One of the best ways to advance your career in nursing in the state of California as a BSN or RN is to get your Master of Science in Nursing (MSN).
According to the latest survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of registered nurses is projected to grow 16 percent from 2014 to 2024. Nurses are in high demand and now, more than ever, is a good time to enter the field and get an advanced degree.
One of the most popular ways among nurses who get their MSN in California is to enter an accelerated BSN to MSN program. These programs allow students to earn a BSN in 15 months or less, then (or in some cases at the same time) begin their MSN degree right away. These programs allow students to get their degrees faster, while still getting the same coursework and hands-on experience as a full time program. Consider a BSN to MSN program if you want to accelerate your path to more career opportunities in the healthcare field.
Nursing Trends and Career Statistics
While the nation as a whole is in demand of nurses, the state of California is in demand of nurses to a point where it is almost considered a crisis. According to the Center for California Health Workforce Studies at UCSF, by 2030 most of Northern and Central California will not have the nurses to fill 30 percent of RN positions, Los Angeles will need enough RNs to fill 20,000 full-time-equivalent vacancies, and the state’s Northernmost counties will lack 40 percent of the registered nurses they need. Source
One of the reasons for this shortage is that the number of newly licensed nurses can – t keep up with the amount of nurses in California that are retiring. According to the American Nursing Association, nearly 700,000 nurses are projected to retire or leave the labor force by 2024 in the United States. The population of retiring nurses that is expected in California is specifically high compared to the rest of the U.S.
The opportunity to secure a job in California right out of a graduate degree program is incredibly promising. In May 2016, California had the second highest employment level of Registered Nurses in the country just behind New York. In fact, salaries reflect this demand in that California was the top paying state for Registered Nurse salaries at a median of $124,330, with the top paying area of California being San Francisco. Source.
As a result of the shortage of nurses in California, many nurses are seeing that by returning to school to get their advanced nursing degrees, such as BSNs and MSNs, they are able to expand their job horizons and get higher paying jobs in more specialized roles. As more nurses graduate with advanced degrees, the imbalance in California is hopeful to shift.
Popular BSN to MSN Programs in California
University of San Francisco
Ranked No. 6 on U.S. News – 2016 list of top graduate schools for clinical nurse leader programs, The University of San Francisco Nursing School’s Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is designed for RNs to gain an advanced degree by developing experience in patient care plans and best practices within the healthcare field. The program is focused mainly on preparing students on becoming Clinical Nurse Leaders (CNL) and generally takes two years to complete.
RNs with a BSN will need 35 credits to graduate and RNs with an ADN are required to have 46 credits to graduate. In order to be accepted into the program, students must complete an online application, have an undergraduate nursing degree (ADN or BSN) from an accredited institution, present unofficial transcripts from all colleges and institutions attended, have a GPA of 3.0 or higher, submit a personal statement, a professional resume, have an active RN License, and two letters of recommendation.
California State University Long Beach
The Master of Science degree (MSN) at California State University Long Beach School of Nursing is for students seeking an advanced degree to become Nurse Practitioners or Nursing and Healthcare Systems Executive Managers. Upon graduation, students will be ready to assume high-level roles hospitals, healthcare systems, and other complex settings. Students may also achieve certificates in specializations including Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Geriatric Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner.
Cal State LA
The California State University at Los Angeles School of Nursing is an accredited school with more than 400 undergraduate students and 200 graduate students. The Masters of Science in Nursing program is designed to prepare students for leadership positions in nursing and other healthcare roles.
Advanced practice specializations within the MSN program include Nursing Education and four Nurse Practitioner options: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AGACNP). In order to be considered as an applicant, you must submit an official transcript, be a licensed Registered Nurse, and have an RN License. In addition, you must have three professional recommendations and complete an official application.
Careers for MSN Graduates in California
Nurses have one of the most in-demand jobs in California, let alone the country. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, RNs made a median annual wage of $68,450 in May 2016, with the highest 10 percent earning more than $102,990. * Nurses that hold an MSN degree in particular have a variety of options when it comes to career choices.
Nurse Educator: In the simplest terms, a nurse educator is responsible for preparing and mentoring aspiring nurses about patient care. Their job is to teach class using lectures or clinical/lab work and develop curriculum for their students. They guide and mentor students through various degree programs. The job of a nurse educator is incredibly important as these individuals shape the nursing workforce and prepare them for the ever-changing healthcare field.
Nurse educators may teach at different levels, however at the college and university level they typically hold master degrees, such as an MSN, and doctoral degrees. According to the latest survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, California ranked number one in highest paying salary for nursing educators at an annual mean wage of $105,030. Source.
Nurse Administrator: Also called healthcare executives and health services managers, nurse administrators plan, direct, and coordinate health and medical services. A nurse administrator’s role various depending on location, department, and specialization, however, no matter the circumstance, they interact with many different parties such as lab techs, registered nurses, and physicians and surgeons.
They may even interact with patients or insurance agents. While their roles vary, some may include training and supervising staff, develop and monitor budgets, prepare department goals and objectives, and improve efficiency and quality of healthcare services. According to the latest survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for medical and health services managers was $96,540 in May 2016, with the highest 10 percent earning more than $172,240. *
Certified Midwife: A midwife is a trained nurse that helps women during labor, delivery, and after the birth of their babies either at home or in the hospital. In addition to childbirth, Certified Midwives may provide prenatal and postnatal care, education on family planning, and GYN exams. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean salary for a nurse midwife in California is more than $132,950. Source.
Everybody will need to take the first step to try and attain that career goal which is completing your BSN to MSN program. From there, you will be able to start looking at all career options available in California.