3 Entry Level Nursing Career Options

3 Entry Level Nursing Career Options

Are you considering an entry level career in nursing? Nursing is a rewarding, in-demand and stimulating career option. It presents people looking for a steady job plentiful and diverse options of health care specialties and work environments.

Nursing tests you in building your:

  • Critical reasoning capabilities
  • Decision-making abilities
  • Collaboration & team development abilities
  • Creative thinking
  • Interpersonal communication abilities
  • Academic foundation
  • Proficiency in technical skill-sets & practices
  • Compassion

As a result of being a nurse you acquire the chance to create a positive impact in the life of every patient you treat.

There is a great demand for nurses in almost all health care workplaces with a job growth between 22 -26 percent and even higher for certain advanced nursing specialty roles according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

There really aren’t too many career that offer such good job stability, compensation, opportunity for growth, job satisfaction and the opportunity to directly make a big difference in lives of people.


Another benefit of nursing is that it’s relatively uncomplicated or inconvenient (compared to other healthcare professions) to get into. There are a few means to embark on your entry-level nursing career.

Entry Level Nursing Roles

To begin with, you will need to decide on one of three possible career entry positions – NA (Nursing Assistant), LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse), or RN (Registered Nurse).

Physical location, prior job experience, academic background, time of day/hours worked, and particular job role all influence wage amounts. It’s always smart to get in touch with potential employers for more information concerning a specific employment opportunity and its salary and benefits.

NA (Nursing Assistant)

Nursing Assistants aid patients using general care practice which can include washing, and clothing, administering food to patients and going for strolls with them. NA’s function under the primary oversight of an RN or a licensed practical nurse. Roles in nursing assisting necessitate the smallest degree of official education and training. This type of nurse has the chance to extend their qualification and increase their job opportunities by becoming a CNA or Certified Nursing Assistant. This certification requires taking a CNA training program, typically around 100 hours, and successfully passing the CNA certification test.

LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse)

LPNs are licensed on the state level. The LPN takes part in firsthand and secondary basic nursing care, health services, educating, counseling, arranging, and rehabilitation the level of which is determined by their work experience. In order to be a Licensed Practical Nurse you are required to finish a LPN program, usually 1-year to 18 months at the community college or a career institution level, followed by meeting specific competencies on the NCLEX-PN (National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses). The National Council of State Boards of Nursing, which regulates the exam, has reported a pass rate of 84% (January to March 2013) for U.S. students taking the exam for the first time.

RN (Registered Nurse)

Also licensed according to individual state nursing board standards, Registered Nurses form, carry out, review, and adjust strategies of care for patients and families which entails the organization and handling of resources used in the distribution and delivery of health care services. This type of nurse functions to manage patients’ return to health or offer comfort and dignity for their dying patients. To be eligible for RN licensure you can either complete an Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN) degree program (2-years) or a 4-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program. Both degree pathways permit you to sit for the NCLEX-RN (National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses). However, a BSN degree provides you much more occupational versatility and career advancement. The NCSBN reports a pass rate of 90% for first-time U.S. educated students taking the exam thus far in 2013.