Nursing Career Options (Things You Can Do with a Nursing Degree)

Asked to describe a nurse’s role, the average person likely thinks of a nurse providing bedside care in a hospital. While bedside nursing is a valuable role in healthcare, it’s neither the only role nor location where nurses are making a difference.

Nurses work in most every industry. In addition to acute care nursing, nurses are needed in mental health, public health, and private duty nursing. Some nurses are needed to analyze data for quality control or in informatics.  With advanced degrees, nurses can serve in healthcare administration, higher education, or advanced practice nursing, like nurse practitioners.

Here are just a few of the roles that you can do with a nursing degree:

Travel Nurse – If you are open to working in different parts of the country or world, travel nursing might be for you.  Travel nurses are contracted with for temporary nursing positions at understaffed healthcare settings.  These roles can be filled by someone with an associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing.

Clinical Research Nursing – A clinical research nurse works for medical research studies. They advocate for the safety of their patients, ensure compliance with all research protocols, and secure consent from patients for treatments and collection of data. A bachelor’s degree and experience in clinical nursing is usually required for this position.

Nurse Anesthetist – One of the most important members of the surgical team is the nurse anesthetist, which requires an advanced degree and at least one year of critical care experience.  Nurse anesthetists administer general or regional anesthesia to patients about to undergo a surgical procedure, so they can feel little to no discomfort during the duration of the procedure.

Nurse Practitioner – A nurse practitioner is a nurse with a graduate degree in advanced practice nursing. They are trained to assess patient needs, order and interpret diagnostic tests, establish treatment plans, and prescribe medications as needed.

Nurse Educator – A nurse educator is a nurse with an advanced degree that teaches student nurses, provides continuing education for nursing staff, or teaches patients in clinical care settings.

Nursing Faculty – For those interested in higher education, there are many career paths in nursing. To be an instructor requires at least a master’s degree, but a doctoral degree is required to become a full professor or an academic dean.

Carlow University has a number of degrees available that can put you on the path to the career you want. You can make an impact with a nursing degree from Carlow. To learn more, please visit us on the web at or give Admissions a call at (412) 578-6059.

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