Why Become a Nurse in New Jersey?
That the United States is facing a nursing shortage is nothing new. The media, health care providers and legislators have been talking about the deficit of nurses for years, and while it’s getting better in some places, this is not the case everywhere. In New Jersey, the state Department of Labor and Workforce Development projects a need for 3,000 new registered nurses between 2014–2024 — and that’s just the short term.
So how is it that there’s a shortage of nurses in a country where nurses make good money? (According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for registered nurses in New Jersey is $82,010.) To understand this, we have to look at the root causes of the shortage, namely three factors:
- An aging population — Not only is the Baby Boomer generation the largest in history, Boomers are also living longer than previous generations, and this translates to additional health care needs.
- Expanded access to health care — In New Jersey and across the nation, the U.S. Census Bureau reports that the number of Americans with health insurance has been increasing for years. As insurance rates continue to grow, so too does demand for health care services and providers.
- Growing health care needs — It’s no secret that chronic conditions — including cancer, diabetes, heart disease and obesity — are on the rise, despite countless public health recommendations to increase physical activity and eat healthier. As a result, Americans are seeing their health care providers more often and requiring more care.
Developing Nurses for the 21st Century
Nurses play a critical role in the delivery of health care. As doctors, faced with increased demands on their time, are able to devote less of their attention to individual patients, nurses find themselves picking up the slack. The result is that nurses are taking on more leadership roles, as well as playing the increasingly important role of patient advocate.
Felician University is committed to producing nurses who are prepared to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing health care landscape and to provide exceptional patient care. With our Accelerated BSN program, you’ll learn from experienced nursing faculty who are devoted to helping you become the best nurse you can be and develop a thorough understanding of the impact of societal issues and vulnerable populations on our health system.
Is Nursing Right for You?
Nursing is more than just a career, and that’s why it takes a special kind of person. Here are five traits you need to be a great nurse:
- Compassion — You may have heard it before, but nursing is an act of the heart. Seeing people during the best and worst times of their lives requires tremendous compassion and strength. If you don’t love helping people, the nursing profession will get old fast.
- Patience — You’ll meet a lot of different people working as a nurse. Some of them (or their family members) will test your patience. They may even question your knowledge. In these cases, it’s important to remember what they’re going through, and to exude patience and calm.
- Attention to Details — Nursing is a detail-oriented profession if there ever was one. Whether checking vitals, monitoring a patient’s status or carrying out a doctor’s orders, it is critical that you are attentive to details.
- Calm Under Pressure — Working in the medical profession, anything can happen. A patient’s condition can change in a moment, an emergency room can be calm one minute and hectic the next, etc. As a nurse, you must be able to act (and think) clearly and calmly in even the most stressful situations.
- Great Communication Skills — As a nurse, you’ll coordinate care with other providers, explain crucial details to patients who may be nervous or even illiterate, and chart critical information. This necessitates clear communication skills.
Is nursing for you? Contact us to find out how you can use your existing college experience to earn a BSN degree in as few as 16 months.