If you currently a nurse and are considering changing your profession, making the change to nurse educator is your next logical step. You will make good use of your experience, there is financial aid available through the Pennsylvania Higher Education Foundation (www.higheredfoundation.org), but the pay is also very competitive.
Nationwide, the average salary for a nurse educator with 1-4 years experience is $53,894. And the pay increases as your experience grows. The average salary of a nurse educator with 5-9 years experience is $61,273.
Many nurses express that there lack of interest in becoming a nurse educator is the decrease in pay, but when you compare the median hourly rate X 40 hour work week of an RN, a nurse actually makes $49,000 which is $4K less than a nurse educator. Granted, RN's will receive increased hourly compensation for working overtime, but in an apples to apples comparison there is little difference.
So if you are a nurse in Pennsylvania and looking for a change, consider a career in nurse education and teach the next generation of nurses. Don't forget to visit higheredfoundation.org to see if you can qualify for a grant or scholarship.
*Pay numbers in this article were obtained through Payscale.com and are current as of 12/2008.
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