Have you ever wondered what you could do with an advanced nursing degree in Pennsylvania? After all, your experience as a registered nurse has likely made you a valuable source of information and care for your community. Furthermore, your time working in a medical setting may have exposed you to some of the specialties in the field of nursing.
One of the fastest growing options for Bachelor’s-level nurses who want to return to school is public health. Health care is growing in Pennsylvania, and more and more employers are relying on nursing professionals to provide affordable care. By delving into the field of public health through an organization like the Pennsylvania Department of Health, you can influence health on a community-wide level. Keep reading to explore public health graduate programs in Pennsylvania.
You may have to meet an extensive set of admissions requirements to be considered for a place in a public health nursing program. This is because nurses in this position have a great deal of responsibility, so schools want to ensure that they accept students who are ready for this challenge. While earning your Bachelor’s degree in nursing, you should have maintained a GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Some schools even limit their consideration to students with a GPA of 3.5 or higher. The type and amount of nursing experience you have also plays a role. One year is typically the bare minimum, but you may well need more to be accepted.
Preparing for the rigors of graduate-level nursing study can give you every chance you need to succeed in this program. To prepare, look at the curriculum for the course you have chosen. Some of the classes you may take include Nursing Research and Its Applications to Practice, Epidemiology, Public Health Nursing Theory, Public Health Nursing Practice, Public Health Nursing Leadership, and Population-Based Nursing Theories & Interventions. These courses and their clinical counterparts should prepare you for the many duties assigned to public health nurses.
Use every tool you have at your disposal to find out about nursing scholarships in Pennsylvania. One of the largest nursing organizations in this state is the Nursing Foundation of Pennsylvania, which awards scholarships that are worth $2000 each.
Growth in the nursing industry of Pennsylvania may mean that this is a great time to spread your wings and get certified in public health. O*Net reports an expected 18% increase in nursing jobs between 2012 and 2022. Since public health nursing requires an advanced degree, you may have a more positive job outlook than those with undergraduate degrees. Although the average salary for a Pennsylvania registered nurse is $65,100 per year, you may earn more with your advanced education and certification.
When you begin your career, you may find that you get to work in many different settings. While you should spend some time in the community, you must also be willing to spend plenty of time analyzing research and preparing press releases, data, and news reports. For example, public health nurses contributed to a recent discovery that Pennsylvania residents who live near fracking sites tend to get sick more often than those who do not.
Take the first step in your new career today by contacting public health nursing programs in Pennsylvania.