Scientific advances in medicine make it necessary for healthcare workers to seek continuing education in order to advance in their desired fields. Those who hold a Bachelor’s degree in nursing often return to the classroom to earn a Master’s degree. But that path is often very expensive and time consuming.
Accelerated MSN Programs
As advances in medicine are made the number of qualified nurses available for patient care continues to decline. While the popularity of choosing a career in nursing is quite high, it takes many years for students to reach the higher degrees of education necessary to practice medicine today. Many accredited universities offer fast-track bachelors or masters programs in nursing and medical science that are designed to shorten the gap between beginning the program and graduation. By cutting away the need for basic classes that nursing students may have taken elsewhere, students graduate sooner and gain much needed experience to succeed.
An accelerated Masters of Science in Nursing (MSN), or accelerated MSN programs, is the perfect curriculum for a student with a degree in a filed other than nursing. Also known as Direct Entry MSN, these programs provide a quicker route to licensure. There are several programs options to choose from, and students interested in pursuing an MSN are encouraged to research the options available by their state and university. Accelerated MSN programs can lead students to licensure in a number of specialties. These accelerated MSN programs are often rigorous and competitive, encouraging students to use their unique educational backgrounds and embrace leadership opportunities during their studies.
As previously mentioned, students do not need to possess a bachelors level degree in nursing. While accelerated bachelors level nursing programs do exist, choosing a post-graduate program offers many more benefits to students. Credit is given to students who took general science or education classes prior to program admittance. Since students who enter the program are not required to have a bachelor’s level degree, the first semester of an accelerated MSN program focuses on the basics of the undergraduate degree. When entering into accelerated MSN programs, students are considered graduate students, and remain so until they obtain Masters degrees.
Much will be expected of incoming students to accelerated MSN programs, although a bachelor’s degree is not. Interested students will need to demonstrate the following:
A GPA of 3.0 or higher
A through interview process
Ability to succeed in a demanding environment
Demonstration of ability to succeed at a senior university or college level
Completing accelerated MSN programs is challenging for many students. Administrators must be able to identify students who will thrive in these programs. Students who are unable to submit to the workload often drop out of the program or continue their studies in a slower-paced program.
What to Expect from Accelerated MSN Programs
Typical accelerated MSN programs take about three years to complete. Interested students are encouraged to research MSN programs offered by universities in the state in which they live. The workload of these programs can be quite intensive, and students must be able to manage their time efficiently to complete all required course material. Students will need to be able to devote a large amount of time to completing course work, and are encouraged not to work while enrolled in accelerated MSN programs. Students should expect a rigorous, competitive and fast-paced course from these programs. Licensure is available upon completion.
Upon graduating and entering the workforce, accelerated MSN students are sought for their proficiency and distinguishing professional attitude. Since students for such programs have been chosen because of their ability to thrive in such demanding environments, they are valued by faculty and future employers. Graduates of accelerated MSN programs have demonstrated through their ability to complete the course a dedication to professionalism and patient advocacy. Graduates of these accelerated MSN programs tend to be older than general entry-level nursing students, possessing a sense of maturity and commitment to learning unique to their character.
After Graduation from Accelerated MSN Programs
Since direct entry programs are designed to launch students into nursing careers, they can enter the workforce or continue their education in other areas. Depending on their specialty and licensure, the pay for a graduate with a MSN varies anywhere from $58,000 to $66,000 a year or more. Work schedule is varied according to the institutions at which MSN graduates are employed. Hospitals will have rotating shifts, while family physician offices and schools will cater to regular business hours. The pathways obtaining an MSN clears are only limited to the student’s imagination.
For anyone with an interest in nursing but does not have an educational background in healthcare, an accelerated MSN may be the perfect way to enter into an exciting medical career. As the healthcare industry expands, choosing a career in nursing is an outstanding way to embark on a fulfilling career.