choice you have made or do you like civilian nursing is better? I should be graduating with my BSN in fall of 2013 and am leaning more towards the Navy or Air Force but I would like to hear from any branch of the services. Please let me know if you have had any civilian nursing experience and when you were in the military.

Thank you!

Specializes in critical care: trauma/oncology/burns.

Hello Sunshine:

There is a plethora of advice and information on this particular forum...Take a few hours (smile) and take a gander. Then if you have a specific question someone will be better able to address your comments, concerns, or questions

As you may know the current operational tempo is winding down in Afghanistan and the collective Armed Services are downsizing...Hopefully, by the time you obtain your BSN you and others will know exactly where the nation stands and numbers in regards to retention in the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard (also the reserve side of the house)

Best of luck to you



I worked both sides civ & military. I never regretted going Army after civ life. You cannot beat your work experience in the military. Respect among your peers and taking care of the best patients in the world... you can't put that into words.

Airforce has some nice bases and the family situation tends to be different some say better... arguably. But, I would not go back and change my mind and go AF or Navy.

Promotion rate now is pretty much the same now within the services I think.

Its a big decision, I would say join up for 3 - 4 years and try it out. Try it out while your young and if you like it you can retire in your 40's. If not then you can get out and still live out your career in the civ life with the fact that you can look back and never regret not trying it.

good luck

Specializes in ED. ICU, PICU, infection prevention, aeromedical e.

I will put the question back on you: Why are you interested in being in the military? There are good things about being a civilian nurse and good things being in the military. Bad things in both too. What is it you want out of being a nurse?

Hey thanks for the feedback I am mainly interested in the Military because I really enjoy traveling and my father was a Marine so I have somewhat of a military background. Recently I have become a little bit jaded about nursing in the traditional sense and the bureaucracy that gets in the way of actually taking care of patients. I really want to nurse, specifically trauma, and I feel like in the military you have more of an opportunity to do that. I know that saying that I have issues with bureaucracy and thinking about joining the military sounds a little backwards but I feel that in the military health care is about health care. Also if I did enjoy it I might be about to further my education.

So if you all have any further opinions please feel free to share them with me :)

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