With the challenges present in the U.S. healthcare system, employers need well-educated nurse leaders to rise up and contribute their skills and expertise. Nurses who earn advanced degrees are better prepared for these changes and can become leaders who tackle these problems for hospitals, primary care clinics, universities, nonprofits and other groups. Advanced degrees such as an MSN in Nursing Education can help nurses develop the skills and knowledge needed to train new nurses, mentor future healthcare leaders, and serve in vital administrative roles that directly influence the future of healthcare.
Healthcare Needs Nurses
Nurses play a significant role in providing quality healthcare services. Patients in a range of different care settings — hospitals, acute care clinics, primary care settings, rehabilitation facilities, and long-term care centers — depend on nurses. In some settings, specialties and regions, there is now a shortage. Highly qualified nurses are in great demand and nursing colleges are unable to keep up without more nurse educators. This creates a great opportunity for nurses who are ready to help transform the healthcare system and give back to their communities by sharing what they know.
As changes occur inside healthcare, nurses who are very knowledgeable and well-educated are in particular demand. New healthcare delivery models are being created and implemented, new information technologies are being adopted, and some employers are asking nurses to learn how these changes impact nursing care. Organizations need healthcare leaders who can adapt to change and ensure that patients are still getting the best possible care.
Nurse Educators Are Nurse Leaders
How well the healthcare industry adapts to change depends on how well-equipped healthcare’s leaders and personnel are. By mentoring tomorrow’s nurses, nurse educators provide leadership and shape healthcare delivery. Nurse educators teach new nurses the techniques, theory and clinical skills they will use in the workforce. Teaching other nurses is one way experienced nurses have significant impact on the lives and careers of others.
With the direct contact nurses have with patients, nurses are also in a position to influence their patients for the better and change their patients’ lives. All nurses serve in educational roles in the sense that they must be ready to teach patients better health habits. Nurse educators teach the people who will teach a multitude of others, multiplying the positive impact one nurse educator can have.
Career Opportunities that Improve Healthcare
As a nurse educator, you can work in a variety of different settings, but many nurse educators choose to serve in educational roles. Faculty members at nursing colleges often began their teaching careers with advanced nursing degrees such as an MSN in Nursing Education. Nursing college faculty are in high demand around the country, where shortages of faculty members have caused many schools to reject some qualified applicants from their programs. As the healthcare system sees more high-acuity patients, and as more Americans age and need additional healthcare services, there is an increased need for nursing graduates. As more students begin to study nursing, the need for instructors and mentors is growing. With the right skills and education, you can help the healthcare system meet these needs.
Nurse educators must be flexible, student-focused leaders who are able to adapt their work to accomplish the educational goals of the nursing college and help facilitate student learning. Faculty members typically teach, evaluate nursing student performance and understanding, provide resources to students and conduct research. They may publish educational materials, write research papers and develop nursing course materials. Whenever nursing students have questions about nursing career options, faculty members often serve as resources to help their students plan their careers. As they identify new topics, techniques and theories to add to the curriculum, nurse educators may work with their schools’ administrations to adjust nursing curricula.
The American healthcare system needs nurses who are ready to lead and teach others. Nurse educators can make a positive impact in healthcare by shaping the next generation of healthcare leaders, providers and change agents. Nursing colleges need more faculty members who are well-educated, flexible and prepared to educate other nurses. By obtaining more education — an MSN in Nursing Education, for example — nurses can learn the essential skills for teaching and mentoring students. Nurse educators can amplify their impact on others within their communities by teaching the nurses who will later teach patients. Becoming a nurse educator is one way to contribute your own knowledge and education to help fix the healthcare system.
Learn about the Lamar University online MSN in Nursing Education program.