The Advantage Of An ADN Degree

By Hedrick Lepsch

You have decided you want a career in nursing, but where do you start? There are so many options for degrees and certifications-LVN, ADN, BSN etc. How can you decide if it's best to get an associate degree in nursing or a bachelor of science in nursing? The following are three advantages to getting your ADN nursing degree: it is more cost effective, less time consuming and starting pay is about the same in both programs.

As a nurse, you can transfer your nursing skills anywhere within the healthcare field and work in a variety of atmospheres such as clinics, hospitals, insurance companies, schools, and more. You'll always have a job because nursing is virtually recession proof and you'll also receive great medical and dental benefits. This list is certainly not limited, many nurses love seeing their patients recover, knowing that they were a part of that healing process. It is not a career for the faint of heart, but there is always a need for them.

As mentioned previously, an ADN program is only two years long. There are even accelerated programs for those who already have their bachelor degrees. The lesser time commitment is ideal for those who work full time and can only go to school at night or on the weekends. Instead of keeping up that schedule for four plus years, you will have your schooling completed in two. Less time also means you will be able to start earning an income as a nurse sooner than if you were to be enrolled in a longer program. If, in a few years you decide you want to earn your BSN in order to get a masters or a doctorate in nursing for administration or education purposes, an ADN allows you to work until you decide your long term plans.

Annual salary may not be the top consideration when deciding between an LPN (licensed practical nurse) and an RN (registered nurse), but the difference is significant. In 2010, the annual median salary for an RN was $64,690 and $40,380 for an LPN. Yes, an RN degree does require more time, but the payoff is at least 20,000 more each year. It may seem easier to become an LPN because it does not require as much schooling and subsequently does not cost as much, but in addition to a higher salary, RNs enjoy so much more in their career.

A recent study shows that in California, the median salary of a nurse with an ADN was $70,804 while the median salary of a nurse with a BSN was $75,017. Although the BSN prepared nurse did get paid a little bit more, the amount was not significant. This is a huge scale tipper. Why spend more money and more time going to school if you are going to get paid almost the same amount to do your job?

The emotional rewards of this career are limitless. Licensed practical nurses also often find fulfillment in each day's work. Helping others to recover and providing them with quality care is why many choose the licensed practical nurse career path. A career as a licensed practical nurse allows for many advantages. It is a career path that keeps on giving while allowing you to advance in your career and reach new heights in education.

About the Author: