5 Benefits of a BSN in Nursing

Nurse attending to patient in hospital bed

If you’re like many considering a return to school to become a nurse, no doubt the countless news stories highlighting the bravery, compassion, and strength of nurses are on your mind. And though most nurses would probably consider saving a life just another day at work, we all know that it’s so much more.

Nursing is truly a calling and an act of love. That’s what makes nursing such an appealing career for those seeking more than just stability or opportunities for growth — though it certainly offers both.

Of course, the degree path you choose plays a big role, too, which is why a BSN in nursing is important. Keep in mind that not every nursing degree offers the same level of knowledge and skills or the same access to career opportunities.

There’s good news, though. If you already hold a non-nursing bachelor’s degree, you may be eligible for the Accelerated 2nd Degree ABSN program at Notre Dame of Maryland University, which can help you earn your degree in as few as 15 months. Plus, you don’t need prior health care experience to do it. In a moment, we’ll explain how this is possible, but first, we’ll take a closer look at the “gold standard” of nursing degrees … the BSN.

Why Get a BSN?

Student wearing scrubs practicing on a manikin

Like any profession steeped in scientific knowledge, the role nurses play has evolved considerably since the days of Florence Nightingale, or even over the past half century.

Today more than ever, nurses function as the eyes and ears of an increasingly complex health care system. Despite how hospital dramas portray the dynamics between nurses and doctors on TV, the truth is nurses and doctors increasingly enjoy highly collaborative relationships based on mutual understanding and respect.

Nurses are often the first to notice when a patient’s condition changes. They’re also likely to be patients’ biggest advocates — a byproduct of the amount of time they spend with patients compared to physicians — and the ones to comfort and console patients, as well as to educate them in terms they can understand.

As we mentioned above, multiple paths exist to enter the profession. Here are five benefits of holding a BSN:

1. Magnet Status

Hospitals and health care providers know why a BSN in nursing is important. It’s why so many hospitals are moving to hire only registered nurses who hold a BSN degree — and why hospitals that have achieved Magnet® status, a designation awarded by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) that demonstrates they meet certain standards of nursing excellence, require nurse managers and leaders to hold a bachelor’s in nursing.

2. Marketability

Recent data from the American Association of Colleges of Nurses indicate BSN-educated nurse graduates are far more likely to find a job shortly after graduation than are new nurse graduates overall (which includes RNs with associate degrees).

Decisions like these aren’t based on conjecture or mere preference toward higher learning, either. Compared with Associate Degree of Nursing (ADN) programs, BSN programs feature more robust nursing curricula. As a result, students graduate with a greater breadth of knowledge on everything from crucial nursing techniques to cultural, economic, and societal issues that lead to health disparities.

3. Better Patient Outcomes

Even more apparent to health care decision-makers is the growing body of research that shows hospitals and other care facilities with greater percentages of BSN-educated nurses yield better outcomes for patients. It’s why in 2010 the Institute of Medicine (IOM) set a lofty goal for 80% of the U.S. nursing workforce to hold a BSN degree by 2020. While this goal has yet to be reached — the result of a persistent shortage of nurses nationwide — it’s clear a BSN degree remains the future of nursing.

4. Higher Salary

By earning your BSN, you will likely be first up for higher-paying positions, so you’ll be able to increase your earning potential significantly more than your counterparts who have an ADN.

In fact, the average annual wage for registered nurses was $82,750 in May 2021, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

5. Career Advancement Opportunities

A BSN degree benefits your career significantly in the long-term, in addition to giving you a great start in the field after you graduate. BSN-educated nurses begin their careers on an equal footing with their colleagues who hold ADNs, but they are far more likely to progress into management and specialized posts that pay significantly more later. This is mostly because BSN programs cover more in-depth material on the profession than ADN programs do in their fundamental skills training.

Furthermore, if you opt to pursue higher-paying nursing roles like nurse anesthetist, nurse practitioner, or nurse midwife — all of which call for a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree and advanced practice certification — you'll be well-positioned with a BSN.

Are You Ready to Become a Nurse?

Now that you know the benefits of BSN in nursing, it’s time to put your dream into action. Upon graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from Notre Dame’s ABSN program, you’ll be equipped with the skills and knowledge to pass the NCLEX and enter the nursing field with confidence.

absn student smiling in hallway

Reach out to our team of dedicated admissions counselors today to learn more about why enrolling in our 15-month ABSN program in Maryland is worth it for your future nursing career.