If you want to become a nurse, but are hesitant to commit to more years in college, rest assured that nursing schools have heard the call. Today, non-nurses with a bachelor’s degree have the option to pursue a second degree in nursing, which can be completed in just a matter of months.
Years ago, you may have jumped into college quickly, pursued that traditional four-year degree, only to find that the nursing field is now calling you. This is completely normal. Research shows that about one-third of college graduates never end up working within their original major – many pursue other passion areas and career paths, instead. Nursing is one of the more common career changes. According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, more than 23,350 students were enrolled in second degree nursing programs in 2018.
A second bachelor’s in nursing (also called a second degree BSN or accelerated BSN) is a great choice for those who wish to make a difference in the medical field, without spending years in nursing school. Now, more than ever, the world needs qualified nurses—to help fight against COVID-19, as well as other emerging concerns, and to treat the aging baby boomer population. Will you join the nursing force?
If you are considering going back to school to earn a second bachelor’s degree in nursing, here are five reasons to take that first step.
- You can earn your BSN degree fast.
As noted above, a second bachelor’s in nursing is commonly referred to as an “accelerated BSN” or “ABSN” degree. This is because second degree nursing programs are much faster than your standard associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing. For example, at Goodwin University, students can obtain their second bachelor’s in nursing in as few as 16 months full-time. (In comparison, a traditional bachelor’s degree program can take up to four years to complete.) This fast-track format allows aspiring nurses to narrow in on a career they love, and get into the workforce fast.
- Second degree nursing programs are accessible.
Going back to school is a big decision, especially if you are already working or have obligations at home. How will you take classes and take the kids to school? How will you maintain your job while balancing clinicals? These are questions that have likely come to your mind. It is important to know that a second bachelor’s in nursing is designed to be flexible. While coursework will be comprehensive and intensive (due to the accelerated format), you can rest assured that it will work with your schedule.
At Goodwin, we’re all about tailoring your coursework to your individual needs. The ABSN classes and clinical requirements, for example, are offered on both days and evenings. Online courses are also available within this program, so that you can combine both hands-on and online learning to meet your scheduling needs. Additionally, for those concerned with cost, you will know the full price of the ABSN program tuition – start to finish – before you begin classes. Earning a second degree should not take over your life or your wallet, which is why we work to make it as accessible as possible for you.
- You will take the most valuable nursing courses.
When enrolling in a second degree program, you may have concerns about spending time in classes that you’ve already taken, or in broad, core courses that don’t fully apply to your major. With a second degree in nursing, you will only take the valuable, career-focused courses that pertain to the nursing field. Upon entering the program, you can expect to dive right into the fundamental nursing coursework, lab experiences, and eventually, clinical rotations.
The accelerated BSN courses at Goodwin are comprised of science and nursing topics. Examples of classes you can find within this program include:
- Lifespan Development
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Health Assessment and Skills Development
- Mental Health Nursing
- Pharmacology for Nurses
- Nursing Research
- The Wellness Continuum (for Adults, Women, Children, Newborns, and Families)
- Your prior education counts!
You’ve already earned a bachelor’s degree once, and that will be taken into consideration upon entering a second degree nursing program. In fact, your prior education can be used to your advantage. Accelerated BSN program students have the opportunity to finish their nursing degree fast because they already have credits built from their prior college. At Goodwin University, students entering the second degree nursing program are automatically awarded 38 credits in recognition of their first bachelor’s degree.
- Nurses are in high demand, and there is opportunity to grow.
One of the top reasons to pursue a second bachelor’s in nursing – and to become a Registered Nurse at all – is for opportunity ahead. Nurses are in greater demand than ever before, and job opportunities are plentiful for those who are qualified. After the completion of your second degree BSN, you will be eligible to pursue your license as a Registered Nurse (RN), which is granted by passing the NCLEX-RN examination, and land a job in the field.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Registered Nurses who have a bachelor’s degree in nursing (BSN) will “have better job prospects than those without one.” In addition, RNs with a bachelor’s degree tend to qualify for more, and more advanced, positions in the field. By earning your second bachelor’s in nursing, you can be eligible to fulfill advanced roles in schools, the military, case management, informatics, clinical research, and more. With a BSN, you may also qualify for more leadership roles within nursing down the road.
If you are considering becoming a nurse, but already have a bachelor’s degree in a different field, there are flexible options for you. With job opportunities reaching record-highs, now is the time to fulfill the nursing career of your dreams. A second degree nursing program, like the accelerated nursing degree at Goodwin, can get you there in just a matter of months. Call us at 800-889-3282 to learn more.
Goodwin University is a nonprofit institution of higher education and is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), formerly known as the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Goodwin University was founded in 1999, with the goal of serving a diverse student population with career-focused degree programs that lead to strong employment outcomes.