What are the Different Career Paths I Can Go into with a Degree in Nursing?

Nurse practitioner shrugging her arms
Nurse practitioner shrugging her arms

An online nursing degree can be surprisingly versatile and is likely to position you for numerous and varying job opportunities. Many of those opportunities involve caring for and supporting patients and their families, while others have a more indirect impact on patients but are equally necessary for an effective health care system.

If you’ve been thinking about pursuing a degree in nursing, now is a great time to pursuer it. Once you earn your degree, you can look forward to a career that offers personal growth, professional satisfaction and financial stability.

Nursing with Patient Care

Here are 25 nursing positions involving patient care that you could pursue with your online nursing degree:

  1. Physician’s Office Nurse: Work with patients directly.
  2. School Nurse: Work with children.
  3. Peri-Operative Nurse: Care for patients who are recovering from surgery.
  4. Radiology Nurse: Care for patients undergoing diagnostic imaging procedures.
  5. Transplant Nurse: Work with patients donating and receiving organs.
  6. Public Health Nurse: Work with at-risk populations and communities.
  7. Relief Nurse: Care for patients while providing coverage for nursing teams.
  8. Mental Health Nurse: Work with patients with psychiatric health concerns.
  9. Diabetes Nurse: Work with diabetes patients.
  10. Nurse Midwife: Work with mothers having babies before, during and after delivery.
  11. Learning Disabilities Nurse: Work with children and adults dealing with learning disabilities.
  12. Pediatric Nurse: Work with children and adolescents ages 0–19.
  13. Home Health Nurse: Work with patients inside their homes.
  14. Hospice Nurse: Provide end-of-life care to terminal patients while supporting their families.
  15. Surgery Nurse: Assist surgeons during procedures and care for patients during recovery.
  16. Emergency Room Nurse: Care for patients in an emergency room setting.
  17. Managed Care Nurse: Care for patients living with chronic or terminal conditions.
  18. Dermatological Nurse: Work with patients presenting skin conditions.
  19. Rehabilitation Nurse: Work with patients to regain mobility.
  20. Missionary Nurse: Spread God’s love and deliver healthcare to impoverished populations.
  21. Nurse Anesthetist: Assist surgeons and anesthesiologists during procedures.
  22. Health Visitor: Work with women who have had babies in the last two years to ensure the baby is developing properly.
  23. Health Coach: Support clients privately in their quest for optimal health.
  24. NICU Nurse: Work with sick and premature newborn babies in the neonatal intensive care unit.
  25. Peri-Anesthesia Nurse: Help patients as they come out of anesthesia.

Nursing without Patient Contact

Here are 10 examples of jobs you could pursue with a nursing degree that don’t involve patient contact:

  1. Nurse Lobbyist: Work with Congress to gain support for health care reform and funding.
  2. Federal Health Care Nurse: Work on federal healthcare programs.
  3. Bioterrorism Nurse: Conduct research on the development and behavior of pathogens.
  4. Legal Consultancy Nurse: Work on malpractice cases.
  5. Insurance Firm Nurse: Work on assessing insurance claims.
  6. Occupational Health Nurse: Ensure organizations offer mentally and physically safe work environments.
  7. Pharmaceutical Nurse: Work with drug companies.
  8. Health Administration Nurse: Work to influence healthcare policy.
  9. Nursing Facility Administrator: Manage administration in nursing facilities.
  10. Genetics Nurse: Research genes and their effects.

Nursing Specialities

As you take into consideration what kind of nursing specialty you might want to pursue, you can also think about the setting in which you want to work, day-to-day. Of course, hospitals and clinics are likely places you could find yourself, but you might also consider these environments:

  • Elementary, Middle and High Schools
  • Universities
  • Day, Overnight and Specialty Camps
  • Churches
  • Resorts and Cruise Ships
  • Nursing Care Facilities
  • Military Bases
  • Research Facilities
  • Prisons

An online nursing degree offers flexibility, versatility and job security. Employment of registered nurses is projected to grow 16 percent by 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. There’s never been a better time to take the next step to becoming a nurse, one of the most highly respected professions in America.